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Jeff from the Overwatch team is back, introducing a much requested feature. As the title quite clearly states, we can now choose not to play with people we're in a game with. What that does exactly is take up to two selected players of your choice and prevents them from matching with you (on your team at least) for 7 days. The feature is going to be in testing soon, and should be available some time before Season 10.
Jeff goes into detail on the system, when you might want to use it, how it will impact queue times for various skill levels, the warning (and consequences) you get if many people are avoiding you and more:
01:21 – Introducing new feature, Avoid as Teammate!
01:37 – Players you select with the feature will be avoided for seven days
02:22 – How to use this feature to help control your game experience
03:32 – There might be side effects of this system, but we’re closely monitoring it
04:10 – Thoughts on why we limit how many people you can avoid
04:40 – How this system affects those who have a high number of players avoiding them
05:52 – We are paying very close attention to how this feature performs
06:00 – We will continue to create features to help you craft your experience in Overwatch
So, how much do you think you'll be using the new system once it goes live and do you think it's a good way to address these issues?
Update - Here's some additional info on the new system:
Scott Mercer (source)
With the release of Patch 1.22, I wanted to talk about the new and updated tools that can help players create a better and more positive gameplay experience. Before diving into those details, I first need to thank everyone who has been helping us identify toxic behavior. We have seen a steady increase in usage of the Player Report tool, and these additional reports allow us to identify and action toxic players more quickly and at a higher accuracy. Players have also been reaching out via social media with reports and videos of blatant toxicity, and we have investigated each of them and taken appropriate action. The best way for everyone to continue helping us combat toxicity is simple: just use the Player Report tool whenever you encounter bad behavior and give an accurate and detailed report.
To help with the accuracy and clarity of reports, we are making a couple changes to the player report categories you can choose. The first change is renaming the “Griefing” category to “Gameplay Sabotage”. Griefing is a very broad term used in many different ways amongst the community. The intent of the category is to be used when a player disrupts the game or harasses other players through the use of normal gameplay mechanics. A clear example of this is Symmetra teleporter exits being placed at the side of cliffs so teammates immediately drop to their death. Another example is players intentionally allowing themselves to be eliminated by the enemy team. This is often referred by the community as “feeding” or “inting”.
It is NOT gameplay sabotage if a player simply makes a mistake or has a poor match. Everyone does that from time to time, even the very best professionals in the world. Players can also have a rough match without a lot of mistakes, simply because the other team is making better plays and performing well. For a player to be reported for Gameplay Sabotage, they must intentionally be trying to disrupt and harass their teammates or actively trying to lose. Note that playing a non-meta Hero does not mean someone is taking part in Gameplay Sabotage. Players who are trying hard to help their team to win should not be reported, regardless of the hero they choose.
The other change we’re making to the player reporting categories is removing the “Poor Teamwork” category. Many players were using this category in a very similar fashion to the “Griefing” category, because both categories could be interpreted very broadly to include diverse types of bad behavior. This made it more difficult for us to action players appropriately.
The addition of the “Avoid as Teammate” option also gives players another way to improve their gameplay experience online. If you use the “Avoid as Teammate” option on a player, that action is will be effective in the next match. The matchmaker will no longer place you on a team with the avoided player for one week. Sometimes you don’t want to play with someone as a teammate because you disagree with their playstyle or hero choice. Sometimes your personalities or communication style simply clash. These can happen without either party being toxic.
The use of Avoid as Teammates does NOT take the place of reporting someone for things like Abusive Chat, Inactivity, or Gameplay Sabotage. If you ever encounter a player being toxic, please take the time to report them for that behavior. It truly helps us make playing Overwatch a more positive experience.
Overwatch's newest heroine will arrive on live servers next week. Looking for a guide, we already have one up! https://www.icy-veins.com/overwatch/brigitte-guide
The latest PTR cycle ended a couple of days ago and everyone thought that perhaps Brigitte would go live this week. However, the team wasn't quite ready to push the new heroine out, so we'll see Brigitte on live servers on March 20! Check out the video for the design process behind Brigitte's art:
Some of you might already be thinking what's next after Brigitte. Well, we know the answer: it's Hanzo's rework! Some details on his rework were already shared by Geoff Goodman a while back. It looks like the team is happy with the changes they've made to this notorious hero and after Brigitte's release, they will work on his new visual and sound effects. The Hanzo rework PTR should go live in April.
The animation, visual effects and sound work are scheduled to begin post-Brigitte release. PTR will be after that. Hoping for a PTR sometime in April. (source)
Looking for a guide, we already have one! https://www.icy-veins.com/overwatch/brigitte-guide
The Brigitte patch notes have arrived, and aside from the new Hero we also get some changes to Sombra's Hack and hit it gets and responds to interruptions, as well as the usual huge amount of bug fixes!
March 20 (source)
New Hero: Brigitte (Support):
An engineer with peerless armor-constructing abilities, Brigitte Lindholm is a valiant squire who fights on the front line to protect her allies.
Brigitte’s armor engineering capabilities make her a stalwart support hero, capable of holding her ground in combat while also providing healing and armor for her allies. Her primary weapon is her heavy-hitting Rocket Flail that she swings in a wide arc in front of her to smash multiple enemies at once. Whip Shot enables Brigitte to fling her flail forward, striking enemies at a distance and knocking them backward. With each blow, Brigitte’s passive ability, Inspire, heals nearby allies over time.
Brigitte’s Barrier Shield deploys a frontal energy barrier that can absorb a limited amount of damage and protect any allies directly behind her. Once her Barrier Shield is deployed, she can use Shield Bash to lunge forward and stun the first enemy in her path. Drawing on her engineering prowess, Brigitte can create Repair Packs to instantly heal wounded allies or provide armor to teammates at maximum health. When Brigitte is at her strongest, she can activate her ultimate ability, Rally—a galvanizing call to arms that generates a substantial amount of armor for nearby allies and increases Brigitte’s movement speed so she can lead them into battle.
To learn more about Brigitte, click here.
Brigitte will be available in Competitive Play in Season 10. To learn more, click here.
Changed the name of Junkrat’s Scarecrow spray to Hayseed Updated Mercy’s Toast victory pose HERO UPDATES
Now goes on a 2-second cooldown when interrupted by damage Now more consistently interrupted when targets break line of sight Developer Comments: We’re also removing the 0.1 second window of time during a hack where it couldn’t be canceled via line of sight or with other abilities including Tracer’s Recall and Zarya’s Particle Barrier, which was originally put in place so the hack wouldn’t be interrupted by small objects such as light posts. We’ve implemented a separate fix for that issue, so she should still be unaffected by those small objects.
USER INTERFACE UPDATES
The Team Information Screen now displays the ultimate charge of your teammates
Fixed a bug that prevented Doomfist’s Rocket Punch from traveling forward if he had been hit by an enemy Doomfist’s Rising Uppercut
Fixed a bug that sometimes prevented players from aiming Doomfist’s Rocket Punch when facing an enemy
Fixed an issue that allowed players to jump over Doomfist’s Rocket Punch when on an incline
Fixed a bug that caused Doomfist’s Seismic Slam to cancel if he could not get close to his target
Fixed a bug that prevented Doomfist’s Rising Uppercut cooldown countdown from displaying if he was in a movement hindering ability (e.g. Zarya’s Graviton Surge or Junkrat’s Steel Trap)
Fixed a bug that caused Doomfist’s Rocket Punch cooldown to delay counting down if he was in a movement hindering ability (e.g. Zarya’s Graviton Surge or Junkrat’s Steel Trap)
Fixed a bug that prevented Doomfist’s Rocket Punch from hitting enemies that were close to him
Fixed a bug that prevented Junkrat’s RIP-Tire kills from being credited in the Kill Feed if the targets had a long death animation (e.g. D.Va’s Mech)
Fixed a bug that caused Mercy’s Regeneration to occur instantly if she took damage while at full health
Fixed a bug that caused Mercy’s wings to separate from her body if her Zhuque skin was equipped during her Toast victory pose
Fixed a bug that prevented Moira’s Biotic Orb from receiving kill credit if it expired at the same time it killed an enemy
Fixed a bug that caused Moira’s Fade visual effects to indicate the direction she was traveling in when she used the ability
Fixed a bug that prevented Reinhardt’s Charge from pinning enemies
Fixed a bug that prevented the chunks from the pumpkin in Reinhardt’s Pumpkin Smash emote from appearing after he obliterated it with his Rocket Hammer
Fixed a bug that caused Roadhog’s Chain Hook to appear at the top of an opponent’s screen if he used it against an enemy Mercy when she used Valkyrie
Fixed a bug that prevented Sombra from receiving environmental kill credit if she kills an enemy using Hack
Fixed a bug that sometimes caused Sombra to be visible to enemies without displaying a “Detected” notification during Stealth
Fixed a bug that sometimes failed to teleport players using Symmetra’s Teleporter if they used an ability that increased their movement speed when passing through it (e.g. Doomfist’s Rocket Punch)
Fixed a bug that caused some objects to block projectiles on Blizzard World (e.g. souvenir carts) UI
Fixed a bug that prevented the “Restore Defaults” button from resetting all settings in the Social Options tab
Fixed a bug that caused players to delete characters in the “Save Highlight” text box if they pressed down the delete input while their settings were below 60 FPS
Fixed a bug that caused the user interface to indicate two control points on a single control point map when playing a custom game
Previous live patch notes.
Looking for a guide, we already have one up! https://www.icy-veins.com/overwatch/brigitte-guide
Her gestating period on the PTR finished, Overwatch's latest support (with a hint of tank) has broken through to the live servers! It'll still take a while for her to jump into competitive play (over a month), which will make that quick play button that much more appealing now! Jeff Kaplan has mentioned this restriction on new Heroes coming into competitive might be a bit too much and they'll be keeping an eye on it:
Here are her intro video, dev diary and abilities, in case you missed her announcement:
Spotted on stream by reddit user JoeDon16 during a recent OWL match, Overwatch's unreleased replay system appears to be fully featured.
During the broadcast for yesterday's OWL match between the San Francisco Shock and the Florida Mayhem, reddit user JoeDon16 spotted the most recent iteration of Overwatch's replay system:
A replay feature does not exist in the live build of Overwatch, and very little has been said by the Overwatch team as to how or when a replay feature might be added to the game. With that said, a replay system has been in place for OWL broadcasts since the preseason began in December, and a quick glimpse of OWL's internal replay tool might give us some clues as to features we can expect from a replay system in the live game.
The first thing that caught my eye about this screen cap was that the replay system being used for OWL appears to be heavily optimized for competitive broadcasts. It allows users to download events logged in the game (such as kills, ultimates, etc.) from the "Combat Log" tab, presumably to be accessed later in the "Replays" tab during a dip in the action. It also has "replay length" and "replay offset" sliders at the top of the screen so that the length of the clips can be quickly modified on the fly.
With the success of the Overwatch League, it seems unlikely that Blizzard would ever need to release a replay tool such as this one to the general public. However, the knowledge that an internal replay tool is in place for OWL broadcasts is a great sign for Overwatch fans who are hoping for a similar feature to be added to the game in a future update.