New hero teased

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An after-action report filed by Ana Amari was recently declassified. The report about an operation codenamed, “WHITE DOME,” details that her strike team, consisting of Ana herself, Reinhardt, Torbjorn, and Private First Class Emre Sarioglu, were deployed to Istanbul to deal with omnic resistance. They were ambushed, but successfully overcame the combatants. Reinhardt was injured during the operation, but saved Torbjorn who had been seriously hurt. Beyond this there is no information on Ana’s or Emre Sarioglu’s role during the events.

Just prior to Blizzard’s tweet with the above information, Jeff Kaplan responded to a post on the community forums that asked for a hint for hero 27 saying, “ok. incoming. brace for it…” Is his use of “brace for it,” a hint as well, or was it only talking about the teaser tweet? Time will tell.

Earn rewards by watching OWL

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A program where viewers of Overwatch League games can earn League Points for watching the stream was rolled out on Wednesday. For every map a viewer watches on Twitch, OverwatchLeague.com, the OWL app, and MLG, they’ll receive 1 League Point. After each series, a small portion of random viewers will receive 100 League Points, enough to purchase a skin. We previously saw a similar system a few weeks back during some tests by Twitch. The only way the system works is to connect your Battle.net account to the related platform.

Personal anecdote, if you switch devices while you watch, you may not receive credit for watching the match. I was able to watch 9 maps on Thursday, but only received 5-6 points after moving about the house on different devices. When you do receive points, on Twitch you’ll receive a notification in their drop-down, and when you load Overwatch, a blue banner stating you earned points appears.

Cheer for teams on Twitch

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Twitch rolled out its new Cheer system for Overwatch League viewers as well this week. Using Bits, Twitch’s currency system, one may Cheer for teams in chat to acquire chat emotes for that team, or get random Overwatch-themed emotes if one spends 150 or more. The more Bits spent on a team, the more extravagant the team emote. For example, spending enough to get the “max” Philadelphia Fusion emote means you get a PDOMJNATE emote that moves around like a GIF from the pre-2000s internet.

Additionally, all Bits spent also go towards a community pot that provides in-game content when certain goals are met. The first goal is unlocking Tracer’s Away Skin at 40,000,000 Bits. As of this writing, the progress bar is over halfway to full, but the total progress lists 15,300,000. Once it reaches that 40 million milestone, we’ll find out how one actually receives the rewards. What we do know though is that one must Cheer (spend) at least 100 Bits in order to receive the skin once it becomes available.

There are also leaderboards that show which teams have earned the most Bits, and which users have spent the most. Note that all Bits go to Twitch and not the individual teams.

First Overwatch Puppy Rumble ends in upset

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The first ever Overwatch Puppy Rumble took place on Monday, an event to help promote pet adoption agencies around the country. A number of young pups were dressed up in costumes of the game’s heroes, and placed in a room designed to resemble the Gardens of Lijiang Tower for a game of capture the flag. On each side of the “map” was a toy with a flag wrapped around it, with the idea being that hopefully one of the puppies would carry it to the other side while they played.

Cast by the OWL casters, the adorable competition ended with the red team winning 1-0 because the blue team’s flag almost made it halfway to the other side of the map. Symmetra (Lulu) was the dominating force throughout the match, “defending” her flag vigorously by playing hard. You can watch all the action here.

All of the dogs were up for adoption when the event was created, and since it aired, all have already been adopted. Click here for the full roster.

Notable News

  • Hanzo’s new abilities are to a point where the team is comfortable assigning art resources to it, said Jeff Kaplan on the Overwatch forums. We haven’t seen much about this in a week or two, but last we heard was that a Volley of arrows would be replacing Scatter Arrow, and he’d get a disengage ability, which doesn’t sound all that unlike the Hunter-class ability in World of Warcraft.

  • Jeff shared the distribution of player ELO for season 8. The vast majority of players are between Silver and Diamond.

This Week on Overbuff

  • Miko wrote what she thought we can expect out of OWL teams in season 2 on our blog.

Community Content of the Week

  • A redditor made a deck of cards based on the Anniversary sprays.

  • Someone captured this hilarious Play of the Game from Korean Contenders.

  • Zenyatta walks after fans demanded it.