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Overwatch 2Jul 17, 2018 2:55 pm CT

Overwatch’s newest hero Hammond will be wrecking everything starting July 24

Update: We have a release date! Expect to see Wrecking Ball in the game on July 24.

Overwatch’s latest hero has officially been announced and…he’s a hamster. A space hamster. Look as a fan of the Mass Effect franchise, I really can’t dismiss a good space hamster story when I see it. So what’s up with Hammond — or more correctly, Wrecking Ball? Jeff Kaplan hopped on the latest Developer Update to give us all the details on the unexpected new hero.

Hammond comes from Horizon Lunar Colony, having hitched a ride with Winston on the way off the station during the ape revolt that famously sent Winston Earth-bound. But while Winston ended up at Watchpoint: Gibraltar, Hammond’s self-made pod landed somewhere else entirely — on the outskirts of Junkertown in Australia. There, he modified his escape pod into a mech and proceeded to whoop the snot out of everyone that chose to challenge him in gladiatorial combat.

They didn’t know he was a hamster, mind you.

Hammond doesn’t speak, but he has a variety of jaw-dropping abilities at his disposal. He’s a Tank hero, and he can shift between a quadruped and ball mode, increasing his maximum movement speed via the Roll ability. While in ball mode, Wrecking Ball can use the Grappling Claw ability to grab onto terrain and rapidly swing around the area. This enables high speed collisions that both damage and knock back enemies. While in the air, the Piledriver ability will send Wrecking Ball hurtling back to the ground below, damaging enemies and launching them upward. He also has his own protection with the Adaptive Shield ability, which gives him temporary personal shields — and the amount increases with more enemies nearby.

All of this sounds amazing, but his Ultimate ability sounds absolutely nuts. Minefield is a zoning ability that deploys a massive field of proximity mines. If anyone happens to step into a mine, they’re met with explosive results. The mines do take a little while to arm, and they’re both visible and audible to the enemy team before they go live — so you’ll have plenty of warning to get the heck out of the area and avoid the chaos. It seems like a really good way to block a handy escape route on any of Overwatch’s maps.

Wrecking Ball sounds like a lot of fun. He isn’t a solid brick wall of slow-moving muscle and steel, he’s a highly mobile Tank with a particularly zany set of skills. Part of the reason I enjoy playing Winston so much is his ability to leap and bound around the map with effortless ease — I think Wrecking Ball is going to be even more fun to play. He might not be the Junkertown Queen that people had hoped for, but honestly, I’m kind of down for some wacky comic relief right about now. Part of Overwatch’s appeal is its fast-paced combat and its sense of lighthearted fun — Hammond ticks off all those boxes in spades. Or rather, Wrecking Ball does — I don’t know, I’m probably still going to call the little guy Hammond. His origin story is also available for viewing, and it’s just as adorable as you’d expect.

I…can’t not love that. If you’d like to check out Wrecking Ball for yourself, you’re in luck — he’s available to play now on the Overwatch PTR.

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