Blizzard has so far made good on its promise to regularly release new heroes for Overwatch. In fact, “regularly” is an incredibly apt description—starting with the release of Ana in July 2016, a new hero has been released every four months like clockwork, nearly to the day in some cases. The most recent addition, Moira, debuted this past November, which means the release of Hero 27 was logically expected for March. It seems the pattern will continue, as the Overwatch team dropped its first big, lore-related hint toward the identity of the upcoming character yesterday.
Posed as a declassified “After-Action Report” written by Ana regarding a messy operation by the old Overwatch team, the events at “White Dome” apparently caused cast member Torbjörn to lose his arm, and required an act of “conspicuous bravery” by Reinhardt to save him from death. However, the most significant finding is a name that has apparently never been referenced within Overwatch before: Private First Class Emre Sarioglu, an ostensibly Turkish-born Overwatch operative that is mentioned only once in the report, very briefly.
[DECLASSIFIED] After-Action Report: Operation “WHITE DOME” pic.twitter.com/fvnUQQEFDC
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) February 23, 2018
Naturally, many players and fans expect Emre to be the newest hero. Details wouldn’t preclude him from being a tank, which would fit in with the current cycle of hero introductions (two offensive and two support heroes have been added so far, versus only one tank), and he would represent Turkish heritage in the increasingly diverse cast of Overwatch.
Some, however, remain skeptical. When hints leading up to the release of Orisa a year ago first began, they centered on Efi Oladele, a child prodigy in technology from Numbani. A portion of the community believed that she would somehow be the next hero, until it turned out that her child-like robotic creation would be the one joining the fight. Similarly, some believe that Emre is just a red herring, and that Hero 27 will be another character related to Operation “White Dome” somehow—potentially even the omnic that Reinhardt and Torbjörn fought against.
Whomever the newest hero ends up being, we at least won’t have to wait long to find out. Expect more hints to trickle out between now and the inevitable release in March.