Blizzard's team shooter Overwatch is hitting a major milestone today with the official unveiling of Baptiste, the game's 30th hero. Baptiste is a support character described as a "combat medic" who uses an array of gadgets to aid his team in battle. This includes a device called an immortality field that prevents nearby allies from dying, healing grenades, and Baptiste's ultimate ability, described as "a matrix that doubles the damage and healing effects of friendly projectiles that pass through it." of teasing, including a short trailer
Baptiste joins an ever-growing cast of characters for the colorful shooter; last year saw the addition of the well-armored engineer Brigitte, a Wild West gunslinger called Ashe, and everyone's favorite hamster Wrecking Ball. According to lead hero designer Geoff Goodman, the concept for Baptiste started around the idea of a "gadget healer" character.
"We were playing with various gameplay concepts around deploying gadgets / devices as a way to support and heal your team, Goodman tells The Verge . "From a pure gameplay standpoint, this hero was built to provide support players new options and gameplay to support their team, and also to players who might not play support often."
Baptiste joins a crowded field of Overwatch characters, and Goodman admits that it's "an increasing challenge" to come up with new heroes that feel distinct. “We are always about making heroes that overlap too much and don't feel unique enough to stand on their own,” he says. That said, the designer believes that Baptiste's unique healing abilities, combined with his combat skills ̵
Right now, high-level Overwatch play is dominated by a particular composition that combines three damage-absorbing tank characters with a trio of healing supports. It's known as "goats," and it's particularly prevalent in the Overwatch League at the moment. Interestingly, Goodman doesn’t see Baptist fitting particularly well in this composition; "I think we'll see the Baptist played with Ana for some longer range damage dealing and damage boost ultimate comboing," says Goodman. "Ana can also fire through his" amplification matrix "and get both boost and damage damage, depending on who she hits. I also think it's possible we'll see Baptiste paired with Bastion, which can be really scary when you can buy him precious time with 'immortality field' and boost his already scary damage with 'amplification matrix.' ”
(Goodman says that the design team has "an open line of communication with [professional] players, which can be useful to gain their perspective of the game. Ultimately, though, we are designing for everyone and hope players of all levels enjoy playing them." )
Overwatch lore, Blizzard describes him as a form soldier with a tragic childhood, who was forced to join the infamous Talon mercenary group. But when he realized the group was up to no good, he had trouble leaving. By Blizzard:
Talon wouldn't let him go. Baptiste knew too much, and they sent operatives after him to silence him. Agent after agent came to him, including Baptiste's forms comrades. To stay under the radar, Baptiste drifted from place to place, aiding in humanitarian efforts around the globe. The few Talon members who managed to track him down were never seen again. Now, Baptiste works toward a better world, healing where he can and fighting when he must.
He knows that he cannot handle his past – but that makes a difference now is what matters.
You can just watch yesterday's teaser.
Luckily you have to wait long to try out the intriguing hero; Baptiste is available in beta today through Overwatch 's public test region, with a full release to follow after.