Posted by Ken McDonnell @Ken
Now Loading's sentimental Irishman. I can't stop playing Overwatch, please send help.
Ken McDonnell

One of the promises Blizzard made regarding their addictive multiplayer extravaganza was that they were going to continue to expand upon the game's character base. Overwatch currently features 21 unique heroes and villains and players have been tirelessly searching for content relating to future additions.

While the majority of us are running around the likes of Hanamura and Hollywood desperately trying to get featured in Now Loading's POTG gif roundup, others have been tirelessly searching for Blizzard's hints relating to one character:

Sombra — Overwatch's Secret Support Character

The name "Sombra" has been the driving force behind numerous investigations into what Blizzard has in store. In fact, people were almost convinced that she was going to be unveiled as a nice surprise on Overwatch's release date. Sadly it never came to fruition, but it looks like we're on the cusp of her reveal. Let's take a look at the facts.

Everything We Know

Like a great trash novel, it all started with a little advert in a French cinema...

For our cultured readers, "DÉCOUVERTE DU NOUVEAU HÉROES ET" will make a lot of sense. For those like myself, the translation tells us that the cinematic event for Overwatch was set to reveal a new character. This French cinema chain backtracked on the statement and claimed it was a typo pretty quickly, but it seemed like a peculiar mistake...sadly nothing came of it.

But aside from external teasings, Overwatch itself has given us a great deal of information on characters-to-be in the past, such as this tease for D.Va on Hanamura:

With Sombra, however, the first hint came in the form of this case file on Dorado:

During one of Overwatch's many betas, people came across a series of files on the Mexican map. The files were classified and named three individuals: Soldier 76, Jack Morrison and Sombra. Given Soldier 76 is Jack Morrison, this only left the mysterious Sombra file. Who was it referencing?

More maps were added as betas continued and pictures of a mysterious hooded figure began to crop up in these new locations, sometimes with the name Sombra attached. They gradually gave us an indication of who we were dealing with and she looks pretty damn cool.

The Hooded Sniper

These were found on Route: 66 and are yet again shown in the form of a case file. Additionally, Reaper eventually got a new voice line where he asked, "Where's Sombra when you need her?" This implies that she's affiliated with the villains of the game — of which there are few: Reaper, Widowmaker, Junkrat, Roadhog, and Symmetra — which would be a welcome addition.

Then some astute players noticed an aiming reticle that resembled Sombra's hood in Gamespot's 3-part series on the creation of Overwatch. Here are some screenshots:

If this wasn't enough, she was actually seen in an early version of the character selection screen:


The image isn't the clearest, but she appears to be holding a sniper and is definitely part of the Support section, an area that Overwatch is certainly lacking in.

Players have also speculated about Sombra's relationship with the rest of the cast. It's firmly believed that she's the mother of Pharah, based on their similarities. However, according to the game's lore, Pharah's mother is supposed to have died, but Jack Morrison (Soldier 76) and Gabriel Reyes (Reaper) were also supposed to have died in Overwatch's civil war, so it's entirely plausible she may be still kicking around.

In terms of these these similarities with Pharah, here's an image that's believed to be Sombra in her youth:

See the tattoo on her eye?

It would be pretty cool to have Pharah's mother come into the mix on the opposite side of her daughter. Make for some emotional Play of the Game's, huh?

Blizzard, You Tease

But this here is the latest news on Sombra, published two days ago. The official Overwatch Twitter account uploaded an image of a new weapon type with a conversation between Mercy and Torbjörn pasted over it. The file has been marked as "CONFIDENTIAL," which is a running theme when it comes to referencing Sombra. Here's a closer look at the image:

While Torbjörn has, as ever, put forth a very clever design for his latest weapon, I would like to remind everyone that my intention when agreeing to the development of different biotic delivery mechanisms was to save the lives of Overwatch agents and others in need of medical aid,” Mercy said of the rifle. “With this latest proposal, it is clear to me that we are on the slippery slope to modifications that will inevitably result in a weaponized version of this technology: something that I have been completely opposed to from the beginning.

This is Mercy's reply to Torbjörn's new design of her "biotic delivery" mechanism. So it would appear that Sombra's sniper has roots in support. Now, it has been weaponized so we're unsure of whether it's simply a sniper or whether it will have an alternate fire mode that can heal teammates. It would be a really cool introduction into the game and would certainly beef up Overwatch's Support category.

But why now? Why have Blizzard posted it at this exact time? Is Sombra on the horizon? Could she be arriving sooner than we thought with a new cinematic to accompany her? Time will tell.

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Sources - (NeoGAF)