Sharable replays and revamped career profiles coming to Overwatch - Dexerto
Overwatch

Sharable replays and revamped career profiles coming to Overwatch

Published: 30/Jan/2020 21:24

by Michael Gwilliam

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On January 30, Overwatch Director Jeff Kaplan announced that Hero Pools and an experimental mode would be coming to the game in a future update. However, several other notable upgrades were quickly glossed over, which might make the game more enjoyable for players.

These quality of life changes include new functionality for the replay viewer. According to Kaplan, these improvements will be coming “pretty soon” and will allow users to “pin” one of their ten replays so it doesn’t get deleted.

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He noted, however, that just like before, the old replays will still no longer be functional once a new patch drops.

Blizzard Entertainment
Soon, you will be able to share a replay of your epic Sombra game.

The good news didn’t stop there: As it turns out, the team is working on letting players share their replays with others, so they can check out your games in their respective version of Overwatch.

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“I think this will be really fun for content creators,” Kaplan noted. For instance, this should help coaches be able to analyze games without needing a YouTube video of the match.

The Blizzard VP went on to explain that there will be a major overhaul coming for career profiles in Overwatch 2, but a “light refresh” is likewise taking place for the current game.

“Just kind of clean up some of those things that have been bothering a lot of us for some time,” he said of the fixes. An example Jeff gave was the ability to sort player icons, though he provided no further insight aside from the fact it is coming in the next few months.

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Additionally, a “big Workshop update” is in the works, and more information on that will be available either as a blog or forum post at a later date.

It’s unclear what exactly this update could entail, but former Overwatch League pro Dafran did claim that a “map editor” would also be coming to the game. Could that be what Kaplan was referring to? Only time will tell.

Blizzard Entertainment
What could the big Workshop update include?

While Overwatch 2 is still a ways off, it’s good to see that improvements are still coming to the standard game, and hopefully all these additions will be polished and perfected by the time the sequel launches.

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Exactly when that is, however, remains up in the air.

Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun

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Blizzard Entertainment’s Vice President and Overwatch’s beloved Game Director Jeff Kaplan has revealed what he thinks is the ideal competitive meta for the expansive title.

Overwatch exists in many forms, from its highest ranks to its lowest, but the game’s competitive meta at the professional level has also varied greatly since the original release back in May 2016. 

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In the olden days, teams prioritized dive compositions led by Winston’s jumps and Tracer’s blinks. Then, in 2019, fans around the world either groaned or cheered as the divisive GOATS meta took center-stage, featuring a hefty squad built entirely with tanks and supports. 

Now, Kaplan is explaining his perspective on the game’s ideal state, following criticisms he levied back in July against the game’s double-shield reliance. Examining the game’s departure from a static, Orisa and Sigma-dependent environment, he dissects his compository ideology. 

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Brigitte stuns Junkrat on Volskaya
Blizzard Entertainment
Barriers have held an uncomfortably powerful role in Overwatch for a long time.

As discussed in an interview with the Loadout, Kaplan is both aware of the professional scene’s interests and the casual base’s tendencies. Coupling those factors, he believes the game is at its best when there is some blend of high skill caps and diverse team compositions.

“The most ideal, healthiest state of the game is when the meta is somewhat fluid, when the meta is more map dependent or team match up dependent than it is static. We’ve all seen those moments when the meta has been completely static and all six players will just play the same six heroes every time. I think that’s fun from a mastery standpoint, but I think it’s a lot more exciting for viewers when creativity and curiosity come into play,” he said.

When Kaplan refers to a “static” meta, the simplest example is 2019’s GOATS, where three healers (Brigitte, Lucio, and Moira) were coupled with three tanks (D.Va, Reinhardt, and Zarya) and would barrel into opponents.

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It took tremendous teamwork to be pulled off successfully against other professional teams, but many fans considered it more tedious than entertaining after months of gameplay.

In its current state, Overwatch is not completely balanced, but there is a degree of variety to it. That diversity seen in the Overwatch League spans downward into the casual ranks. Kaplan indicates that this is in line with his department’s hopes.

“I think most of our players would say in the ideal meta, all our heroes would be viable in some way competitively. I think as a competitive goal from a game designing and game balancing perspective that is extremely challenging, but it’s obviously what we strive to achieve.”

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While he assures that Overwatch would be completely balanced in an ideal world, in the meantime, his team would at least like to push toward a game that varies to some extent based on coaching, player preference, and map.

It remains to be seen if current and upcoming patches can accomplish that, but Kaplan’s emphasis on “fluidity” is a welcome driving force.

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