Overwatch 2 arrives this August 10 with a great update called ‘Invasion’, a new season with new game modes, the long-awaited PvE missions and a new character for the already extensive list. On this occasion, Blizzard Entertainment he looked again at South America and Peru was the country chosen to be the land of origin of his heroine illariQuechua name for ‘Sunrise’.
The support will use the powers of the Sun to shine in this landing on Steam, a strategic move by the company to be able to conquer a new audience. How did the team behind it bring it to life and what part of our history were they inspired to create it from? RPP News He had access to a world press conference, and another focused on Latin America, in which we were able to learn more about it.
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When asked what was the first approach that developers had to our culture and what was the process of creating illariThis is what they responded.
“This character is really important to me because I’m half Peruvian, half Brazilian,” says Piero Herrera, Senior Game Designer at Blizzard Entertainment. “Having the first Peruvian character, the second South American, is great. Early in development we really asked ourselves ‘who are we doing this for?’ ‘what kind of gameplay do we want?’ and we really wanted a second South American character, so everything pushed to cast her. The concept of him really was very popular from very early: a support hero with solar powers and of Peruvian origin. We decided to go deeper into it and collaborate with the different departments. We started the concept, the narrative and the design. The key moment was thinking about representing different people with this character.”
Clearly, from the start the team envisioned illari under the Sun, a symbol that they investigated precisely to find out how it had an impact on the Inca culture.
“We talked a lot about what is truly important to people and how the Sun was important to the Inca civilization,” continues Joshi Zhang, the game’s Narrative Designer. “We think a lot about how we talk about this country (Peru) and we put it in the optimistic future of this beautiful world (Overwatch). We decided to take the best parts of this culture and really give it its true importance. We talk and consult with many Peruvian women about what is very important to them in representation. We also talk a lot with cultural researchers about how people live in the mountains, how they live off the land, and how they return gratitude to nature.”
“We worked a lot to design the concept of illari”, adds Rakan Khamash, Senior Character Artist of the company. “For example, in the first concept, she had just one braid, but we consulted with our researchers to really capture what family culture is like with parents and grandparents and so we went to two.” Herrera even remembers asking her father for photos to meeting her grandmother when she was young: she was very happy to know that she had the same hairstyle as this heroine.
The Sun is a constant element even in customization, being key not only in each of the character’s details, ranging from his weapon or to his earring, but also even in how lighting visually affects his face, cape, or hair. . Such is the dedication to this feature that there is even a shadow editor for each character position in play under the star.
our way of speaking
But the most outstanding thing, say the developers, is to represent not only Spanish, but also the Peruvian accent and, of course, the ancestral Quechua.
“I am excited about all the vocal lines that we have prepared for illari”Zhang gets emotional. “We have been able to represent not only the Spanish and the Peruvian accent because we have a Peruvian voice actress, but she also speaks Quechua, one of the indigenous languages in Peru. She made me very excited ”.
Precisely, the voice in Latin Spanish, but also in American English, will put it André Cisneros, a national actress. “We were very lucky to find her because I insisted a lot that she should speak Quechua. I can’t wait for everyone to see her origin cinematic and hear her voice lines, ”says the person in charge of the narrative.
For the game, Cisneros slanged some phrases, with illari noting that “it will roast (to bother)” or even to “shake (shame)”. But one of the most important inclusions was in Quechua: sapinchakuy hamusqaykimanta (Remember your roots.) “It’s one of my favorite lines. I learned it because I think he’s so cool and powerful especially because you know where he comes from. It is also somewhat symbolic because many people never thought that the language they speak at home will make it to the big screens,” says Zhang, who hails from a small village in China.
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In some menus, we can see language words like ‘Anqas (Blue)’ or ‘qumir (green)’, plus a pet llama nicknamed ‘Chuno‘.
“It was very important that we seize the opportunity to elevate that culture on the world stage so that the whole world can see what a beautiful culture it is,” Zhang says.
Perfect for new players
illari He belongs to the new faction called “Inti Warriors”, which are very connected to his past. As for its connection to the current lore of Overwatch 2it is known that she was responsible “for protecting her hometown in Peru during the Omnic Crisis.”
The experienced developer points out that one of the challenges when designing the narrative of illari was to create his personality. In the process, he declares that he pitted the Sun that “gives us life” with the one that “has a high potential for destruction.” “In her backstory of her, she has been through a lot in the past and her community lived through a great tragedy. We think that this type of destructive nature is a consequence of it. She is actually our youngest hero and she carries with her a lot of guilt that she hasn’t quite healed,” she adds.
“I think many young people will identify with the things they struggle with, because they are trying to find meaning in their lives, their past, their environment and their circumstances. And I think that’s something new in Overwatch. We haven’t seen any heroes still actively working on it. And especially not to the degree that illari he is doing it”, he adds.
According to the developers, the research group suggested a series of names for the character ranging from Solar, the code title at the beginning of its creation, to others such as Marisol, Estrella or Eclipse. Two other Quechua names were even thought of: chori (gold) and pacari (of pacarinathe place of mythical origin of the Andean peoples). illariwhich also means ‘new beginning’, finally had a better concept close to its history, it was an unusual name beyond its language of origin and it was attractive because of the double L it carries and whose pronunciation does not exist in other languages.
As to gameplay as such, Herrera refers that illari it was intended as a “wacky mount” that shooters might love. From placing his healing pillar, an ability “that we must hide from enemies”, to his ultimate power, which can be used to initiate or prevent an enemy attack, they consider their way of playing “unique” so far Overwatch 2. Also, he pointed out that tests were really done to make sure that “it will be able to shine” in high-level competitive play.
As he adds, during the development stage of illari Up to 40 skills were kept in mind that were discarded until the final selection, “a kit that feels unique and that flows very well.”
“The best of illari it’s that you don’t have to be very good with aiming. If you want to go easy, stay back, focus on healing, “narrates Khamash. “But if someone comes to kill you, you definitely have the tools to get out of that awkward position and do a lot of damage. I would say that everyone will have fun playing with it. She’ll get great shots and you’ll feel great.” For Herrera “illari She’s a good hero for new players.”
And the final question is also ripe: Is it possible to see a Peruvian setting like Machu Picchu as part of the video game? “I don’t know what we can and cannot say. I’m just going to say that illari It has a very rich past and everyone comes from somewhere. It’s enough”, says the director of the narrative with a laugh.
To be able to play with illariyou will need to unlock it for free through the battle pass at level 45. Overwatch 2 is available for free for PC on Steam and Battle.net.