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Play Overwatch just released a Developer Update where Jeff Kaplan discusses some upcoming changes to Overwatch. The update focuses on changes to the communication wheel and efforts to reduce queue times.
The Communication Wheel
Currently, players can open a “communication wheel” during games to send different messages to their teammates without speaking or typing. Messages such as “hello”, “thank you”, and “I need healing” are all options. There aren’t a whole lot of choices at the moment, however.
Kaplan states in the Developer Update that players will soon have more options to customize their communication wheel. Options like “fall back”, “attack”, and “sorry,” among many others, are coming. In addition to this, Overwatch‘s heroes will have voice lines for each new communication command.
In addition to the communication wheel, Kaplan discusses an upcoming change to queuing for competitive Overwatch matches. As Luka Doncic stated recently, “the worst thing in overwatch is 10 min search for the game then somebody leave the game”. According to Kaplan, he’s not the only one upset about this happening. It looks like the Overwatch team has heard these concerns.
Players who were in a game that was canceled due to someone leaving early will be placed in a priority queue if they choose to queue up again immediately after getting kicked out of the game. This will help reduce queue times for these players. This will be especially helpful for damage players, who often have to wait up to 10 minutes to find a game.
It looks like the Overwatch team is all working from home during the coronavirus pandemic, and they will continue to deliver updates and new content to the game despite working from home. These changes should hit the Public Test Region (PTR) soon. Don’t expect to see them live for at least another couple of weeks, however.