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New Hero Sigma Added to Overwatch PTR — Sigma Abilities, Backstory

Today, Sigma joins the Overwatch roster as the game’s newest tank Hero. This “evil” character’s abilities are loosely based around astrophysics, and is playable now on the Public Test Region (PTR). Looking for information on Sigma abilities, backstory, and development? We’ve got them all right here.

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Overwatch Sigma Abilities


Launch two charges which implode after a short duration, dealing damage in an area.

This attack is a short to mid-range ability that deals 50 damage on each direct impact, and a small amount of explosive damage around it. The charges also bounce off one wall, allowing players to hit enemies around corners over a short range.

Kinetic Grasp

Absorb projectiles in front of you and convert them into shields.

This acts similar to D.Va’s Defense Matrix, but only covers an area about the size of Genji’s Deflect. It will “eat” ultimates like Graviton Surge from Zarya. Any damage that Sigma absorbs is temporarily turned into shields for himself, providing up to 400 health of protection.


Gather a mass of debris and throw it at an enemy to knock them down.

Sigma creates a large rock that he throws at enemies that knocks them back and causes an extremely short stun.

Experimental Barrier

Hold to propel a floating barrier; release to stop. Press again to recall the barrier to you.

This 1500HP barrier is a cross between Reinhardt’s and Orisa’s. Sigma can project a barrier that floats in a straight line until the player releases the shield button. It will float into any direction in the air as well. Unlike Orisa where she creates a new barrier on each use of her ability, the barrier provided by Sigma has one health bar, similar to Reinhardt, and must be put away for it to be recharge.

Gravitic Flux (Ultimate)

Manipulate gravity to lift enemies into the air and slam them back down.

Sigma flies into the air and, for a few seconds, a large target on the ground appears, similar to Doomfist, that only he can see. Once cast, enemies caught in the area are thrown straight into the air for two seconds, and upon landing take 50% of their maximum health as damage. Unlike Doomfist, Sigma may still be fired upon while he sets up his ultimate. Enemies in the air may still use their abilities, but they cannot move themselves.

Overwatch Sigma Hero Development

After a few teasers over the weekend and reveal of his origin story on Monday, Sigma and his gameplay were previewed Tuesday afternoon on stream by former Overwatch League pro Seagull, live from the Blizzard HQ. Game Director Jeff Kaplan joined Seagull for a short time, providing some information on Sigma and his development.

Sigma is Dutch, and Blizzard called on assistance from personnel in both Europe and on campus in Irvine for help with naming Sigma and other characteristics. Development for Sigma started while the team was working on Mauga, a character introduced in a story recently released for Baptiste, and the abilities they had come up with didn’t quite feel right for that character. The two were split, and work continues on Mauga for release some time in the future.

Overwatch Sigma Backstory

Sigma’s full name is Siebren de Kuiper. He was an astrophysicist who worked out of The Hague as he tried to harness the power of black holes. After an experiment gone wrong, Siebren woke up under heavy guard in a government facility where he was called Subject Sigma. There he and the strange gravitational effects were being studied, as well as the psychological trauma he had undergone.

Talon, the evil rival to Overwatch, got wind of his abilities and promptly freed him. To this day, unbeknownst to Sigma, Talon manipulates him for their own gain.

So when will Sigma launch across all of Overwatch? Blizzard is traditionally very careful about setting release dates, and during the stream with Seagull, Kaplan said that the hope is to have Sigma on the live servers by the time Competitive Season 18 begins on September 1, 2019.

About the Author

Sabriel Mastin