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The last Overwatch Developer Update promised big changes going forward, including a new Experimental Mode. Big Daddy Jeff Kaplan (not his official title) doesn’t lie, as the game’s first Experimental Mode will go live on all platforms tomorrow. It’s a pretty drastic change, too, as it adds in a new form of Role Queue: one Tank, two Healers, and three Damage heroes.
Kaplan had hinted in January that this change was coming before today’s Developer Update went live, but he also said the team had floated this idea back around November 2018 in an effort to make damage queue times faster. That role usually has a significantly longer wait time when compared to the other two roles. Apparently this change was highly controversial within the team as some were vehemently for or against it.
This is the community’s chance to test it so they can see if queue times change and if it is good for the game overall. Given how it is such a drastic alteration of the game’s core, it would radically change the role of “off Tanks” like Roadhog, Zarya, and D.Va. These heroes will see big balance changes to accompany this mode to make them more like main Tanks and not off Tanks.
Of course, there is always the chance of this being just a simple test. It is the essence of the mode, after all. However, if this specific Experimental Mode makes it into the game, players will get an idea of how Blizzard will try to balance the game from the buffs and nerfs exclusive to this mode.
Kaplan also reassured that players to not panic as well as to remember that this mode will count for seasonal events since it is played on your main account. He even hinted of a new event coming soon, which has already been leaked. It looks like Ashe is going to get a Mardi Gras event to accompany the holiday’s real life start date.