Sunday, May 28, 2017

Overwatch: Betrayal at Gibraltar.

I heard a lot around the forums about Total Mayhem's return to Overwatch's arcade, lately - maybe it was never gone?  I dunno, I don't spend much time in the arcade - but it was mostly about how Winston and Zarya just own this mode, apparently.

Total Mayhem breaks down like this.  Everyone gets double health, everyone's cooldowns are reduced by 75%, and everyone's ult charge rate is increased by 150% - but all abilities do the same amount of damage.  This means it's really, really hard to kill things - and characters with powerful cooldown abilities receive greater benefit from the mode's ruleset than say, Torbjorn, who doesn't have cooldowns that deal damage or offer any kind of protection (all he's got a cooldown on is laying a turret).

This means Tracer no longer gets instantly killed by Roadhog's hook, for example, as her 300HP can withstand his follow-up blast, she can blink every 1.5 seconds, and can rewind every 3.  It's crazy!

But, taking the forum's advice, I went Winston to see how powerful he really was.  Apparently he can stall a payload essentially forever annnd yeah.  He can.  The cooldown on his leap is less than three seconds - meaning it takes less time for the cooldown to pop than it does to leap up and hit the ground again, and he can drop his shield every four seconds.  It's huge.  His health pool - over 1,000, now, with lots of armor - is so colossal that you can stand there, chest-up, eating a Pharah or Reaper ult with plenty to spare, and when things get tight you can just pop his ult to refill it, and bring that total up to 2,000.

Oh - worth noting, though - another character who does very well in Total Mayhem is... Sombra.  Of all people. Sombra.  Your power, when you play the mode, is how rapidly you can toss out your powerful cooldown skills like Soldier's Helix, Ana's Grenade or Lucio's Amp It Up - and Sombra has an ability (on like a two-second cooldown, in this mode) that disallows you from using yours - and her ult will do it to your entire team.  She counters every benefit this mode gives you, save your health pool.

Having a Sombra is really one of the only ways you're gonna' win Total Mayhem on attack, because nothing else in this mode can actually set up team wipes like her EMP, and the massive health pools weigh things in defenders' favor.

Annnywho, I was havin' a lot of fun in Total Mayhem this weekend, even with Winston's severely low DPS.  We're defending on Gibraltar, their Mercy runs back towards their spawn to escape me, but I land on her and finish her off while her Hanzo tries to take me out, but I've just got too much HP.

I flee back towards a health pack while their Bastion sets up, dropping another barrier for cover, and... this happens.

Usually the PotG in one of these is Shutdown for shutting down an enemy ult that wouldn't have killed anyone on your team, or a Lifesaver for stopping an enemy who just used an ability that probably wouldn't have ended up killing anyone anyway.  Once I got it for picking two squishies with Tracer's Pulse Bomb, but this was somethin' really special.

Coming around the corner, all full of adrenaline and fury only to discover like... a tea party or something with my Mercy and Torb and the enemy Mei.  "Oh - is this what we're doin'?  Okay - hello there!"

After chilling out for a bit, I look at the payload indicator on the HUD and exclaim "the payload's moving!" to my brother.

"I know it's moving, there's a fucking Tracer on it and she won't die!"

"Oh okay, be right there," I told him, and killed every enemy who trusted me.  It's okay to trust an enemy Winston - it is! - just maybe don't think he'll be able to resist, when you trust him at the edge of a cliff.


  1. I played a payload map with a few friends against a team with a Mei and she was basically unkillable. She could almost continuously ice block and ice wall.

    Personally, I'm a big fan of CTF and it's where I spend most of my time.

    1. I have literally never tried CTF lol. I spend a lot of time on forums and I've heard hundreds of horror stories, mostly involving the word "draw'"

    2. Yeah, a lot of matches end in draws. It's not uncommon if both teams aren't aggressive enough or if the teams are very well matched. I don't find it that annoying though because most matches are over in 5-7 minutes, and you end up with 1700-2000'ish xp for your time.

      I'm almost a Mercy main and she's incredibly good in CTF. Pair her with a good D.Va or Winston (with a team that'll push effectively to take flags), and let the wins roll in. Well, it's not exactly that easy, but heroes that can fly in, block damage, and fly back out with a healer in tow are extremely effective.

      The makeup and effectiveness of teams is much the same as in Quick Play. Sometimes you'll be matched with people who are good and sometimes they'll be completely terrible. But as with draws the matches are so fast that I don't feel too bad when my team get utterly destroyed. However, it does feel amazing when your team has their shit together and you go 3-0.

    3. Hmmmm I do enjoy some nice Mercying... maybe I'll give it a shot ^.^

    4. Update: gave it a shot. What follows is a transcript of the conversation between I and my brother, upon completing our first CTF match.

      "Okay, well let's never do that again."