The time is now for the competitive players of Overwatch to hop in to the pool. The hero pool, that is! Season 21 is now underway, and it brings along with it the much-vaunted hero pools feature, which rotates the number of heroes available to play from week to week as we’ve reported before.
So what is this change meant to do? According to an in-house interview with principal game designer Scott Mercer, it’s all about making sure the meta stays fresh. “We get feedback from our players about how the meta doesn’t change often enough,” explained Mercer. “Hero pools are part of a solution to address players’ desire to have a constantly shifting meta.”
Players can expect hero pools to isolate certain characters from the roster for no longer than two weeks at a time, and characters who get significant balance changes won’t be made unavailable in the interest of letting players see how those changes affect the game. Ultimately, hero pools aren’t likely going to be a silver bullet for changing the meta, but are described as a tool for the devs to use and the team will adapt as things change.
"Every week when players log into Overwatch, it should feel fresh and different."
Competitive Season 21 has begun – with Hero Pools! Learn more about the philosophy and design of Hero Pools from Principal Game Designer, Scott Mercer.
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) March 5, 2020