Overwatch, the multiplayer first-person shooter video game by Blizzard, has been updated with a higher tick rate as per the demands of the players. The video game was launched back in May earlier this year for the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Microsoft Windows. While the game has gained much popularity in just a few months, its slow tick rate has been the major downside for the game.
When the game was launched, it had a tick rate of 21 Hz. This means that the player’s actions were communicated back to the game’s server only 21 times per second. To illustrate how low this is, popular shooter video games such as CS: GO have a tick rate of 64 Hz while BattleField 4 has an option to set the tick rate to 60 Hz or 120 Hz.
A higher tick rate leads to a better in-game experience for the players. At the same time though, it does require higher bandwidth as well which is one of the suggested reasons as to why Blizzard went with a slow tick rate in the first place. However, Blizzard finally listened to its audience and released an update on 12 August 2016 for Overwatch. The update rolled out new configurations for the game that incorporated a higher tick rate of 63 Hz. Today, the studio has launched a video explaining what the latest update will mean for the game.
Lead engineer for the game, Tim Ford, accompanies senior engineer Phillip Orwig in the video to explain the details behind the high bandwidth update. The engineers describe how the update will affect gameplay and how players with poorer internet connections will not be affected by this update. The update will incorporate slower internet speeds and ensure that it does not adversely affect poor connections.
While the video covers both the basic and technical details of the update, we can safely say that most players will not notice a lot of difference in gameplay. The update for Overwatch was launched in some regions only (including the US and UK) last month. With time though, he high bandwidth update has been gradually rolled out to other regions as well and it should be available globally by now.
You can take a look at what the engineers of the game had to say about the update in the video here.