Overwatch Hero UX: D.VA

This is a UX article: as such, it is not focused on strategy, nor background. It talks about gameplay fun and pain for the character.

My third spotlight is on D.VA, Overwatch mecha-driver.

This review encompasses D.VA Characteristics and Abilities (which both focus on the fun of using the character) and Team Play (which focuses on how is can be fun to play with others).

I used colors to classify fun level:

Blue: awesome
Green: fun
Orange: average
Gray: meh
Red: painful
Purple: frustrating


Characteristics

D.VA’s Characteristics are very nice overall.

Health [400 (Mech) + 150 (Pilot)]

D.VA’s health pool is awesome. She can even survive her Mecha when it is destroyed, to gain 150 extra health.

Armor [200]

On the top of that much health, this feels nice.

Shield [0]

This is normal for a tank.

Mobility [average, flying]

Slow while shooting, normal while walking, awesome while flying with her Boosters. The Ability refreshes quickly, therefore overall mobility is very nice.

Hit-Box [very large / very small]

Hit Box is one of D.VA’s major fallbacks, as she takes heavy damage from shotguns and is also easy to be aimed at when not using her Boosts. It becomes very small when out of her mecha, though, granting some survivability.

Abilities

The last patch adds Micro-Missiles and nerfs the Defense Matrix. I like D.VA this way: it feels more active, and the Micro-Missiles add some reach (even if they’re best used in short-range). Micro-Missiles can be shot while keeping up the Defense Matrix, and this, again, makes D.VA more active. D.VA can now fire when using Boosters, and this is nice too.

Fusion Cannons

I’m not a big fun of the Fusion Cannons. They have a large hit box, which is nice, but short range, which is not nice. It’s nice to have infinite ammo, but the fire feels somewhat passive, damage being usually just tipping. They are nice when used in combination with Boosters and/or Micro-Missiles, though.

Defense Matrix

The Defense Matrix has been nerfed, cutting its duration in half. It is still useful to get out of dangerous situations, in combination with Boosters.

Boosters

D.VA’s best asset. They have quick cooldown and can bring you anywhere. Boosters just make all other D.VA’s ability nice to use. For instance, you can boost and shoot with Fusion Cannons in the face of your opponent. Or you can put up the Defense Matrix and boost away from danger, looking for that sweet 200 Health Medikit. You can use Boosters to jump over barriers, to seek & destroy snipers, to get out of enemy Ultimate’s reach… uses are many.

Micro Missiles

Even if the damage from Micro Missiles is moderate, I find this Ability a nice add. Without the Missiles your only attack option is Fusion Cannons, which I do not like by themselves. The Missiles make your attacks more satisfying. Landing a bunch of missiles together with your Fusion Cannons is, indeed, nice. Firing Missiles when your Defense Matrix is up changes the feeling of being inoffensive while guarding (as for Reinhardt).

The Missiles per se are not that major advantage they could have been, but they do change D.VA’s UX. I always felt too defensive, with Boosters and Ultimate as my only real offensive option. Now things are changed, and I’m glad they are.

Light Gun

When the Mech is destroyed, D.VA comes out of it and is transformed in the smallest hero on the battlefield. 150 Health is poor, but you can still hit from behind corners, or behind other allied Tanks, and this can make the difference. The Light Gun you’re equipped with is, indeed, not useless at all. Damage doesn’t reduce with distance, so you are still getting your 14 damage per hit.

Being a light DPS hero while waiting for another Mech to replace the destroyed one feels fun. Furthermore, if you manage to stay alive, this covers the boring seconds of being eliminated. This mode (and the weapon itself) adds variety to the character and is very much welcome.

Ultimate: Self Destruct / Call Mech

Using your Mech as a giant bomb feels rewarding – when it hits. It is difficult to land a hit with this Ultimate, especially at higher levels. You can still eject and launch your mech in the air, making its traceability more difficult. It is still a fun Ultimate to play, and also comes with a good reward: your full health back! You can use Call Mech just after you used your Self Destruct. Of course it’s better used offensively than defensively, but a new health pool is always welcome.

Team Play

For Tanks team play is key. D.VA is also a Bruiser, so her role is not completely bond to her party.

  • As a very mobile Bruiser, D.VA is effective both when attacking and when defending.
  • As D.VA I usually feel welcome by the team. This is nice.
  • You will need a healer. D.VA large hitbox gets lots of hits and greatly benefits from a healer. Having large Health pool is beneficial to the healer too, who has her Ultimate charged easily.
  • Can increase Mercy’s reach, as she flies with Boosters.

Overall teamwork evaluation: good.

Final Considerations

Boosters actually boost D.VA fun! With the latest patch D.VA now has Micro Missiles, which also contribute to her UX. She’s currently my favourite Tank.

MY FINAL FUN RATING: 8/10


What do you think about this review? Do you have a different experience with Torbjörn? Or do you feel the same? Please, tell us your feelings in playing Torbjörn in the comments!

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