Overwatch has a great line-up of tanks already. What’s the deal with Orisa, then?
Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan has issued a new developer update video explaining why Orisa was chosen as the newest hero to join the cast.
As you’ll see above from about 8:11 on, Kaplan said Blizzard took a look at Overwatch’s current tank line up and found heroes like D.Va and Winston play a disruptive role, while Roadhog is all about positioning. Meanwhile Reinhardt is an “anchor tank”: the team builds and positions around him because of his low ability and his protective ability.
Blizzard wanted Overwatch players to have another option in that same role – a hero other players could arrange themselves around. Orisa, another low mobility tank with powerful barriers, is the answer to that.
The Overwatch team is well aware that there are concerns with barriers at the moment, but one of the goals of the recent Bastion rebalance was to make him more powerful against barriers, and characters like Symmetra, Reinhardt and Junkrat have effective counters. Blizzard will look at these characters’ abilities if barriers become too dominant in the meta.
Finally, Blizzard said it enjoyed exploring the possibilities inherent in a female character with a more aggressive and powerful presence, to counter the common (lazy!) design trend of making female characters largely the same size and shape while male characters come in all sorts of forms. Nice to think the Overwatch team challenges itself; that’s got to be more fun than regurgitating tropes.
Want more on Orisa? We have a video showing Orisa gameplay, abilities and all skins from the Overwatch PTR, as well as Blizzard’s formal introduction of Orisa to the Overwatch community, which details her backstory and intended gameplay function.
Orisa is available now on the Overwatch PTR on PC, and is coming to general PC as well as PS4 and Xbox One soon.