One of the 30 million orphaned children in the Omnic Crisis is stepping into Overwatch. On Monday, Blizzard finally announced a new hero, Jean-Baptiste Augustin, who will join the game’s roster as the 30th playable character in the popular multiplayer shooter.
But who is Jean-Baptiste? What is his play style? And when will he be released into the game? And who’s the voice actor behind him? Here’s everything we know about Jean-Baptiste in Overwatch.
Here’s When You Can Play as Jean-Baptiste in Overwatch
Jean-Baptiste’s official release date has not yet been confirmed, but players can expect he can arrive “soon,” based on a meme tweet by Blizzard.
On Tuesday, one day after his announcement, Blizzard officially added Baptiste to the public test realm, or PTR. This is in line with Blizzard’s history of new characters coming to Overwatch. If you’re on the PTR, you can take a crack at Baptiste right now.
For what it’s worth, we are fast approaching a possible Anniversary Event in 2019. However, a third Overwatch anniversary season remains unconfirmed, and characters haven’t historically premiered in anniversary seasons.
We’ll update this post when we know more about Jean-Baptiste’s release date.
Who is Jean-Baptiste Augustin in the Lore of Overwatch?
Jean-Baptiste, or just “Baptiste” as fans have come to know him, is one of the children orphaned during the Omnic Crisis, the global war between humans and robots (Omnics) that set the stage for Overwatch. In his animated Origins Story trailer, released on Monday night, Baptiste reveals a harsh upbringing where he was forced to learn how to survive — “Steal, or starve. Kill, or be killed.”
Growing up in Haiti, Baptiste joined and trained to become a combat medic under Talon, the terrorist organization led by Doomfist, Moira, and Reaper. But like Finn in Star Wars, Baptiste grew a conscience and left Talon, who’ve been struggling to hunt down Baptiste ever since.
How Will Jean-Baptiste Play?
As a combat medic, Baptiste is a new support character in the style of Lúcio, Mercy, Ana, and Moira, with an apparent emphasis on fighting equal to healing. As he says in his origins video, “I am going to fight for a better world. For some, that means a bandage. For others, a bullet. Today, I give you the choice.”
In a gameplay preview tweeted by Blizzard, Baptiste’s abilities are:
- Biotic Launcher (alternative fire), fires like a rocket launcher
- Regenerative Burst (Ability 1), a “flash balloon” that continually heals allies in range
- Immortality Field (Ability 2), a protective shield that guards players standing inside; players take damage but do not die inside the field
- Exo Boots (Passive), rocket-powered boots capable of big jumps
- Amplification Matrix (Ultimate), an ability that reminds me so much of the Auger in Resistance: Fall of Man. Basically, Baptiste generates a “field” where his and other friendly firepower get a massive boost against vulnerable targets standing inside the field.
You can watch Baptiste’s gameplay demo below.
Who is the Voice of Jean-Baptiste?
Users on Twitter have identified New York-based Haitian actor Benz Antoine. While Antoine has not confirmed his role, his Instagram page does contain selfies in voice recording booths and providing facial motion capture for an undisclosed, unidentified project.
In one Instagram post, dated November 18, he added the telling hashtag, “#gaming.”
Overwatch is playable now on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.