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Scott Mercer outlines significant changes on Seagull stream - Overwatch

Mercy's being reworked, spectator improvements and more.

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About Ed Thorn

Ed's a huge fan of rushing B in CS:GO and grinding it out in Destiny 2. He will not rest until a new Wario Land is announced.

Principal designer Scott Mercer has shared a little insight into Blizzard’s design philosophy, and also provided the first details on new features coming to Overwatch in the future.

Mercer shared these details in a promotional livestream with Overwatch pro-player and streamer, Seagull.

Redditors “Ixallus” and "okbutimtrash" compiled a list of all the details mentioned by Mercer, while “JayneF” took this information and summarised it in an easy to read format.

Below we’ve got a breakdown of everything Mercer touched upon.

Spectator Mode

  • Various spectator UI cleanups to make it more intuitive and easy to use.
  • Blizzard is working on introducing new team colours among many other things.
  • Better stat screen for eSports, specifically those that track damage per ability, ability usage etc.
  • Full replay system that allows free cam. They specifically see this as useful to eSports which will allow for better post-match analysis.
  • Blizzard is hoping it can roll this out in time for the Overwatch World Cup 2017 at Blizzcon (November).

Gameplay & Heroes

  • Additional changes to spawn rates being made internally to address stalling. Overall the design team views stall to be an entertaining feature overall.
  • Blizzard is fine with Doomfist's current one hit kill (OHK) once the hitbox changes go live. They feel Doomfist has enough counters that the OHK is not an issue.
  • Blizzard is aware that the community wants transparent objective markers, and it’s working on implementing this in-game.
  • Mercy is going to get some changes, potentially in regards to her Resurrection mechanic.

Matchmaking

  • Role selection is something Blizzard has discussed internally and it will not be introduced. Locking players into certain roles is something the team is not keen on doing.
  • Blizzard has been making secret changes to the matchmaking system, meaning players cannot exploit off-peak SR farming or “win-trading”.
  • MMR resets are not going to be introduced. This is because the bell curve would match higher and lower skilled players together for a period of time. Everyone would have to hop online and play 50 matches in order to level it out!

Competitive mode

  • Adding a true competitive solo queue is not a priority.
  • Competitive Deathmatch is not off the cards. Blizzard is always discussing potential changes and additions.
  • More competitive point rewards are unlikely to be introduced. There are also no plans to alter or remove Golden weapons in their current state.
  • Blizzard is unhappy with SR decay in its current state, but believe that some form of it is still necessary. Mercer isn’t a fan of how it forces people to play the game. No further information was given - tweaks may be on the way.
  • Overwatch’s map pool isn’t big enough to warrant map voting yet.

Report System & Trolling/Toxicity

  • Overwatch’s reporting system is constantly being monitored and adjusted. Blizzard is going to be more aggressive with penalties and wants to start tracking people in-game to see if they’re throwing matches on purpose.
  • Players who only play one hero exclusively (one-tricks) is an aspect of the game that’s being looked into.

Misc

  • A map creator is something Blizzard wants to bring to Overwatch. It is not currently in the works though, and won’t be coming anytime soon.
  • 120 tick tournament servers will not be rolled out onto the general Overwatch servers we all play on. It simply puts too much strain on the tech side of things.
  • Blizzard is comfortable with their release cycle of 3 - 4 heroes or maps per year. Regardless of changes, a regular cadence to release schedules will be maintained if they do increase one day. It’s not an issue of running out of ideas though, as many hero concepts are in the works.
  • Blizzard want to emphasise that they do read feedback on forums and Overwatch sub-Reddits. The team encourages players to give feedback, rather than say nothing at all.

That's everything mentioned by Mercer on Seagull's stream, and we're left particularly impressed by the openness of Blizzard in sharing so many insights into the development team's plans for the game.

We'll also update the site with all the latest Overwatch info as Season 6 approaches, so stay tuned for more!

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