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Turtle BeachOctober 13, 2021

Overwatch League Pros Play Overwatch 2

With Overwatch 2 still not having a release date until at least Spring 2022, many people have understandably been eager to get more insight to what the sequel to Blizzard’s hit FPS title will have to offer. After the confirmation that Overwatch 2 will feature 5v5 combat as opposed to the original’s unique 6v6, the question on everyone’s mind was how will the game differ if typical compositions will now only have 1 tank role (still 2 DPS and 2 supports).

Thankfully, the Overwatch League YouTube channel released a preliminary showmatch where pro players from different Overwatch League teams battled it out on a very early version of the new game. There were some limitations however as the new heroes and a few old ones were disabled - presumably because they’re still not ready to be shown or are going through massive reworks. But thanks to three new videos showing the perspective of the tank, dps, and support, we can dig a little deeper about the features and changes to expect when Overwatch 2 reaches its final version.

TANK: Matthew “super” DeLisi - San Francisco Shock

All the DVA mains out there should be happy to know that the South Korean mech pilot's gameplay seems largely the same compared to her current version. The first part of Super's tank perspective video shows him solo-tanking as DVA where the mech keeps her same fusion cannons, boosters, secondary missiles, defense matrix, and of course her self-destruct ultimate. With her trademark "pilot form" also still present after her mech is destroyed, the role DVA provides as a versatile tank that can quickly chase down objectives or fleeing enemies is still intact. Though unlike Reinhardt or Orisa, DVA was never known as the primary tank teammates would stand behind, so we'll have to see how her defensive tools adapt to compensate for only having 1 tank per team.

After the side switch, Super swaps to his infamous Reinhardt and that's where Overwatch 2's changes become more noticeable. Reinhardt's shield strength looks to be reduced to 1200 from the original's 1600, his charge is now on an 8 second cooldown instead of his current 10 seconds, and his firestrike now has 2 charges. While the extra shield strength will certainly be missed in a game with only 1 tank, these changes make sense if Blizzard's intention is to move Rein in a direction where he's able to fight on more even footing with a quicker charge cooldown and an additional firestrike as opposed to his previous identity of the guy you walk behind and watch as he holds up his shield and swings his hammer.

It didn't take long before Super swapped to Roadhog who like DVA, has kept all his abilities and cooldowns the same. It's interesting however that his hook functions exactly like it does in the current Overwatch given that Blizzard has admitted that they'll be moving away from heroes having "crowd control" abilities.

Before the match was done there was one last swap to Wrecking Ball who once again contains the same abilities, cooldowns, and ammo amounts to his live version. Unfortunately there wasn't much to extrapolate here before the video ends, but it's still curious how these types of mobile tanks who never typically played as a beefy frontline will perform without another tank that would be the one staying closer to the team.

DPS: Dong-ha “Doha” Kim - Dallas Fuel

Love him or hate him, Genji and all his cybernetic ninja abilities and cooldowns are back. Genji continues to be a mobile nuisance on the battlefield as his role is to find his way into the enemy backline where he can poke down enemies with his shurikens and take some quick kills with his Swift Strike or Dragonblade ultimate. With 1 less tank, does that mean Genji will have more opportunities to hunt down squishy targets or will he be more vulnerable now with 1 less tank to fall behind when things get too much to handle?

The other hero Doha got to try out was Solider: 76 who is also looking pretty similar to what we know. Ever since the original Overwatch was first launched, Solider was always meant to have gameplay that would feel familiar to even beginner FPS players while also being powerful in the hands of FPS veterans. In that sense, keeping Soldier basically the same is important for keeping Overwatch's sequel accessible to all types of players, but in the hands of someone like Doha you can see how a hero that can sprint, heal, fire off high burst damage with his helix rocket, then sprint out is a powerful combination to have for a pro player.

SUPPORT: Seung-soo “Jecse” Lee - Dallas Fuel

Jesce first plays Lucio who remains as one of the most recognizable faces of the Overwatch franchise. As perhaps one of the only true aoe healers, Lucio has a big job balancing out his healing and speed-boosting modes during games. As a character that wasn't particularly good at quickly healing high-HP tanks in the first place, Overwatch 2 is looking to be rather suited for Lucio's gameplay - at least in the hands of Jesce who is a veteran at knowing when to prioritize the team's needs of healing or mobility during crucial teamfights.

Next up is Brigitte whom the Blizzard devs already stated would be getting a rework to her controversial Shield Bash stun. It would at least appear that the current version remains on this iteration of Overwatch 2 as her gameplay at a glance looks untouched. A purely melee healer is rather unique even for Overwatch's standards, but the fact that she still has her shield (albeit a small one) might have a lot more importance now when dedicated shields are hard to come by with 1 tank.

Last but not least is the classic valkyrie Mercy and all her angelic glory. As powerful as her resurrection skill is, Mercy players will now have some serious decision making as they now have to choose when to rez their only tank (tanks being the typical choice for the skill) or to use the 30 second cooldown on a crucial dps or fellow healer. Jesce opted into using it on Ashe, though he got the animation interrupted with an enemy Roadhog hook.

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