What is GOATS in Overwatch? - Dexerto

What is GOATS in Overwatch?

Published: 6/Mar/2019 16:13 Updated: 19/Mar/2019 10:34

by Joe O'Brien


If you’ve been paying any attention to Overwatch in the last six months or so, there’s a good chance you’ve heard the term “GOATS”.

If you’re not a competitive player or a hardcore esports fan, however, you might not be entirely clear on exactly what it is, why it’s called “GOATS”, or why most fans seem desperate to see it gone.

As “GOATS” is practically a mandatory addition to the vocabulary of any Overwatch player or fan in the game’s current state, we’ve put together an explanation of exactly what GOATS is, where it came from, and what the future holds for it.

Blizzard EntertainmentGOATS has been the predominant composition in competitive Overwatch for several months.

What is GOATS?

GOATS is a triple-tank, triple-support composition named after the Overwatch team that popularized the strategy during their successful campaign through the North American Open Division and into Contenders NA.

The classic line-up features Reinhardt, Zarya, and D.Va as the tank line, and Brigitte, Lúcio, and Moira in the support positions.

In the highest levels of competition such as the Overwatch League, however, the value that an excellent Zenyatta player brings often means that he is played in place of the Moira, though the rest of the composition typically remains unchanged.

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How does GOATS work?

At its most basic level, GOATS is something of a super-powered version of classic “deathball” strategies, in which the idea is for the team to remain together as they charge down the enemy, targeting a specific player at a time to eradicate them quickly.

For this purpose, the speed boost provided by Lúcio is vital in allowing the composition to run down an enemy despite lacking the same degree of mobility that “dive” compositions have, while the close-range nature of the support provided by the likes of Lúcio, Brigitte, and Moira (if played) both encourages and rewards the team remaining together.

If coordinated properly the targeted damage more than makes up for the lack of “DPS” heroes, yet the large health pools and healing capacity offered by the extra tank and support that take the slots otherwise reserved for DPS mean that the GOATS composition itself boasts lots of survivability.

The complexity of GOATS comes in the team’s coordination, communication, and cooldown management. It’s therefore much more prevalent and effective at higher levels of play, and specifically in organized teams, than in the broader quick play or competitive playlists.

Blizzard EntertainmentMoira can be swapped out for Zenyatta as a variation on the original GOATS composition.

Why don’t Overwatch fans like GOATS?

Beyond the usual grumblings about the prevailing meta of the day, GOATS has come under particular fire for two main reasons.

The first is simply that the composition has endured at the forefront of the competitive meta for quite a long time now, with the original GOATS team first making their mark in May of 2018. Though the rise of the meta missed the end of Overwatch League season one, the GOATS composition has dominated most other Overwatch competition since then.

In regard to the composition itself, however, many fans consider it to be boring to both play and watch. With no space for heroes like Widowmaker, Tracer, and Genji in the GOATS composition, it’s less prone to producing spectacular highlight moments than most metas before, although Overwatch League analyst Sideshow argues that GOATS has its own appeals the more you understand precisely how it works.

Robert Paul for Blizzard EntertainmentSan Francisco Shock main tank Super thinks the next patch will be the end of GOATS.

When will GOATS be replaced?

Though it’s always hard to predict how the meta will shift, as it’s often predicated on the creativity of players in coming up with new strategies and counters, the one factor likely to disrupt the Overwatch meta is balance changes.

Fortunately for fans who are sick of GOATS, the balance changes that could spell the end of the compositions supremacy do seem to be approaching. On the current Overwatch Public Test Realm (PTR) patch, a huge swathe of changes are being tested, some of which seem specifically targeted at reducing the power of GOATS.

While it remains to be seen how big a hit GOATS will take, or what new strategies will replace it at the forefront of the meta, the new patch can be expected to reach the live servers alongside Baptiste’s release, which Blizzard have now confirmed will be on March 19.


Overwatch’s Jeff Kaplan explains how Priority Pass will fix queue times

Published: 16/Nov/2020 23:07

by Bill Cooney


Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan revealed a new system headed to the game that will hopefully help to cut down on queue times in his latest developer update.

The big Overwatch news this week is of course Symmetra’s Restoration Challenge, which will reward players with a brand new skin for the hero if they get nine wins between Nov. 17 and 30.

After filling us in on the latest story and event, Jeff revealed a brand new role queue feature that will hopefully cut down on wait times by basically offering players a way to get ahead in line.

Called the Priority Pass, Jeff explained that by going in role queue as a Flex player you’ll earn a pass that grants you a shorter wait time for a certain role.

Ashe Overwatch group
Blizzard Entertainment
Queuing Flex for any role will earn you quicker DPS times.

“If we’re being honest and direct with each other, that’s probably the Damage (DPS) role,” Kaplan laughed. “When you enter the Flex queue, you are in essence queuing for every role available — Tank, Support, Damage — and the game will put you into the role that is currently most needed to speed up queue times for everyone.”

As an extra incentive, players who win matches while in the Flex role will receive extra Priority Passes. You’ll still get them if you lose too, just not as many. Players will be limited to a maximum of 40 passes at any given time as well.

Timestamp at 2:35 for mobile viewers.


“This [40] is a number that might change, we might tune this differently,” Jeff added. “The goal of the system is to speed up queue times for everybody, and the way this is done is by highly encouraging the behavior that people queue for as many roles as possible, that’s the way to make the queue move as fast as possible.”

We don’t know exactly when this update will be going live, but Jeff did say it would be headed to the PTR “soon” before coming to the main game, so we’d keep an eye out for it sometime in the next few weeks.

Long queue times have been the bane of Role Queue’s existence since the system was introduced to Overwatch. Whether or not Priority Pass will end up cutting down on DPS waits remains to be seen, but at this point, DPS players are probably willing to give anything a try.