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‘Overwatch’ is Getting a New Character and She Looks Awesome

Sure, you want to help out your Overwatch team. You’d just rather they take all the risk of dying while you soak up the points.

Good news, then: there’s a new hero just for you in developer Blizzard’s team-based shooter. Ana, mother of rocket-powered hero Pharah, is soon joining the fray, and she’s all about sniping people to heal them—or kill them.

Blizzard announced the new hero today after teasing her existence a few times on social media in the last couple of weeks. She’s a sniper who can deal damage to other players or stun them, but the major part of her role will be to tag teammates with darts that heal damage and give them boosts to their attack power in battle. She also has a grenade that can heal characters in the area or rob opponents of their own ability to heal. And she can put people to sleep briefly. Cool.

There’s a ton of info on how Ana will work on the Overwatch website, including her backstory—she was one of the original Overwatch founders years ago, but everybody thought she was killed. Now she’s changed from a deadly sniper to a healer, thanks to the traumas she’s suffered. If you’re playing on PC, you can opt into Blizzard’s Public Test Realm, where the developer lets players try out changes before they go out to the rest of the game. That suggests she probably will wind up in the PC public version of Overwatch really soon, and then go out to the Playstation 4 and Xbox One versions shortly thereafter. Here’s how to get in on the PC test.

What makes Overwatch work is team balance, and Ana potentially throws a big wrench into the existing gears. Blizzard has already made a few changes to existing heroes, and one wonders if Ana will render other healer-fighter characters, like the easily killed Zenyatta, obsolete. Saving people’s lives from halfway across the map with a rifle does look pretty badass.

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