Blizzard had an amazing BlizzCon this year with tons of announcements for many of their beloved franchises. One of those exciting reveals centered the popular shooter Overwatch including a new map, new skins, and a brand new hero: Moira!
We got a chance to get our hands on the newest hero and her controversial correspondence within the world of Overwatch and we've got to say - the damage-heavy healer is ... well, she's the business! With Doomfist out now and fully playable, it only makes sense that the next big reveal be a support character. Little did we know that the newest healer would be so OP!
First let's break who Moira is and a little bit more about her history.
Moira is shrouded in controversy with her ties to Talon and Blackwatch after being ousted by the original Overwatch program for her morally ambiguous means at scientific discovery. The hyper-intelligent geneticist carried over her work to suit Talon's needs and was responsible for many of the in-game abilities as seen in characters like Reaper.
"Overwatch held back the pace of scientific discovery for decades. They believed my methods were too radical, too controversial."
Because of her intricate part in the evolution of the heroes we know from the game, it will be interesting to see how Blizzard plans to evolve her lore and what we can learn of her in the future. Until then, let's talk about what we know now, like how we know that she's a valuable hero to the roster.
Before we dive into how she plays, here's a basic look at her abilities and what she brings to the table in-match:
Using her left hand, Moira expends biotic energy to heal allies in front of her. Her right hand fires a long-range beam weapon that saps enemies’ health, healing Moira and replenishing her biotic energy.
Moira launches a rebounding biotic sphere; she can choose between a regeneration effect that heals the allies it passes through, or a decay effect that deals damage to enemies.
Moira quickly teleports a short distance.
Moira channels a long-range beam that both heals allies and bypasses barriers to damage her enemies.
Right off of the bat, her dual firing ability was notable - especially with the mobility offered with both of her hands in-use as well as the fact that there is no reload: bonus. While her left hand is her primary fire and used for healing, her right hand does long range damage. Immediately thoughts of Symmetra's beam came to mind, so for those that are intimately familiar with how the Portal expert runs mechanically - Moira will come very naturally.
Her healing ability is incredibly powerful but does gradually fade out through time. Luckily, it's fairly easy to replenish her healing ability by draining that of her enemies. She also has an ability called 'Fade' that feels very similar to Tracer. She's there then suddenly - she's not. This is perfect when wanting to sneak up on an enemy to begin draining their health. It also came in handy during a few key moments in the match when we needed to get away at a moment's notice. She may not be able to travel as far as Sombra per say, the ability still does come in handy as long as it is done smartly. Unfortunately, if an enemy player begins to sense a pattern, the set up for total obliteration is viable when Moira suddenly reappears. Whoops!
Her ultimate ability is called Coalescence and this is a game changer. The perfect counter to a wide variety of heroes, including the dreaded Pharah ult seen in her reveal trailer. Both healing and her damage abilities come out in one huge, solid fire. The beam damages enemies and heals allies simultaneously while providing an incredibly strong counter to even the shield-heavy heroes like Orisa and Reinhardt.
Our hands on impression set us in a casual no-limits match set up which gave a lot of freedom to test her out in a variety of ways. The drawback to this character is that she is incredibly "squishy", meaning easy to kill and not a whole lot of means to defend herself. She's an amazing character, but definitely one that takes a little mastering before players might feel comfortable using her skillfully in a match.
Unlike Lucio, her self-healing abilities are incredibly limiting, so she pairs well with a team that provides shielding such as Reinhardt, Orisa, or even Winston. Her damage was surprisingly effective, which makes her great for players that don't want to be stuck solely in a healing role. She's dynamic, but difficult to play with at first try. Like Ana, and even Mercy, Overwatch fans will want to practice with her a little bit before diving full on into competitive matches. She takes a little getting used to and a thorough understanding of her abilities in order to get everything out of her that she has to offer. And she offers a lot ... it's just a matter of putting those puzzle pieces together the correct way to build a stronger picture.
Plus ... she just looks badass. David Bowie fans, watch out! She's a rockstar and she both looks and sounds like one. She's powerful, and she knows it. For those that dig the lore-side of the game and like to learn more about the title's backstory, she's a fun one to step inside of. Her attitude, voice lines, and overall demeanor are very specific and make her enjoyable to play.
Bottom line - Moira is the support character that many have been dreaming of. If Zenyatta went and had a rowdy 'ol time with Symmetra and Tracer, Moira is the result. And you know what? It works!
Moira will be going into PTR (Public Test Realm) here in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!