So if you have been watching the Overwatch teasers for Hero 28, you know about the rolling ball of death known as Wrecking Ball. Leading up his reveal, everyone deciphered the clues rather fast and were able to guess that the next character would be Hammond. The thing that threw people off, was the Wrecking Ball itself and if a monkey or chimpanzee could fit in that steel ball. It was possible, but it caused many in the community to question if we still dealt with a monkey. Whether you want to say Blizzard tricked us once again, or if we didn’t put the clues together correctly, the champion has revealed himself! And our mystery hero is… a hamster.
Well… It isn’t every day you can leave people in a state of confusion and hilarity, but leave it to Blizzard on pulling that off. The funny thing about all of this was how we thought Hammond would be a monkey smaller than Torbjorn running around. But a hamster? With Hammond’s reveal as the upcoming Wrecking Ball, this changes more than we thought in terms of how he would fit into the story of Overwatch. With this brand new perspective of his character, it leaves us scratching our heads. Is this hamster really is an evil mastermind? Or is he really is a bundle of joy that enjoys destruction? Either way, let’s take a stab at figuring out Hammond the Hamster’s story and where things will go from here.
Story Time With Jeff From The Overwatch Team
So for those of you who saw the developer update or the origin story for Wrecking Ball, here is the abridged version. While the Horizon Lunar Colony was the home genetically modified gorillas like Winston, the Lunar Colony also experimented on a variety of other animals. It’s hard to say what other animals there were, but one of them was a hamster known as Experiment 8. The scientists called him Hammond and like the gorillas, he became intelligent and rather big for a hamster. He also was quite the escape artist as he would frequently escape his cage into different parts of the Moon Colony. While they never knew what he was doing, it turns out he was teaching himself how to be a mechanic while becoming good friends with Experiment 28, Winston.
When the gorillas in the colony went on their uprising murder spree, Wiston took it upon himself to escape the colony and flee to Earth. Little did he know, Hammond knew what Winston was up to and made his own escape pod, tethering it to Winston’s. The plan worked and Winston didn’t know Hammond tagged along. As they approached Earth however, the tether snapped and caused Hammond to plummet straight towards Junkertown while Winston arrived to Watchpoint: Gibraltar. Stuck in the Australian Wasteland, Hammond constructed his escape pod into a battle mech and, under the alias of Wrecking Ball, dominated the Scrapyard. Now Hammond travels the world in Wrecking Ball seeking new adventures.
I am Hammond, and I’m here to overthrow you!
So perhaps a hamster in a killer mech might not be the picture of a good guy. If we consider the buildup to Hammond though, many thought he was the creature that led to the downfall of the Lunar Colony. If Hammond was a chimp, it would be understandable how he could convince the other apes to go on a rampage to kill the scientists. As a hamster though, one can’t help but question if he could go up to some gorillas and be like, “Overthrow your human masters!” if he can’t talk. Mind you, Wrecking Ball will interact with characters through the on-board AI that will allow Hammond to interact with other characters.
If we were to look at the origin story of Hammond, you can say the tone is very conflicting. You have Doctor Hammond (the human, not the gorilla) as our narrator while he talks about Hammond as this cute and smart hamster. The irony here is that if you were to listen to the trailer with no visuals and once more with no narration, it feels like Hammond isn’t the character we may think he is. Unless you think he is evil, to which keep that thought stowed away for now. The other issue is that Blizzard hasn’t said if Hammond had any involvement with the Lunar Colony Uprising. For all we know, the gorillas could have gone insane with or without the hamster’s influence.
You can be chaotic while not being evil, right Junkrat?
So for the sake of an argument, let’s say Hammond isn’t evil. Hooray! That means he’s good then, right? Well… No. When we look at the characters on the roster, you could compare him to Junkrat. Hammond might not be evil, but he can be mischievous. The notes in the Lunar Colony never made Hammond off to hint him being a bad character, but a troublemaker at worst. Perhaps during his stay in Junkertown, he discovered newfound enjoyment in destroying the other mechs in The Scrapyard—although Hammond didn’t join the Junkers. So Hammond could be chaotic neutral like Junkrat; not fighting for any side per se, but not going with groups like Talon.
So while Hammond may not have led the uprising that’s not to say he is in the clear. For all we know, he might have been an accidental trigger point behind it all. What if, during one of his troublemaking sessions he may have accidentally caused the gorillas to go on a rampage? Even the gorillas conspired to overthrow the colony and Hammond had nothing to do with it, it’s possible he could have played a role in the downfall without realizing it. If this were the case, there might be an interesting interaction between Hammond and Winston should Winston call him out on it and Hammond doesn’t have a good response. Or maybe Hammond enjoys this lifestyle, and even if he were to bump into Winston, he might not see a need to join Overwatch (or at least not right away).
Conclusion: What kind of character will Wrecking Ball be?
With Wrecking Ball in the Public Test Servers, fans are already falling in love with this character. Not only can you go crashing into enemies, but some players have been able to use his tether to do rather amazing flanking abilities. He may not be the tank we wanted, but his play set will bring something special. Still, one of the big things people will pay close attention to will be Hammond’s interactions. He will have interactions with Winston while also having a few with Junkrat and Roadhog. We may even see him talk with D.Va and how the two may try to one up each other. If he has no devious interactions though, then it’d be a safe bet that Talon isn’t getting their long-needed tank.
Do we know all what we need to know about Hammond? Or is there still a few minor details that may reveal his true nature? Only time will tell for sure, but for some of us, we want to see his customization options. I can already see him having a legendary skin during Summer Games that will turn him into a Lucioball. But what do you think? Is Hammond evil, or just chaotic? Leave your thoughts down below and be sure to follow us here at culture of gaming for more Overwatch editorials and other things in the world of gaming.