It was just yesterday that we received a trailer for Overwatch‘s 31st hero Sigma and now we’ve been given the full details on the new hero’s skillset and attacks. Important deets first: Sigma is a tank hero and will be able to utilize a shield barrier, just like Reinhardt and Orisa but there’s also something unique about his version of it. Read on…
Let’s start with a bit of background on Sigma. His real name is Siebren de Kuiper and if you’re uncultured like me, that’s a Dutch name which makes him the first Overwatch hero born in the Netherlands. He was formerly an astrophysicist and it was an experiment gone wrong that gave him his abilities (plus some psychological damage). After being quarantined in a government facility, he’s “rescued” by Talon and uses him as a living weapon.
Okay, now that you’re up to speed with Sigma’s backstory, it’s time to talk about the more attractive side of him: his playstyle.
As mentioned earlier, Sigma is a tank character so his main defensive skill is called Experimental Barrier. The interesting part about the Experimental Barrier is that it acts as a projectile. Hold down the ability key/button and the barrier keeps moving in the direction you’re aiming, upon release the barrier stops. When the barrier is up, pressing the ability key again will cancel the barrier.
The game-changer here is that Sigma’s barrier is really versatile in the sense that it can be angled however you like. So that problem with Pharah’s ult raining from above can be turned against her by placing a barrier right in front of her face, deflecting her own damage back to her. That’s just one of the many barrier’s functions.
Sigma’s secondary defensive skill is called Kinetic Grasp and it’s similar to Genji’s Deflect but instead of sending attacks back at enemies, you turn them into your shields. The skill converts 1/3 of damage absorbed into temporary shield capped at a maximum of 400 shield energy. The temporary shield decays at 7 shields per second so it won’t be there for long but in a tight spot, it definitely can be a lifesaver.
A tank hero still needs an offensive skill to dish out some damage and Sigma’s Accretion is one hell of an attack. You basically gather up a bunch of debris and throw it at an enemy. The attack even has a bit of splash damage but the best thing about it is that it also knocks down enemies who are directly hit. The further the projectile flies, the further it knocks an enemy down. Also, it ignores Genji’s Deflect, D.va’s Defense Matrix, and Sigma’s own Kinetic Grasp.
The “gravity-defying” part of Sigma’s character is nowhere as obvious as his ultimate. Called Gravitic Flux, Sigma’s Ult will lift enemies into the air for about 2 seconds and then slam them into the ground. It’s an AOE skill that’s targeted similar to how Doomfist’s Ult works so it can be used for multiple enemies. Another cool thing about Sigma’s Ult is that while using it, he will fly up and keep flying until the part where enemies are slammed down.
While suspended due to Sigma’s Ult, enemies cannot move except for Moira and Reaper who can escape using their skills. The slam will take away 50% of an enemies maximum HP which is a crazy amount of damage when you take into account that you and your teammates can attack them while they’re being suspended. The ult is balanced by the fact that it’s telegraphed and so opponents can quickly evade the AoE.
(Update) Apparently, Sigma’s ult can also lift people off the payload for a few seconds, resulting in potential last-second wins for the defenders (via Reddit’s 8uzz1n).
Balls To The Walls
Sigma’s main weapon is his Hyperspheres, which are two gravity balls of some sort that implode after a short duration. The means that the balls are pretty much medium-ranged attacks but it’s also worth noting that these balls can bounce off walls. Another cool thing about this attack is that it creates a mini gravity pull towards its centre. It’ll be interesting to see how players use that.
To sum it all up, Sigma is an awesome new addition to the Overwatch roster. His unique barrier and crazy stunning capabilities will definitely be a game-changer, especially when taking into account the new Role Lock which will be implemented soon. If you’re playing on PC, you can test him out in the PTR right now. According to Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan, Sigma will be fully released very soon.