There is a new hero coming to Overwatch! While all other characters on the roster have legacy within the Overwatch universe, many participating in the precursory Omnic Crisis, the latest character, Orisa, is quite literally brand new.
Orisa is a remodeled OR-15 robot built by Numbani native and robotics prodigy Efi Oladele (my theory is that she is a unique OR-15-A, with the “A” indicating a subtype of the original model, hence her name). At a stunning 11 years of age, Efi stopped Doomfist from wreaking more havoc in her home city, making her a local savior and also earning another accolade as the first Omnic built by a human.
In play, Orisa is known as an “anchor tank,” a title previously only bestowed to Reinhardt. While Winston claims the other “main tank” role, he is used more for backline harassment, taking down healers and snipers, while attack characters take down tanks on the frontline. Teams clash at choke points, usually outplaying one another to gain an upper hand to win games, but if anyone watched Blizzard’s Overwatch World Cup last year, you would have noticed that every, every team composition featured Reinhardt, as he was absolutely essential in defending squishier characters.
Orisa will serve as either a replacement or supplement to Reinhardt in team compositions, as her toolkit allows her to place a 900 HP Protective Barrier via an arcing projectile. Though not as meaty as Reinhardt’s 2000 HP shield, Orisa’s shield can be placed anywhere and has a fairly quick cooldown time. On the defensive side, Orisa also has an ability to become an immovable object with Fortify. This ability reduces all sources of damage by 50% and cancels out any abilities that would otherwise move her, including Reinhardt’s Charge, Ana’s Sleep Dart, Roadhog’s Hook, Pharah’s Concussive Blast, and others.
On the offensive side of things, Orisa sports a Fusion Driver instead of a right arm, which sends out 150 shots in rapid succession before needing a reload. It’s important to note that Orisa’s main weapon is a projectile weapon and is not a hitscan type, so you’ll have to lead your shots with moving characters or focus on larger targets. Orisa also gets the newest “boop” ability in the game with Halt! which is a lot like Zarya’s ultimate, Graviton Surge. This projectile, which acts as her alt-fire and players can detonate at any time after launching, pulls enemies towards its center, pulling them from out of hiding places. It’s got a fairly good range and can be used for dislodging snipers and environmental kills. It’s essentially the opposite of Pharah’s Concussive Blast.
And that’s not all. Orisa’s Ultimate Ability, Supercharger, is a little bit Ana’s Nano Boost and Mercy’s damage boost from the Caduceus Staff. When activated, Orisa places a beacon that increases the damage of all characters (herself included) of all team members in line of sight. This ability lasts roughly 15-20 seconds, but can be stopped by the enemy team should they destroy the beacon. Coordinated teams will make good use of this ability to smash enemy teams at critical chokepoints, either to defend an objective or break through an enemy’s defenses.
The introduction of Orisa is ready to shake up Overwatch in a major way. Team compositions will be completely overhauled, especially for competitive players. Reinhardt’s absence and Orisa’s increased mobility will likely see a push for more dive-oriented compositions, but that all depends on how well teams can organize to infiltrate backlines. The coolest part is how the players are going to react to her, both in fan works and in the game itself. In our gallery here, you’ll find some pictures of her skins and victory poses, and over at Imgur you can pick up the emotes and highlight intro, too.
Orisa becomes an official part of the Overwatch family on March 21, 2017 on all platforms.
Kyle Gaddo is a community management professional for Novy Unlimited and Overwatch enthusiast. Big fan of good friends, fun times, and moving the payload. Follow him on Twitter.