New character, old events, and more on the way.
Jeff Kaplan, the vice president of Blizzard and the face of their game Overwatch had a lot to say yesterday. Jeff, who recently brought us all a Merry Christmas with his yule log stream, starred in another video. This developer update wished everyone a happy new year and provided a reason to look back on 2017. He also teased some new content.
Looking back on 2017 Jeff mentions that the year started off with the release of the map Oasis. He goes on to discuss the new heroes added, Orisa, Doomfist, and Moira, as well as the new game types. Personally I’ve played on Oasis so many times I’d forgotten how new a map it was. In fact, when he lays it all out I realize just how much has been added to the game in the past year.
For 2018 content Jeff had little to say about what the biggest news. While the details are slim, he does confirm that a new hero is on the way. “We are well along the path on hero 27.” Jeff said in the video. He went on to say “We think the hero is going to be awesome. We think the hero is very needed.” He’s coy about the release date but confirms that the hero is in internal testing.
Jeff also talked about the new map, Blizzard World, and confirmed ‘Year of the Dog’ holiday event as well as new Uprising event. Perhaps most exciting event wise, the anniversary event is returning so we can all get the dance emotes we missed. After the new hero the biggest nugget of information Jeff lets slip is content being added to the normal loot boxes. Filling the standard loot boxes with new content would be a huge boon to longtime players, many of which who have already gotten most of the content not locked behind a holiday or event lootbox. Jeff says this content is coming, “Hopefully sometime this month.” Fingers crossed he’s right.
What does all this mean?
Jeff is admittedly vague on most of the juicy details about the new character. His saying that the hero is “very needed” is an espically interesting point. Could he be referring to a hero in the Defense category? That is a ‘class’ that hasn’t had any heroes added since release. Could it be a hero who counters an existing meta or tactic in that game that’s become a problem? Could it even actually be named Hero 27? Only time will tell. Typically new heroes are released on the Public Test Region (PTR) before release for quick play, competitive, and on consoles.
It’s worth noting here that while some heroes are slow to be adopted by professional players in tournaments, others notable Moira, have been adopted very quickly. With the Overwatch League right around the corner Jeff could be talking about the new character in terms of the league.
You can watch the developer update for yourself here.