Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan Discusses The Future, New Features, in a New Developer Update

Overwatch is coming next year, but Blizzard is already talking of the game’s future in a Developer Update video. Along the way, they alleviated a few of the major concerns of eager gamers.

Rocking quite a good-looking beard, Jeffrey Kaplan of Blizzard addressed some topics the community has been talking about. The major one: additional post-launch content. The development team has had ideas for more maps and heroes, but “… Decided the best way to add them to the game is to patch them in as free content and not as DLC.”

So, no paid DLC – at least not of the gameplay type, but cosmetic items are still fair game. That’s something we (and our wallets) can’t complain about. Those are some good customer-friendly business practices from Blizzard. It puts some other publishers to shame (we’re looking at you, EA).

But that’s not all. As requested by the community, a music volume slider will be added. People who, just like me, love to hear their own mixtape while playing will be happy with this feature. That’s not to say Overwatch doesn’t sound good. The development team, Kaplan says, has been all about that soundtrack. PC gamers will also be pleased to know that sound will be working in the background while they’re tabbed out.

A Kill Feed, as in many popular FPS games, is something the development team is considering. “We don’t have a strong resistance to it, there’s not some deep philosophical reason why it’s not there right now. It’s just not a feature we’ve gotten to, but it is a feature we plan to add,” says Kaplan. It is possible to press Tab to have a look at who’s alive and dead, but a Kill Feed would inform the player of what’s happening in the moment: “Players really want that real-time information with every kill, to know when exactly did a player die.”

Clarifying concerns about the score screen, Kaplan stated that the team is working on an objective score. This feature has only been available for the attacking team, but they want to make it so that it is accessible for the defending team as well. The scoreboard doesn’t have many changes planned beyond stabilizing the idea of being ‘on fire.’ Being ‘on fire’ happens when you are on a roll with a few great plays, and your little portrait lights up in flames. This hasn’t been consistent, though:

“Right now, there are some tuning issues with fire, so it’s not very reliable. […] We have a lot of refinements we want to do to the fire system that we think will make it so that the fire becomes a more reliable way to understand who’s performing at a really high level in the match.”

Kaplan approached a few other minor details, such as the game’s kill cam. Check it out, along with the rest of the developer update, in the video below.

Future beta plans were not discussed, but we assume that’s because 5 days ago Blizzard announced the Overwatch Closed Beta would go offline until mid-to-late January.

The worldwide release date for Overwatch is June 21, 2016.

We at The Games Cabin appreciate this kind of feedback from developers and publishers. What do you think? Tell us your opinion in the comments section down below.


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