Echo has been revealed as Overwatch‘s 32nd hero in a new trailer that marked her arrival to Blizzard’s competitive first-person shooter.
The omnic — the Overwatch universe’s version of a self-aware robot — first appeared in an animated short called “Reunion” in 2018 and had been the subject of speculation as an upcoming hero for months, especially since early Overwatch concept art included an Echo-like character among its designs. The trailer describes Echo as “an evolutionary robot programmed with a rapidly adapting artificial intelligence, Echo represents the cutting edge of technology.”
As previously revealed in “Reunion,” Echo was rescued by McCree and now works with the Overwatch team. Echo also appeared in the cinematic for Overwatch 2, further suggesting that the character would soon be playable. She will also be playable in the sequel, which doesn’t have a release date as of yet. Luckily, fans won’t have to wait as long as that to get their hands on the new hero.
Echo’s history goes back to the Omnic Crisis — a huge robot rebellion — that led to the creation of the Overwatch team in the first place. As fans of Overwatch lore know, the Omnic Crisis was a world war fought 30 years before the start of the game that devastated the world and had long-lasting effects that are still felt in the game’s present. While peace was eventually struck between humanity and the omnics, tensions have risen again and fears of a second war act as a backdrop for the game.
In the trailer, Dr. Mina Liao, Echo’s creator, is revealed to be one of the original founders of the Overwatch team, joining after she helped create the omnics that rebelled against humanity. We learn that she died in some kind of lab accident or attack before the start of the game, but her conscience lives on inside of Echo. It’s a pretty colorful backstory to say the least, and more will likely be revealed in the next few weeks as Echo arrives to the game in full.
Here’s everything else we know about Echo:
Overwatch – Echo Release Date
Echo is currently available on Overwatch‘s PC PTR servers. The character will be released to the public on April 14.
Overwatch – Echo Abilities
Echo is a DPS character who sports some unique abilities.
Her primary fire is a slower moving series of projectiles that requires you to carefully aim and lead your shots. Much like Zenyatta’s orbs, they are potentially devastatingly effective, but they can be hard to land.
Echo’s alternate fire options are even more interesting. One of them allows her to fire a concentrated beam that does relatively minor damage when an opponent is above half health. However, if you fire it at an opponent or shield that is below half-health, the beam does significantly more damage. It’s a fantastic way to finish off weakened opponents and defenses. She’s also able to fire some powerful sticky bombs and float and glide through the air for a limited amount of time.
What really has everyone talking, though, is Echo’s Ultimate ability. She’s basically able to become a copy of any member of the opposing team (except for another Echo) for about 15 seconds. Along with being able to use that character’s abilities during that time, she’ll also be able to charge their Ultimate at a significantly higher rate. It’s actually possible to fire multiple ultimates while you’re a copy of the character. Needless to say, that opens up some incredible strategic possibilities.
Overwatch – Echo Gameplay
For a breakdown of how Echo operates within the game, be sure to check out this developer diary from the Overwatch team which dives deep into the character’s design.
You can also watch Echo’s lore introduction via the video below: