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The ability to adapt and be “versatile enough to fill multiple battlefield combat roles,” is reflective of Echo’s character traits and personality. Echo was programmed as a rapidly adapting artificial intelligence because her creator – Mina Liao – wanted Echo to be ultra-intelligent and well equipped to help the world. As such, she imbued Echo with the power to dismantle evildoers and take on the form of enemies in order to use their own abilities against them.
Echo’s creator, Dr. Mina Liao, was a firm believer and advocate of omnic rights and freedoms. Posing that “artificial life is still fundamentally life,” Liao fought to protect the rights of omnics and continually researched artificial intelligence with the intent to help omics become a socially accepted force for good.
“And so, she created me. Her legacy. Her promise. Her Echo.”
After thousands of hours in Dr. Liao’s presence, Echo began to adopt the characteristics and behaviors of Mina Liao. Dr. Liao later tragically died during an attack on her Overwatch lab, leaving Echo to continue her legacy in working to make the world a better place. In current day, Echo is free from the confines of the lab and now takes Mina Liao’s place in Overwatch, where she continues to grow alongside her team.
Echo is a midrange damage hero with emphasis on mobility. Her primary fire – Tri-shot – and secondary fire – Sticky Bombs – are both projectiles intended to be used from a safe distance. Her primary and secondary fire especially shine when used in conjunction with her Flight ability, which allows her to freely move both horizontally and vertically for three seconds. Similar to Pharah flying upward and raining rockets down onto enemies, Echo can use her Flight in order to gain better line of sight over her enemies while also making herself a difficult target.
Perhaps Echo’s most potent cooldown is her Focusing Beam – which lasts for 2.5 seconds, on an 8 second cooldown, and has a range of 20 meters. It’s important to reserve Focusing Beam primarily for targets that are already at 50% or lower health, as it deals 50 DPS to high HP targets and 200 DPS to low HP targets. For comparison, Zarya’s Particle Cannon deals 170 DPS at full charge and Symmetra’s Photon Projector deals 180 DPS at full charge. The half health rule also applies to the HP of barriers and turrets – if Reinhardt’s shield is at half health or lower, focus it down in mere seconds with Focusing Beam! This is Echo’s main ability for securing kills and generating a burst of ultimate meter, so make sure to use it wisely.
When Echo casts her ultimate – she targets an enemy player, transforms into a duplicate copy of that hero and gains full use of their abilities. The three most important things to know about this ability are how the interaction works, its duration, and the ultimate charge rate while using Duplicate.
Activating Duplicate – As soon as you hit Q, you’ll be prompted to confirm your target selection by pressing your primary fire button. Once you select the enemy hero, you will take on an exact duplicate form and base health of the target with completely fresh ability cooldowns. This means that valuable abilities with long cooldowns like Baptiste’s Immortality Field will reap massive value during this 15 second ultimate duration.
It’s also important to keep in mind that if you “die” as a duplicated hero, then Echo will return to her normal form at full HP; Echo’s ultimate effectively functions like a second life. For this reason, it will often be advantageous to duplicate a tank hero, because this puts another big body into the team fight that can absorb damage and create space, rather than wasting your extra life as a fragile 200 HP target.
Duplicate Duration – Another note to consider is the duration of the ultimate, where you’ll have to decide which hero you’ll be able to get the most value from within a 15 second timeframe. Sometimes, 15 seconds of having massive healing from a second Ana for your team could be exactly what your team needs in order to sustain and enable your front line to shine. At other times, you may want to try to quickly build up as many bursty, damaging ultimates as you can within 15 seconds. Each game and each team fight will have varying circumstances to consider and evaluate which of the enemy team’s heroes will be able to best accomplish your needs.
Charging Ultimate During Duplicate – One of the most exciting aspects of Echo’s kit is that during Duplicate, the charge rate of the duplicated hero’s ultimate is a whopping 650% of the normal charge rate. Not only are you almost guaranteed to get at least one ultimate use each time you duplicate a target – but there’s also the utterly explosive potential to generate multiple ultimates within the 15 second Duplicate duration. Duplicating Tracer, for example, can produce an astonishing number of Pulse Bombs. Some of the most impressive value uses, however, involve multiple uses of impactful area ultimates like Earthshatter or Death Blossom.
With a huge range of possibilities for this ultimate, it’s quickly apparent that the correct Duplicate play will always be contextual, and you’ll need to get creative with it to see the best results. Generally, players who have a profound understanding of every hero’s kit will be able to flourish with Duplicate. The possibilities for playmaking and team combos are vast and exciting – so let’s get started with an overview of Duplicating each role.
It was even admitted by the developers themselves – duplicating an enemy tank is kind of bonkers. The many reasons for this should be quite apparent from the start – tanks have insane point presence and can often sustain on their own against two or three enemies in the mid-fight. They create space for their team with massive front-line damage, barriers, damage absorption, and crowd control abilities like Chain Hook and Accretion. Perhaps most importantly, they have some of the strongest ultimates in the game – from Graviton Surge, to Whole Hog, to Earthshatter – they’re filled with playmaking potential, especially when you consider the 650% ultimate generation rate Echo receives.
“I’m going Whole Hog!!”
-Echo in every game that she faces a Roadhog, probably
Our top picks for duplicating in the tank category include Roadhog, Reinhardt, Sigma, and Wrecking Ball, but we are sure to see tons of creative uses for all of the tanks as we continue to experiment with Echo.
Most damage players are probably going to look at the enemy team and think to themselves,
“How can I do something really cool… Oh, let’s duplicate Genji, that looks fun.”
2 seconds later: Dashes into enemy. “I need healing.” Dies.
We don’t usually recommend taking this line of play though – let’s be honest with ourselves, the main reason to play Genji is to control high ground and get big value out of Dragonblade. Genji is an in-and-out assassin hero, and if you don’t build up your Dragonblade within the first few seconds of Duplicate, you won’t have enough time to get full value out of his ultimate.
Instead of choosing a hero like Symmetra, Tracer, or Genji, that relies on risking going deep into the enemy team to farm their ultimate, look to options like Pharah, Reaper, Ashe, or Junkrat. These heroes can all get huge value out of their cooldowns and primary fire in order to quickly farm ultimate charge. Pharah and Junkrat can easily throw their damage into crowds of enemies from relative safety, while heroes like Reaper and Ashe are durable and versatile enough to put on consistent damage without being easily caught out by enemies. All of these heroes have fairly robust ultimates, and if it means securing a kill or two, you won’t mind dying in the process. Picking one of these heroes means you think your team lacks enough front-line damage and you just want to hit the enemy hard and fast in order to guarantee some value.
Finally, we come to the support roster – of which there are currently 7 in the game. This means that people who adopt Echo as their main damage hero pick can quickly learn how to effectively Duplicate all of the support heroes.
Supports are also known for having particularly versatile, tide-turning ultimates which Echo can take advantage of mid-fight if she plans and executes the play properly. Think of Lucio and Zenyatta – not only do they bring great utility with their Speed Boost and Discord Orb abilities, but their ultimate abilities can also outright counter multiple enemy ultimates.
Alternatively, you may just want some extra streams of healing or firepower. Ana has several high impact cooldowns, high healing output, and Nano Boost. Baptiste has his Immortality Field, both healing and damage output, and Amplification Matrix. Every support hero is a worthy Duplication consideration – the main challenge will be determining which one is going to create the most value in every team fight.
As we continue to play Echo and enjoy the wonders of Overwatch, flexible players everywhere rejoice as they expand their knowledge and ability to make plays with Echo.
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