Yesterday, Overwatch added a hamster. The hamster’s name is Hammond, or Hammy for short. In a diversion about cyborg ninjas, stretched mother-daughter relationships, and militant groups with edgy-ass names like Talon, here’s Hammy a Hamster. It’s only one some-more instance of how Overwatch is embracing a dumb side.
I’m not certain if Overwatch ever fell into a rut, yet for a few months there, it was swinging a toes dangerously over a margin of one. New events, maps, and heroes supposing duration excitement, yet unsuccessful to shake things adult in a durability approach or chase a meta that wasn’t changeable so most as it was adding appendages and anticipating new ways to adhere on.
In a past few weeks, however, that’s started to change. First, Blizzard finally denounced Symmetra’s third overhaul, aka Portal 3. The Indian architect-turned-international-superspy can now use her portals to set adult definitely bonkers plays that wreak massacre on normal notions of positioning. You competence consider you’re protected from D.Va’s self-destructing mech, yet all it takes is one well-placed portal to clarify we of that thought and also your life. Sym can also toss out a defense that quickly spans entire levels. It is—and we do not contend this lightly—an comprehensive unit.
This week, Blizzard also announced that tactical secrecy espionage favourite Sombra’s pack is getting supercharged. Soon, her invisibility and translocator abilities will stay active indefinitely. In other words, you’ll be means to sojourn secret and blink behind to reserve whenever we please. That’s a large change from a despotic time boundary she operates underneath now. She can really sneak, assistance her group with recon, and find harmful flanks—as against to behaving as a hack-happy B-grade Tracer.
Portals and invisibility are a context in that a hamster has been deployed. Some people competence tell we that a hamster is bad, yet we offer we this strongly worded counter-argument: Hamster good. Hammond, too, stands to describe positioning as we now know it archaic with a wire that allows him—inside his already-iconic meching ball—to pitch all over a dang place like the gorilla many reputed him to be. He can go high or low while outstanding enemies out of his way. Or he can do totally bonkers things like this:
He’s a hulk round of eternally mortal glee. He can insert to all from a cargo to sharks. He’s a sorrow rodent in a bombard that talks in a super low and lawful voice. He’s perfect.
In terms of both pack and tone, Hammond signals that all bets are off. His abilities fit a new Overwatch trend of “fuck your positioning” while also being magnificently over-the-top. At a same time, though, we do not during all consider Hammond is a hamster out of water. Overwatch is a diversion about a time-traveling lesbian whose best crony is a articulate outdoor space ape. He fits right in, y’all. The bizarre thought behind Overwatch was for everybody to feel uniquely overpowered. The diversion finally seems to be headed in that instruction for real, rather than personification whack-a-mole with nerfs in office of hyper-standardized “balance.”
Of course, there are still causes for concern. Recently, some have decried Overwatch’s importance on abilities that bluster to hit reduction mobile heroes around like reluctant pinballs, and Hammond only adds to that viewed imbalance. It can be uninteresting to feel like you’re hardly in control of where your in-game physique ends adult in a thick of battle.
There’s also a doubt of who a Overwatch team is conceptualizing for during this point. Overwatch League is a elephant in a room here, and while it’s good to see some-more dumb heroes and abilities rather than a slew of tasteless yet simply offset kits, Blizzard seems to be conceptualizing flattering heavily with OWL and some-more generally rival players in mind. Both Symmetra and, previously, D.Va got redesigns that took divided some of their interest to infrequent players interjection to some-more formidable mechanics. Sure, Symmetra competence be wackier and some-more versatile now, yet will she interest to many of a people who used to venerate her? On a upside, Overwatch’s new looking-for-group feature seems to indicate that Blizzard is perplexing to figure out how to arrange players of all forms into groups and matches where they feel comfortable, yet it’s walking a really formidable line.
Lastly, there’s a emanate of support heroes. Mercy—who also got an OWL-friendly redesign—is still viable, yet distinct offensively-geared characters, she lost her showstopping aptitude for a dramatic. Blizzard only can’t seem to figure out how to make supports fit Overwatch’s fantasy. Even Brigitte, who is really cold and good during thwacking, has a sincerely tasteless kit, with her support abilities subsidy adult a array of flashier descent moves. Meanwhile, Symmetra had to be private from a support difficulty wholly before she could develop from a Metapod into a Butterfree.
Overwatch’s preference to spin and face a bizarre is mostly a step in a earnest direction, yet it comes with drawbacks. At this point, it’s tough to contend how all of this will settle when a dirt clears, and a ensuing meta could be a frustrating calamity for all we know. But for now, I’m happy Papa Jeff and association aren’t personification it safe. The universe could always use some-more tiny and bushy heroes.