BlizzCon 2015: First Impressions of New Overwatch Heroes

HeroLineup_BlizzCon_2015-smallBlizzCon was actually my first time to play Overwatch and all I can say is I’m hooked. I really enjoyed the team based game modes. It feels like a mixture of TF2 and a MOBA. The heroes you choose can drastically change your teams effectiveness.

I had a chance to run through most of the heroes including the three new ones. 


I’m a huge mech fan so I was naturally drawn to As a tank I found her to be pretty weak. Her defensive matrix does help soak up projectile damage but that’s pretty much where it ends.

If defensive matrix is on cool-down your mech suit dies pretty fast. Out of the mech suit you are very weak and not very effective.

Basic Abilities

Fusion cannons are a short-range high damage rotating cannon. They say it has high damage but I never was able to find out because every time I got close to someone the mech suit was destroyed.

Boosters was awesome for getting back to the fight after I died (and I died a lot). It also makes this a very mobile “tank”. You can move around and get in close to the enemy much easier than other tanks.

Defensive matrix is her core defensive ability. It allows you to shoot down incoming projectiles but it only lasts a few seconds and the cool-down is not short. Its a great if you can save it for an enemies ultimate. But I found it to either be on cool-down or I was out of the mech suit when it was best to use it.

Ultimate Ability actually has two ultimate’s.

Self Destruct ejects from her suit and the mech suit becomes a short range AOE bomb. Its quite powerful but leads back to my general problem with which is when youre out of your mech suit you’re useless.

Call Mech can be used to call for a new mech. The nice thing about this ability is it seems you’re invulnerable while you’re climbing in. The downside is it takes a lot to generate enough ultimate to get your mech back and you’re SUPER weak out of it. On top of that none of your abilities work when you’re out of your mech so your only way to generate ultimate is to use your blaster pistol.


Mei was my favorite. With the right timing she can really turn the tide of the match. The way to win with her is to be sneaky and get up close. Her role is to slow down and neutralize enemies allowing your team to take them out.

Basic Abilities

Endothermic Blaster damages and slowly freezes a single enemy. When frozen the person is stunned for a few seconds. Combined with damage from teammates or her secondary fire it can completely neutralize an enemy. The secondary fire is a medium ranged ice projectile. With the right placement I was able to take out snipers with two hits. It’s also decent for medium ranged damage when you cant get up close.

Cryo-Freeze is an ice block that prevents damage and heals you. It works very well with her play style of being close to the action. Those few seconds of being in cryo-freeze can open opportunities for you to get out of trouble.

Icewall is an enormous wall that obstructs movement and blocks damage. The cool thing about this ability is you can cast it under someone or yourself and they will stay on top of the wall as it grows. I was using it to get away from melee damage and to get onto structures that you normally cant climb/jump on. Its also a great way to block the enemies vision/attacks so your team can cross a street or get closer to an objective.

Ultimate Ability

Blizzard is quite literally a match changing ability. It’s a drone that you throw on the ground and it slowly freezes and damages enemies in a small area around the drone. If you time it right you can take out their entire team. The goal is to find a choke point where the enemy bunches up and throw it in there. Make sure to tell your team so they can be ready to put down damage.


Look at that character model to the right. Spot anything unusual? Perhaps something that wouldn’t normally be seen in a first-person shooter. Yeah, I’m talking about that green-edged sword. Genjo, for better or worse, differentiates himself from most damage dealers, and nearly everyone in the game by having a melee ability. Not just any ability, but his ultimate. Don’t worry, the rest of his kit plays more normally.

Basic Abilities

Shuriken comes in two flavors, an arcing spread or a tight stream to boost accuracy. They’ve their obvious use cases, essentially a long distance or close quarters selection. Genji doesn’t possess anything fancy in his basic attack options. The easy choice between something akin to a bursty assault rifle or shotgun being a button click away – not a weapon swap – is of incredible value.

Deflect is the first usage of the glowing katana. Instead of dispensing razorsharp cuts, Deflect is a passive defense ability that turns the tables on bullets. Direct them back at the offending character as you close the gap and prepare to pincushion them with Shurikens.

Swift Strike gives Genji incredible mobility. Use it to initiate, grab a killing blow or escape a hairy situation. Body block is ignored when striking, enabling crafty players to literally cut through enemy lines while leaving a bleed on those that tasted the katana. Land a killing blow from the initial dive or bleed and the cooldown is removed. Low life teams should fear the Genji chase. Oh, the synergy Swift Strike has with Dragonblade. Boundless synergy.

Ultimate Ability

Dragonblade has an edge. It kills without mercy. Sending the souls of the departed to a far flung realm. Easy to trigger, hard to execute well, save Genji’s movement abilities to get on top of your foes quickly. Chose a moment when your foes are clustered together to go in and unleash metallic justice. Succeed or prepare to die yourself. I know what you’re thinking, matching Dragonblade with Mei’s Blizzard seems OP. We’ll assure you that it works exactly how you think.