You can now add user-generated content to Overwatch’s already packed universe.
The new “Workshop” mode will let you create your own game modes, content, and even heroes in Overwatch, thanks to a new surprise update.
The Overwatch Workshop is a new section of the custom game browser that that works as a “scripting mode” to let players create their own game modes and content, Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan revealed in a developer update released earlier today.
“You can even prototype your own Overwatch hero using this system,” said Kaplan.
The Workshop will let players flex their creative muscles by scripting Overwatch games with certain gameplay rules or win conditions to create custom game modes. Players can also adjust the abilities and movements of the game’s existing heroes, letting players test hero ability combinations or prototype new abilities altogether for an all-new hero.
Kaplan made it clear that the Workshop is not a map editor, which is how most other games let their players create custom game modes. Players cannot alter things like map geometry or import custom visual assets, but it does give them the freedom to tinker with the game’s logic and mechanics running behind the scenes.
One example of this is Molten Floor — a custom game mode made by the developers that came with the update –which is basically a game of “The Floor Is Lava” in Overwatch that utilizes Torbjorn’s Molten Core ability.
However, using the Workshop’s custom scripting won’t be easy, warned Kaplan. While the Workshop is free for all Overwatch players to use, it will be more accessible to those who have experience in programming or are familiar with scripting engines.
“Really anybody who understands the logic of game-making and how game events are chained together will have an easier time creating things,” said Kaplan.
Even so, the developers did make sure that it will be easy to check if the Workshop works the way players want it to, thanks to a built-in debugging tool called Inspector. Kaplan says it will let players know “why certain things are happening” or “why aren’t they happening.”
Overwatch’s Workshop update is a welcome surprise for its player base. Letting them tinker with the game and create their own user content will do wonders for the game’s longevity. It’s possible that someone may even create a whole new game, such as when Dota was created from Warcraft III’s mapmaker, and is now currently one of the world’s most popular game and esports title.