Director’s Take: Keeping true to our heroes

Hello! We’re back with another update. We’ve put out a loooooot of info in the past week, so I don’t have as many concrete details to share today. We’re going to talk about a few random topics, including values around collab development.

Let’s start the update with a…non-update…related to Season 3 balance. While you’re reading this on Friday, this piece was written on Wednesday for us to have the time to localize it globally. We don’t have a pulse on the balance for Season 3 yet, as our changes have only been live for a few hours. Our aim is to get balance information out to you all on or before my next update and if it looks like there are big issues with balance our intention would be to fix them before the mid-season patch.

The team is also talking about the Arcade. We feel like there are a few issues with this area of the game. Some of the game modes can have very long queue times. This is exacerbated by the fact that we have challenges that require people to play in the arcade and we’ve moved the most popular game modes from it to the Unranked card. Short term we’re looking at reducing the number of cards, rolling some game modes together in a rotating queue or both. Long term could be the addition of new modes or possibly a change to the feature.

Last week we talked about Push maps having a higher frequency than other maps. It was about 30% more. We implemented a quick fix this week that should go part way to balancing this out. Depending upon how big of an affect it has, we might need to do more to this in the future.

If you’re not interested in development values around collaborations then just skip this next part and log into Season 3. We’re really excited for the One-Punch Man collaboration this season, but this is something that we’ve never done to this scale. We think the world of Overwatch and its heroes are special, and that their looks and sounds are essential to gameplay, and we want to preserve that while still having the ability to put other exciting franchises and brands into the game. You’ll notice with the One-Punch Man skins that our heroes are wearing a costume of a One-Punch Man character. They still look like our heroes on the battlefield and they still sound like our heroes. Our intent is to integrate other characters into Overwatch but not to replace our heroes. We’ll learn each time we do this, we’re planning on more, and get better at it each time.

Our Art Director Dion expanded on how we are approaching these from an art perspective in this interview.

That’s it. I’ll be back in a week or two with more updates. See you in game!

– Aaron

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