With the recent patch that was released for Overwatch, the focal point of the update was undoubtedly the new hero being added into the mix, the punch-happy Doomfist. While buffs and nerfs to everyone's favorites were likely kept up with as usual, a lesser-acknowledge change to the respawn timers in the game had some players looking for further clarification.
The changes made to the respawn timers dealt with the difference between attackers and defenders that were occupying a point, specifically related to how many of them were on the point and for how long.
"Adjusted the respawn timing to limit defensive stalling strategies when the offensive team has a clear advantage and plays aggressively," read the recent patch notes, an explanation that seemed to raise more questions than it cleared up.
Thankfully, Overwatch's Principal Designer Scott Mercer answered questions about the change and made players aware of a respawn system that they might not have even known about in the first place. His explanation for the system and the changes that were made to it can be seen below:
There was an existing system that slowly increased the defender respawn time in the case where there are more attackers than defenders on an objective for 30 seconds. The defender respawn time then increased in a linear fashion up to a maximum when the attackers held an advantage for 90 seconds. We simply retuned the timing so that the increased defender respawn time starts after 15 seconds of attacker advantage, and also reaches the maximum possible increase of defender spawn time at 75 seconds.
If it's still a bit unclear as to what exactly the changes do, Mercer also provided a helpful example of the system in action.
"If attackers have an advantage for 10 seconds, then defenders regain it for 5 seconds, the "attacker advantage timer" is now at 5 seconds," Mercer wrote on the Overwatch forums. "If the attackers then get a few kills to regain advantage then after 10 more seconds the 'attacker advantage timer' reaches 15 seconds and defender respawn time begins to slowly increase."
The point of the system and the new changes are to reduce the effectiveness of defenders trying to stall out games by popping into the objective one at a time to create just a bit of opposition while they wait for their team to show up.
Most players in the forums who responded to Mercer's clarification seemed pleased with the changes that would help grant a quicker win to teams that clearly hold an advantage. With meta gameplay shifting more towards Winston and other tanky heroes who can stall out easier, this will likely be a welcome change to prevent such tactics.