The story of Overwatch: 21-hero saluteIn the final part of GameSpot's series on Overwatch, Danny O'Dwyer explores the creation of the 21 heroes that populate the game. Their history, inspirations and what happens when they break the game.
About a couple days before in the office we were working and a couple of cards players, there was the [UNKNOWN] and I believe there might've been a, maybe it was a mercy was actually in the office, they were friends with some of the people. Seeing [UNKNOWN] walking through the office, it was just a great feeling and I And the costumes were really amazing. And I did ask the cos players. I was like tell us if there was anything that you would change in the design, being a cos play. I think it was actually a cos player that had a reaper costume. And he said, can you give us more pockets? [LAUGH] So we could put- [UNKNOWN] need somewhere to put his phone. Yeah, he's like, can you give me a couple pockets? We're like, that's good, that's really good. [MUSIC] Hi, I'm Danny O'Dwyer and first I just want to say thank you so much for watching our three part series on the story of Overwatch. In this our final episode we focus on the 21 playable characters in Blizzard's latest game. The hero's of this game split into four classes of defense. Offense, support, and tanks these folks we're in the Gambit for meta focused apemen to zen robots, Russian snipers, and Australian pyromaniacs. But how do you make a game which allows this many character combinations, where do you find inspiration? Where do you draw the line and what happens when one of them is broken. In todays video without getting into exhausting detail, I talked to the designers and artists about the process of creating the games 21 heroes. Presumably every time the hero team starts to like give people new abilities it like causes nightmares I imagine, right? Sometime, yeah. So early on in the project, I had a conversation with Jeff Goodman. He's kinda our principal hero designer. The guy's amazing at what he does and he let me know that one day and it wasn't on our initial list of heroes, one day we will have a flying hero that can go anywhere they want. They want to in these maps. Which was sort of a terrifying thing for me to think about at the time but, Like World of Warcraft all over again when they put flying man thing in My gosh, yeah. That brings back some memories actually but yeah it's a little bit like that where I realized that these maps are going to have to support a lot of different functions for heroes. There are quite a few that made some pretty serious changes over time. I mean it also ranges of how they change. So a character like Ferra came from a game play concept. We're like well she was one of the earliest ones, we're like well we all love rock launchers, we should just put a rock launcher in the game. So the character is built around a rocket launcher. Okay we'll make the rocket launcher really cool, well being above people is really nice and you get the splash damage and everything so what can we build around that? And it kind of went from there so we had kinda of a really rough prototype in there. [UNKNOWN] for instead like you said air superiority. We, Jeff Goodman our principle designer. He was thinking of a character that had a jet pack and a rocket launcher. And those were the two main criteria. And we went through dozens of concepts for Fairing. You know, at one point, we called him the Rocket Queen as like a code name for one point in time. At one point he was Rocket Dude. All I'm saying is kind of come up with a whole bunch of different ideas and just kinda put them up there for everyone to discuss and we had you know guy looking like Tom Cruise at one point and there was just so many it was great. I love that they can do that, just have all these different ideas. So that one was definitely originating from a design standpoint. A character like Zarya for instance is just a character that we really wanted to do, you know big strong female character with a big gun And design took that archetype and found an awesome kit for her based around the art that we made. We should do a cybernetic monk. The [UNKNOWN] concept artist drew a picture of him. And everyone was like, yes, we're going to do that. Yeah that's like and then we figured out what a cybernetic monk was and was like what if he shoots these energy balls and then has a yin yang buff rebuff thing, and then occasionally he becomes one with the universe. Like okay, go. [LAUGH] But the character that we actually used as an RND character to develop the art style was actually [UNKNOWN] And it's interesting, because like I was saying about marrying the old and the new, Torbjorn kind of sits right in the middle there, where Blizzard is known for World of Warcraft, you've got your dwarf characters and that was a place we thought we could start and see where we could Bring that archetype, and push that [UNKNOWN] on with this near-future tech. So you take a character like Genji, and Genji, as you guys have seen early on, we had concepts of him real early. And so we had this idea all the time we were gonna build him, we had a really rough prototype of what it could be. Hanzo and Genji They were, at one point, one character that we just called Hanzo. And he had a bow. He had a sword. He had ninja stars. He had all kinds of. The ninja samurai archetype is so interesting to me. And the team just loves that theme. Once we got in there and started tuning it and trying to make it work, it was an almost impossible [LAUGH] situation for us cuz It's very difficult to make sort of an [UNKNOWN] of sort of high damage character with a melee weapon only, in a a game where everybody's shooting you all the time. So, he probably did the most changes internally, at one point, he had the [UNKNOWN], and [UNKNOWN] We decided what if they're like these strange brothers and we can have the sword and the bow and we can tack on all these different themes for both of them and now like having their story fleshed out I like was really exciting. It's always [UNKNOWN] when people in the press try to make types of comparisons but there are like one or two characters which Almost seems like [UNKNOWN] or references to games that exist within the site. [UNKNOWN] for instance, it reminds me of [UNKNOWN] and then solider 76 is a funniest thing ever because it's literally like you names solider 76 and it has like shifted and like running are you guys kinda enjoying Those little archetypes in the game? The hero design discussions are a blast. The initial ones where it's just free wheeling. But essentially the [INAUDIBLE] of 76 was, here we basically designed after a play test one night. And it was like you know, we really need That hero that really speaks to people that have like been playing a whole lot of Call of Duty. Especially because a lot of our potentially younger players, they didn't play Team Fortress back in the day. Most of the first person shooters or the modern military style shooters were like, hey, you know So, what would that hero look like? So [UNKNOWN] I was like duh, okay, we do it with the assault rifle. And then, it's like, well, yeah, we want to speak more towards someone very easy to understand, and it's like, hey, what's another thing we can give him? Well, the rocket launcher on a cooldown. All right, there we go. All right, that's another one. They were like, okay, well. It's something everyone's like when they first play this game, why can't I sprint. Okay, we'll give this guy sprint. So that's cool. And then we started coming up with crazy ideas for Ultimas. And we're like, wow, what if we auto aimed. And we're like wow. Cuz we were like, we gave Widowmaker the ability to see through walls, let's give another Traditional [INAUDIBLE] And that's what we did. That really all came together with that seed from that hero in one night and it just sort of clicked. A hero like that comes together super fast. And then there's Bastion. [INAUDIBLE] [LAUGH] More of like a lot more changes like to [INAUDIBLE] I think he's gone through [INAUDIBLE] I wanna say six [INAUDIBLE] since [INAUDIBLE] [INAUDIBLE] walls. [UNKNOWN] and grenades up in the air. And we premiered him at [UNKNOWN] with a little drone, tank drone thing. So, we ended up very well what he has now, which is great, because it fits very well with his transform, with the third super form, which is [UNKNOWN], and it's the ultimate form of what he already does, [UNKNOWN]. We didn't wanna toss out this [UNKNOWN] we had before, this