The new version 1.25 update for Overwatch makes matches a friendlier place, along with a spate of balance changes and other tweaks. The biggest change comes in the form of Endorsements, a tool you can use after a match to recognize fellow players for their good teamwork, sportsmanship, and shot-calling. You can also endorse players from the opposing team for sportsmanship.
The incentives to embrace the endorsement system work both ways. Endorsing other players gets you bonus XP, and the more endorsements you get from other players, the higher your Endorsement Level will rise. You can get up to level 5, and claim rewards based on your level.
Other changes include more custom Looking For Group perimeters that let you pick among roles and team compositions, and even the new endorsement level. Career profiles also receive some new privacy settings.
Finally, Offense and Defense hero roles have been merged into a single “Damage” category. The patch notes mention a wide variety of balance changes, but the most come to Symmetra, who is now part of the new Damage role. That includes a new primary and secondary attack, new abilities, and a new Ultimate. It’s quite the overhaul.
“The goal of these changes is to move Symmetra to her new damage role and make her more flexible and viable across more areas of the game than she was previously,” said a note of developer commentary in the update. “Now that Symmetra is no longer a support hero, she is expected to be able to dish out heavy damage, and these changes allow for her to do so. She should be more powerful and interesting in more team compositions and maps, and she should also be stronger on offense and defense.”
Meanwhile, Blizzard may be teasing yet another new hero for the long-running hero shooter. All we have to go on is a suspicious-looking boulder, which very well could fit nicely into the new Damage character category.