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A healing grenade launcher, rocket boots, and reality-bending walls are sure to shake up the meta.
Overwatch started out with just 21 heroes back in May 2016, but we’re already up to hero number 30. Blizzard announced a new hero, named Baptiste, this Monday, and it looks like we’re getting another healer character. Like previous Overwatch character reveals, there’s lots of info to parse through. Here’s everything we know about Baptiste.
Who is Baptiste, Overwatch’s new hero?
Baptiste (full name Jean-Baptiste Augustin) is the 30th hero in Overwatch, a man of Haitian descent, some sort of healer (more on that later) and an ex-Talon operative. If you don’t remember Talon, it’s the nebulous bad guy organization lead by Doomfist trying to rule the world in Overwatch’s absence, and it’s good friends with the likes of Reaper and Widowmaker.
Baptiste’s identity was first teased in a letter from Trung Le Nguyen, who had found the log from a missing Talon strike team belonging to Captain D. Cuerva. Cuerva had evidently been away on a mission to locate and “retrieve” Baptiste, who we learn was a former Talon operative. Cuerva clearly had hopes of bringing in Baptiste, who previously trained under Cuerva. Unfortunately for the Talon captain, Baptiste was clearly a few steps ahead and eliminated a few of Cuerva’s men from the equation, and eventually Cuerva himself. Judging by the dates of Cuerva’s log and the original transmission to Talon leadership, Baptiste has been out of the Talon game for at least half a year.
Baptiste origin story
In a new Overwatch animated cinematic, we get a good look at the tragic backstory of Baptiste. As one of 30 million children orphaned by the Omnic War, Baptiste learned early on to accept any help given to him: “Even the devil, you took it. It wasn’t complicated. At least that was the lie I told myself.”
Baptiste spent some amount of his young adult life as a Talon agent but clearly began doubting his position after propagating the horrors of war he had endured as a child. Check out the rest of the video below.
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There’s a brief video of Baptiste’s abilities on display, plus Overwatch lead designer Jeff Kaplan took 10 minutes to describe how Baptiste will work. Check out the videos and our rundown below.
"No dying on my watch."
Get your first aid on Baptiste's abilities and playstyle. Now healing on the PTR!
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) February 26, 2019
So here’s how Baptiste will be rocking the battlefield in Overwatch.
Biotic Launcher: Fires a three-round shot that does heavy damage depending on accuracy. An alternate fire mode also launches a healing grenade similar to Ana’s, just without the damaging effect her biotic grenade has.
Regenerative Burst: If Lucio’s healing aura and Brigitte’s shield charge had a baby, this is what it would look like. Baptiste can activate the burst to heal nearby allies slowly over time, which should prove helpful in bottleneck situations.
Immortality Field: For such a cool ability, it’s stunning that it’s just a regular ability Baptiste can use at will. It’s pretty much what it sounds like. Baptiste tosses up a drone (which can be damaged and killed) that emits a circular shield. Any ally inside it can only have their health reduced to 10 percent their full amount, but not die. This will infuriate Bastion players who love to choke bottlenecks with heavy fire.
Exo Boots: Baptiste has some fancy kicks that let him launch about 10 feet into the air, affording him some mobility that few healers have.
Ultimate Ability: Amplification Matrix: Much like the Immortality Field, the Amplification Matrix essentially boosts any projectile that passes through it. So a Tracer could eliminate a fully healed Roadhog with one clip of ammo, and any healing projectiles are doubled.
When is Baptiste coming to Overwatch?
There’s no exact release date for Baptiste yet, but he’s available on the PTR for Overwatch, which is where PC players can play unofficial matches that allows the Overwatch developer team to test gameplay and fix bugs. So you can play Baptiste right now if you don’t mind a little jank with your healing grenades. Expect Baptiste to land probably sometime in March, given past hero reveals.
Joseph Knoop is a gaming writer for Daily Dot, a native Chicagoan, and a slave to all things Overwatch. He co-founded the college geek culture outlet ByteBSU, then interned at Game Informer, and now writes for a bunch websites his parents have never heard of.