RoadHog – How He Defines Overwatch League’s Playoff Meta
At the start of 2020, the hero pools were revealed for Overwatch League. Many people hoped that it will be possible to track the usage of herpes every week. It would show the way teams participating in the tournament were able to deal with the forced meta-breaking of the hero pools. However, things weren’t working in people’s favor when it came to this.
Continuous Meta Change
This year’s meta was continuously changing, all depending on hero pools. The stratification of this year’s meta is chaotic, especially when you compare it to that of 2018 and 2019. When you check out the stratification, you can see that the 2018 and 2019 editions had one very visible meta shift, and that was what ended up defining the season.
It took place between the 3rd and 4th stages in the inaugural season, and then in 2019, the GOATs meta was broken towards the 3rd stage’s finish and the stage title of Shanghai Dragons. Additionally, the 4th stage and playoffs had some 2-2-2 role restrictions applied to them, while Sigma was added as a new hero at the time.
For 2020, everything is chaotic and it’s hard to keep up with what’s happening. People who play games can feel this too. Some of the most used heroes ended up being banned by the hero pools, which ended up causing urgent adjustments, also known as “meta”, to not exist anymore.
Every week, there seemed to be a method that looked like the right way to win. However, it didn’t offer any room for improvement. Not to mention, since the pools are at their worst at the beginning of the season, performing any analysis is very difficult. As such, people didn’t know what to do to win the game.
At the very least, in the tournaments that the league moved toward in the back half of this season, hero pools have relaxed. Thanks to that, the first week of the playoffs from Overwatch League had a meta shift that was quite interesting to see.
The Most Used Heroes in the Playoffs
The one on top of the most-played hero list for the playoffs is D.Va, standing at 69%. But while this is the most used hero overall, Roadhog is the one in the spotlight as it was the defining hero for this year’s playoffs. The hero had been used in many team formations, even being used alongside D.Va, Sigma, Orisa, or Reinhardt.
Fans of League of Legends already know what the patch released on August 13 brought to the game. Roadhog was one of the heroes that received some buffs, whereas other heroes such as Orisa got nerfs. Although the four-meter radios have been buffed to five meters ever since, the nerfs Orisa got in the late season are important still. Orisa was the second most played hero, at 40.3%, being right behind Sigma, which was the most played hero of the entire year.
Considering Orisa was nerfed and fell, the shield-heavy composition had to suffer a lot. Add that to the Roadhog addition in the composition – that is the opposite idea of a double-shield. Roadhog is not relying on barrier strength. Instead, Roadhog can annihilate the carries before any tank is able to do something, which is a nice strategy for teams that have a Roadhog player.
The Most Successful Team Using Roadhog
Seoul Dynasty was the leading champion of the Asian bracket that used Roadhog, and it was all thanks to the performance of Hong “Gesture” Jae-hee. He is the main tank of the team, and that’s what made things so amazing for them. The team also has two main tanks, and people loved seeing the shift to a Roadhog composition.
Shanghai Dragons’ main tank Lee “Fearless” Eui-seok is using Winston, which is a great counter to the Roadhog flex tank compositions. Although they won against New York Excelsior, their opponents didn’t use Roadhog, but rather Winston and Wrecking Ball, as well as D.Va.
Washington Justice also came with an amazing combination, respectively a combination of Roadhog and Zarya. Thanks to this amazing team formation, they succeeded in upsetting Paris Eternal.
Roadhog is not the only hero with such a massive effect on the first week of playoffs. In fact, Sombra also had a huge effect on it, as it was the second most played hero in the past weekend, sitting at 56.2%. Teams that were successful during this time were using Sombras properly and knew how to coordinate with the other team members to take over the opponents. Usually, Sombra was used in combination with Reaper, which created the meta DPS option.
Teams knew how to use their heroes and what combinations are going to be successful, and the results are proof of that.