It looks like Overwatch will be seeing even more changes to the way wins and ties are evaluated in competitive play, after just recently having new changes implemented to the system last week in Patch 1.10.
In a new blog post shared today on Blizzard’s Overwatch blog, Principal Designer Scott Mercer laid out some tentative plans for future changes that the Overwatch design team would like to make in regards to what is considered a win/loss/tie in certain objective-based game modes, aiming to fix certain problems that members of the community had expressed negative sentiments towards.
In the old system, before Patch 1.10 went live last week, a team had to fully capture one whole objective more than their opponent to secure a victory – anything less and the game would result in a tie. Many players found this system to be unsatisfying, especially on maps such as Hanamura, leading to Blizzard making the first change.
In the current Overwatch system, victories are now based solely on the percent progress made by the team, making ties tremendously rare. This rule also has issues, though, as certain specific conditions can lead to games ending suddenly and awkwardly for many players; if Team A is on defense and prevents Team B from ever gaining any capture progress, then when Team A is on offense they only need to reach 1% capture progress to instantly win the game, which felt abrupt and unfair to some players.
So, the new change proposed is that teams would need to secure at least 33% overall progress in a round in order to be considered for win/loss conditions, which would then still be considered at a percent-by-percent level difference between team progress. Here are some examples of how the system would apply in different Overwatch scenarios, provided by Blizzard:
Team A attacks the first objective on Hanamura, but only gains 10% progress after a really rough offensive round.
Team B then attacks, but they can only gain 20%.
This is a TIE. Neither team achieved the minimum of 33%.
Team A attacks the first objective on Hanamura, and gains 90% progress. (So close!)
Team B attacks, and only gains 40%. progress.
Team A WINS, as they had a minimum of 33% and more progress than their opponent.
Team A attacks the second objective on Hanamura, and fully captures it with 3:00 left.
Team B attacks the second objective on Hanamura, and captures it in overtime with 0:00 left.
Team A now is back on the attack, trying to take the first objective. They can only reach 20% progress after their time bank of 3:00 elapses. This is a TIE. They did not meet the minimum target of 33% progress. If Team A had reached 33%, then they would have won the match.
This change would mean slightly more ties than in the current system, although still much less than the previous pre-patch-1.10 system, which saw a staggering 6% tie rate in competitive. It is hoped that this system will improve clarity for both offense and defense, when it is shipped into the game in a future patch.
Players are encouraged to give feedback on any current or future changes to their favorite Blizzard games on the forums at Battle.net.