At BlizzCon 2019, Activision Blizzard officially confirmed what gamers have speculated about one of its beloved franchises. "Overwatch 2" is officially the sequel to the game studio's smash hit team-based shooter which was released back in 2016. Post-launch support has been phenomenal and it even spawned a dedicated esports competition called Overwatch League (OWL). Earlier this week, a teaser confirmed that new content was on the way. While there were many requested characters from fans, Echo takes the spot as hero number 32.
Last year, "Overwatch" lead designer Jeff Kaplan surprised fans with an unexpected announcement. Despite plans to release a follow-up with a robust single-player experience, he confirmed that all future add-on characters will be available for both titles. This evidently earned praises from fans who would rather enjoy the base game and its online multiplayer without the need to spend all over again.
The story behind Echo
This new hero first appeared in the animated short "Reunion," which was also the debut of Ashe. Her background story reveals that she is an advanced robot created by scientist Dr. Mina Liao. Her creator was later drafted by the "Overwatch" team to help fight Omnics that have rebelled against humanity. GameSpot points out the lore hinted that the latter was killed at some point during the Omnic Crisis. Echo, which is her legacy lives on to fight in her stead.
Classification and moveset
First speculated to be a Support character, Echo's gameplay footage shows that she belongs in the Damage role. Her primary attack is called "Tri-Shot" which, as the name implies, fires three projectiles per shot with an ammo count of 15. Next is the "Sticky Bombs" that shoots out six bombs that automatically detonate after a short delay.
Then there is the "Focusing Beam" which has special properties depending on the health of the enemy. Opponents and barriers that are in full health or above 50 per cent will receive minimal damage. However, once it is below that number, the damage is multiplied by four.
Finally, her final ability is "Flight" and allows her to boost into any direction including upward and move around for up to three seconds. This is followed by the passive skill "Glide" which lets Echo float down slowly.
Upon activation of her ultimate "Duplicate" players can choose which of the enemy players they want to turn into for a duration of 15 seconds. In this state, she does not only copy all of that character's appearance and moveset, but the rate of her Ultimate regeneration soars up to 10 times.
Skilled players can practically unleash more than one volley of damaging attacks for the duration while it is active. Once the time is up, she switches back to her original form with full health. It should be noted that it is likewise applicable when she gets killed while her ultimate is active.
Right now, Echo is only playable in the "Overwatch" PTR for PC. Kaplan acknowledges that in her current state, major adjustments need to be made to balance her gameplay. Therefore, it would be a while, before she becomes available on the regular servers and on home consoles as well.