Overwatch 2, the preview of PvP

Overwatch 2, the preview of PvP

Overwatch 2

The news about the development of Overwatch 2 lately has been going on in fits and starts, and what little we saw a few months ago, on the occasion of BlizzConline 2021, suggested that the team was far enough behind with the processing of what would appear to be more of a kind of expansion than a real sequel. In recent months, the unthinkable has also happened: Jeff Kaplan, historical creator and director of the game, left Blizzard, handing the project into the hands of a trusted collaborator, Aaron Keller. The latest Developer Livestream, in short, was a good opportunity to tear the veil of silence and show the latest news with a focus on PvP: we remind you, in fact, that Overwatch 2 will include a large - and paradoxically, even more awaited - component PvE, in addition to the team versus team PvP mode we already know.

Teams of 5

It was certainly the most sensational announcement, which is causing the community to discuss and does not seem to have received the consensus hoped: at the release of Overwatch 2 the teams will change format and will go from six to five players. In the Coda roles this solution will result in the removal of a tank, so the teams will be composed of a tank, two attack heroes and two support heroes. The official motivations behind this new approach appear to be different. Keller spoke above all of a question of readability: with two fewer players on the battlefield, the games become clearer and more understandable both for those who play them and for any spectators. Furthermore, the presence of only one tank per team will focus the action on that specific player, pushing on the so-called "brawl", that is, close combat: players will not be able to afford to scatter and will have to stay close to their tanks. , concentrating the conflict in that space.

Overwatch 2: Reinhardt in action. The new solution should also affect the meta, giving certain tanks greater importance, and reducing waiting times for matches, since the game will only have to find two tanks per match in the research phase. Blizzard's strategy, however, also hides implications that are easy to understand. Leaving aside the fact that two fewer characters on the screen use fewer resources, especially in the face of the technical and visual upgrade that the team is making, this choice should guarantee the team greater control of the balance, however utopian it may be. The most mischievous - such as the vast majority of professional players - have also seen in this change an economic strategy: by reducing a player's teams, the costs of the Overwatch League also significantly decrease, with all due respect to all those participants who have trained for months or years to play in the role of tank.

Overwatch 2: the colorful Rio de Janeiro. In any case, at first glance the gameplay session shown during the Developer Livestream is not that it has revealed who knows what differences in terms of readability of the action. If anything, he pointed out the inadequacy of some heroes who will hardly be able to match their counterparts, if not going through very important changes. It is clear that Winston, Wrecking Ball, D.Va and Roadhog will have to be forcefully revised or directly changed into attack heroes: their aggressive play style does not fit the role of tank as Blizzard envisions it in the new five-man lineup. At the moment, however, we only know that tanks will have more health than present, and will enjoy a passive ability that will make them more resistant to knockbacks and other forms of crowd control. The new maps will also reflect this important change, giving teams more cover, cover and angles to hide behind when you don't have a tank at hand.

Hero changes

Overwatch 2: Tracer in action. As we said, Blizzard is still working on aggressive tanks and information on any changes is very scarce. We only know that Winston, for example, will acquire secondary fire: by pressing the relative button, his Tesla Cannon will project a single long-range discharge that inflicts more damage than the usual ray at short range. We have seen the new Reinhardt in action, which actually looks a lot like the old one, were it not for the two Fire Bolt charges and the Charge that can be turned more easily and can be stopped on the run. Zarya, on the other hand, has gained two charges on her Particle Barriers: originally intended as April Fool's Day, Blizzard actually implemented this change that makes the Russian tank even more effective. During the Developer Livestream, Keller and the others enjoyed fantasizing about potential synergies, imagining, for example, that Zarya could use the Particle Barrier twice on herself or twice on the usual Genji slicing everyone with the Dragon Sword while is powered by Ana's Biostimulator: a gruesome scene.

Overwatch 2: Mei's Endothermic Gun has been changed. Keller also hinted that Blizzard would be working on a nerf on Doomfist, without going into detail, and revealed that Mei's Endothermic Pistol will stop freezing opponents in place - by keeping them locked in, the weapon's flow will continue to slow them down and inflict periodically. more damage, but he will no longer be able to paralyze them, granting Mei her free evil headshots. The news, as far as the individual heroes are concerned, end here. Developer Livestream hasn't shown any other substantial changes, but Keller has promised that they will reveal new reworks later this year, anticipating that heroes like Bastion are under heavy scrutiny and may have completely changed from the way they currently work on Overwatch. In general, we found that attack and support heroes will also gain specific passive bonuses just like tanks - the former will move faster than all other heroes, while the latter will automatically regenerate their health after being out of action for a few seconds.

The new maps

Overwatch 2: the new Torbjörn. Artistic director Dion Rogers then unveiled Torbjörn's new look, once again demonstrating the care his team is paying to the details and animations of these new models. Sadly, the grumpy Swedish dwarf was the only hero to sport a new look in the Developer Livestream, although it was the first time we saw Widowmaker, Reaper, and McCree in action with the costumes unveiled during BlizzConline.

On the artistic and technical front, in fact, the new maps were the great protagonists of the show. In fact, Keller and his family took us on a tour of New York, Rio de Janeiro, Rome and Monte Carlo. We had already glimpsed the first three, while Monte Carlo was the surprise of the evening. Going into detail, New York is a hybrid map, while Rio is a Transport mode and Rome belongs to the new Escort category: in this mode, teams compete for possession of a robot that must be escorted to the opposite end of the map. . The team that manages to reach the goal or the team that pushes the robot farther away when time runs out wins.

Overwatch 2: the map of New York. Monte Carlo, on the other hand, is a Transport map: one team must drive a Formula 1 car to its destination, the other must prevent it. It seems that Blizzard has abandoned the narrative reasons why players compete for a certain objective or load, indulging in imaginative ways. Monte Carlo takes place at night and is made up of ups and downs, spectacular views and numerous bottlenecks where teams are forced to fight in melee for the load. In general, all the maps seem to have been extraordinarily cared for not only in geometry, but also in the details and variety of environmental situations. In New York we go from the open to the closed continuously, while in Rome we fight under the colonnades and between the imaginative monuments that give our capital an ancient and solemn air. Rio de Janeiro is a triumph of bright colors and crowded buildings that overlook the players and offer elevated positions to watch your back from. If there is something that really struck us, however, it is the sound. As promised at BlizzConline, the Blizzard staff have completely reworked the sounds and noises, now much sharper, louder and more scenic.

Overwatch 2: the Monte Carlo map. Perhaps this Developer Livestream has lasted too long for the few innovations revealed, but what we have seen will make the community discuss for months. Blizzard is walking on eggs: in theory the changes made to the game structure should have a significant impact on gameplay and balance, in practice, however, it is all to be seen. The truth is, this batch of news has shown that Aaron Keller's team is still way behind on the job and the launch window now seems further away than ever. Our feelings are ambivalent: we like what we have seen, but are we sure that it will be enough to win back the interest of those who have given up Overwatch for some time?


The new maps are awesome The new 5-player formations make sense ... DOUBT ... but will Blizzard be able to balance gameplay accordingly? Still many unknowns on the vast majority of characters Have you noticed any errors?

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