[Remastered] Overwatch: Introducing Link (with Ability Demonstrations)

2017, when we from the Overwatch team first introduced Link to the game, we had no idea what we were doing. Now, we pretend that never happened and brand the rework as a new hero. Happy March 32nd! (Subtitles available)

Stats & Abilities


Difficulty3 Stars
LocationFormerly Ordon Village, now Overwatch Headquarters


Primary FireMaster SwordLink uses his Master Sword as his main weapon.
75 damage, 2 swings per second, 4 m range, 90° attack cone
Secondary FireHylian ShieldBlocks all direct damage from the front, not including splash damage or knockback.
0.1 s uptime, 0.9 s cooldown
ShiftRollPerform a steerable roll forward, sideway or diagonally forward.
1 s cooldown, steer during roll by moving the mouse
EJump AttackLink performs a big forward jump with a strong downward slash.
120 damage, 8 s cooldown, fixed direction, stun
Ending BlowWhen used on an enemy lying on the ground, Link performs a downward stab at the end of the jump instead, killing them instantly.
QOcarinaLink takes out his Ocarina, playing Epona’s Song. She appears and Link rides her, swinging his sword.
1.75 s cast time, 15 s duration, 200 % movement speed, Epona has 600 health, enemies touched by Epona running take 50 damage, sword hits and Epona hits knock the enemy forward along with Epona to allow for multiple hits, control Epona with WASD independent of Link’s view direction, Link can only use primary and secondary fire on her back, press Q again to jump off and leave Epona standing where she is or to get up again, Epona or Link getting stunned or slept makes him fall off
PassiveFi / Sword BeamThe spirit resting inside the Master Sword, Fi, will aid Link on low health by firing an additional projectile with each sword strike.
Only active at 50 hp or lower, 50 damage, 50 m/s projectile speed, no headshots
Quick MeleeA quick hit with the sword’s hilt.

Hidden Skills (Special Combo Abilities)

Spin AttackHold crouch + M1Link gathers his strength and spins around, dealing devastating damage to enemies all around him.
0.5 to 2 seconds charge time, 80 to 135 damage depending on charge time, 7 s cooldown, 4 to 7 m radius
Helm SplitterJump forward on enemy + M1Link jumps over the enemy, striking them in the air with a flip and landing behind them.
75 damage, 225 critical damage if the target has at least 1 armour remaining and is a tank, 4 s cooldown
Back SliceRoll sideways around enemy + M1Link rolls around an enemy and performs a minimum charge Spin Attack
80 damage, 4 m radius, 6 s cooldown, only usable after rolling sideways around an enemy and staying within 3 m of them during the entire roll
Roll StabRoll forward + M1Link performs a forward stab while getting up from his roll.
75 damage, 5 s cooldown, 2 m range, 30° attack cone

⏱ Tɪᴍᴇsᴛᴀᴍᴘs
00:09 Backstory
03:43 Abilities & Gameplay
07:57 Other

📒 Mʏ Tʜᴏᴜɢʜᴛs

When I made Introducing Ganondorf, I decided that I wanted to do Link again. It was my first fideo and the general idea is great, but the fideo itself is horrible in every aspect. Even the sound is horrible, but that’s a problem of the editing programme I used back then. It would be a waste if I wouldn’t add all the new things from the later updates like better abilities, story, maps and more gameplay in Overwatch itself rather than from the original game, especially since Link perfectly fits into the current story events I made up. For the first version, I didn’t even write a script or plan it in any way and just made Jeff say stuff as I went along. The upside of that method is time over quality of course. But despite the quality, it was my first attempt at fideos and as such, it holds a special place in my heart. And that also means that this remake had to be worthy of being the remake of my first fideo and of a great idea.

Using DaVinci Resolve instead of Magix Video deluxe as for the previous two Developer Updates was a dream. It did crash once when I was rendering SFM animations at the same time, but otherwise it was running pretty smoothly for a complicated project like this, it just took a couple of seconds to zoom on the timeline which is of course annoying. That’s all nothing compared to the up to multiple crashes per hour of Video deluxe, though. But they taught me to press ctrl-S after every or at least every couple of actions in every programme which has since prevented many potential progress losses. SFM crashed a couple of times, though. And the Windows Explorer, with everything tied to it.

I’ve made Developer Updates in three different video editing programmes now. Shotcut, Magix Video deluxe and DaVinci Resolve. That also means that I have less possibilities to re-use words from older fideos, I had to build the word Zelda three times for example. But this also forces to possibly make a better version. In Resolve, switching and copying between projects is fortunately easy, but it takes a while to switch between giant projects like Last Update and Introducing Link Remastered. I’m not sure if it’s worth the time, unless of course it’s for words like Ganondorf or kORISmASS. It’s also interesting how words that have to be cut together out of multiple parts sometimes sound perfect and sometimes horrible, even when I expect the opposite result after hearing both parts on their own. Sometimes it sounds perfect with the first parts I use, many times it still sounds horrible after a couple of tries and I just leave it that way.

There are three phases of Jeff voice creation. On the first two days its different, new and exciting and im working efficiently. Then it becomes a tedious nightmare and I try to change words Jeff has never said or words I haven’t already used as much as possible. My thoughts drift off and I have to force myself not to check Twitter or YouTube as an excuse to stop Jeffing for a bit. After more than a week though, I lose all my physical and mental desires and become an efficient organic Instagram filter that apparently can do things like this live on any regular phone. But by then, half of the words have been used before and I get much faster and it’s less frustrating. I think I made the last 5 minutes in 2 days, getting 3 to 4 times the amount of words done compared to the first days when I have to find and cut every single word. Having the Grand Jeff Voice Pack that I’ve been wanting to make for years with every single word from every single Developer Update ready in a separate file tagged with not only the word, but also things like how he stresses the word, would make my own Developer Updates so much less (Do you say that in English? I think you do in German but both sound and look ridiculous to me right now) frustrating, boring and time-consuming and I could focus on the fun parts.

I wrote the script in HTML and CSS because I really want to start working on my website and learn more web development. This way, I could use some of my recently gained knowledge in practice, have more fun and have the ingame scene script readily presentable for the unimportant unpaid unskilled extras. But things went differently and if I hadn’t done that, I wouldn’t have had to stay up for 2 days and maybe again 2 nights today, on March 32nd. It’s interesting how my three big annual fideos always get done just barely in time and with lots of stress and little sleep, even if I start as late as this time. Except I guess for Game of Sales, it was once one week to late and 2019’s episode wasn’t even started because I helped my mum move. I surely have said this multiple times before but I hope this is the last time that I have to get a fideo done under these conditions.

Replays and especially the Workshop are a dream for fideos like this. I can actually create the hero, within the limitations of the Workshop of course, but that’s still incredible and makes so many new things possible and easier. The ingame Workshop editor is very inconvenient and annoying, though. I took a look at the Visual Studio Code extensions and there actually is one for the OW Workshop language. When I inserted my code, it highlighted the first two letters of my Orisa bot as or, though and when I tried to write something, there were no suggestions that it supposedly had. I need suggestions as I of course don’t most of the stuff yet, so I went back to the ingame editor. Now I tried typing in my Link code file again and it did give me suggestions, so apparently it does work after all which is great. Making Link and stuff required for the fideo with the Workshop was fun and I might as well make him, Zelda and Ganondorf actually playable heroes now, that will surely be fun. With the current code, Link is not really playable in practice yet, only M1, M2, Shift and E are mostly functional but of course still require a lot of refinements for proper usage. But when I’ve continued working on it, I’ll make it publicly available. Then there will be no more comments that Link is fake news.

The best thing the Workshop made possible is hiding viewmodels. That has always been the most annoying thing for these fideos. I had to record all first person footage as a spectator with, for example, someone behind me shooting through me to get viewmodel free shooting. The Workshop allows to remove a player’s camera from the first person view and move it anywhere. This can also be used to attach it to the player’s hero’s continuously updating position to make a third person camera, but I had the idea to lock it to the eye position instead. That removes the viewmodels as the camera is not in the usual first person view anymore, but you can still view and control everything like in a first person view. Then, I made the player model invisible and it was exactly like first person with deactivated viewmodels. The only problem was that the continuously to the player’s coordinates updating camera is bound to the tick rate of the Workshop which seems to be quite low, so the view looked horrible, similar to 24 fps. I solved this problem by setting the camera smoothing value to 100. 0 is no smoothing and apparently, otherwise lower values mean more smoothing. I’m assuming 100 is the lowest smoothing. I’m not sure, but I think I felt it a tiny bit. But the smoothing smoothes the camera position updates to perfectly normal looking and feeling motions. Depending on what a value of 100 actually does, this idea could be used as a no viewmodel mod and I quite like not having viewmodels obstructing my aim.

So, with this idea I could actually play the game and edit in my own viewmodel animations afterwards. But I encountered other problems. I made Link’s M1, but damage caused through scripts don’t make the victim flinch, bleed or anything. That nullified the gained believability gained by no viewmodels. So, for everything except for Q, I had to use someone else shooting, just like before. However, when I switched to Bastion to see how visible his shot tracers are, my player model was still invisible because I had just set up a way for me to become Link with no view models, but no way to go back to normal. When I fired, I made an incredible discovery: Hitscan tracers are invisible, when the shooter is. This only applies to hitscan tracers, not projectiles or anything else to my knowledge. But that meant that I could have someone shoot invisibly with no tracer and it could look like Link did the damage. Previously, for Ganondorf’s M1 for example, I cut out the tracer as best as I could.

Then I discovered perfectly programmable bots. They could do exactly what I needed them to do and even exactly at the right time or at my button press. This eliminated all useless, hideous human error from ingame scene recording with unimportant secondary characters. Though, I wonder if the time spent to program and test the bots until they did what I wanted them to do is less than the time it would have taken to ask someone to help. But for perfect timing things they definitely are superior.

Happily I started recording the first ingame scenes. Or at least I wanted to. Then I realised, that there is still the problem of the HUD and other’s health bars. There is no way to disable the hud or at least the hero specific parts at the bottom other than switching it off, which also makes enemy health bars disappear. But they are important, for one to make the scene more believable and also to show how much damage is done. After a bit I came up with a solution. I will record everything twice in the replay. Once with the HUD enabled and once disabled. The replay allows to record the exact same scene multiple times and when I have the scene with and without the HUD, I can cut both parts together in a way that the enemy’s health bar from one recording is always visible, as long as it doesn’t touch the other parts of the HUD. That worked perfectly, disregarding the fact that the recordings are not 100 % the same, there are small differences, probably because the replay is not locked in frames, so when I watch the same scene again, my 144 frames per second or the recording’s 60 don’t get the exact same position, but it’s close enough. Only some times health bars touched HUD elements and I didn’t notice when I "acted", but they all only touched the top part with the objective which doesn’t reveal the teams like the upper corners or the ability and health stuff of the actual played hero. That’s why, in some scenes, there is a different objective listed on top. If you look closely, you may be able to spot the lines where the two recordings with and without HUD are separated. Orisa’s health bar is one pixel below the top right HUD element and when she gets damaged, you can very briefly see the white removed health things being cut off at the top.

I made you "become" Link when picking Genji. First, I thought the double jump could be useful for the Helm Splitter, but then I found out how to do that better by myself. However, I nearly forgot that Genji has a higher movement speed but fortunately I remembered and changed his speed to normal. Another interesting thing I discovered is that regular non-Workshop Ana bots that have been oneshot keep spamming E to heal themselves when they are dead. I bound teleports to the respective team’s spawn and the place of action on E and Q. In my first attempt to create Link’s M1, I made it deal a very high amount of damage. When I killed the enemy Ana bot with it, her corpse disappeared and appeared flickering in one specific spot in her spawn. Then I realised that that is the teleport location I set up for pressing E and the bot must be spamming E to heal herself after having been damaged and killed by me. Very interesting.

The roll I made also created some interesting unintended side effects, like rolling off a ledge and immediately turning around to gain a lot of height, in addition to usual jump cancelling at the end and using slanted or small objects to gain height, as with other movement abilities like Rocket Punch. The ledge jumping mechanic actually fits Link quite well, it can be interpreted as his old auto jump when walking off a ledge. That also gave me the idea to implement the ledge jump as seen in the games when rolling off, but I’m not sure if I should do that.

By the way, calling the role "damage" is stupid and leads to funny sentences like "triple damage" or "he is a damage". You wouldn’t call healers heal or healing either but I guess it’s better than calling them damage per second.

In SFM, I wanted to use the high resolution TP Link model that is from Hyrule Warriors I think, but after a while of posing and having trouble with the shield’s leather holding thing, I realised that that model’s fingers don’t have any bones. Just the static hand as a whole can be moved. I wonder why that is. Unfortunately, that meant that I had to use the main model from Hyrule Warriors again. It’s not bad and has more polygons and pixels, but I prefer TP Link over any other. I have no idea how to 3D animate and I hate it, but surprisingly the Jump Attack an Ending Blow animations turned out quite good. The other first person animations were acceptable as well. However, animating an entire person is a different matter and I still don’t know how to animate someone without their feet moving when they should be still on the ground. Apparently that’s possible with rigs, but when I try to add a rig to a model, nothing happens. I could probably find out what I’m doing wrong and improve, but I don’t really care about 3D animating. I just need them for this fideo. Maybe I would like it though if I actually knew how to to it. But since I don’t, I usually use DAG tools, whatever that means, to use existing animations in SFM from Valve games or occasionally ones that come with models ripped from other games on other models and change them to fit my purposes. This time however, I made the first person animations completely by myself. The success of the aforementioned two animations made me try to animate the third person animation by myself after all. I spent like 6 hours starting from 13:00 on March 32nd when I was done with the fideo and could have rendered and uploaded it. I didn’t like how the DAG constrained animation turned out, so that was one more reason to try it by myself. But the result was horrible, and after 6 hours, I gave up. But at least now I know that I suck, had I not tried and uploaded it then, I would have always thought to myself that I could have made all animations completely by myself and the third person animation could have turned out acceptable as well and I prefer doing everything by myself. Using DAG tools feels like cheating to me. But now I have tried it and know that it couldn’t have turned out acceptable.

There was also no perfect chroma key colour for many of the animations. Link is too colourful. For the third person animations, I once again used the same footage twice stacked on top of each other. One cut out red things, including the Loftwing on the Hyliand Shield and the other cut out everything but the Shield, and together they make a completely chroma keyed Link. It’s also annoying that the function of ctrl + mwheel and shift + mwheel are swapped in the motion editor and graph editor. It’s already annoying that shortcuts and controls are different in every programme and that the majority doesn’t allow to customise them, but within the same programme its even worse.

Last year, I figured out how I could record places in Zelda TP in Dolphin to make it look like it was recorded from a high up camera. I use cheats to climb on climbable surfaces of any height and to create an invisible floor below me. That way, I can walk in the air from high places and film in the first person camera mode. Unfortunately, the game or Dolphin doesn’t seem to like Link standing in the air. The programme crashes after a bit of standing in the air, sometimes after seconds, sometimes I can be in the air longer than I need to. But the crashes were very annoying. Every time I had to pray it would give me enough time to record what I needed before it crashed. And in some locations, like the courtyard or I think the graveyard last year, I had to kill a whole bunch of flying enemies every single time. But this time, after a couple of crashes, I thought to myself that it would be great if I had some kind of save states. Then I realised that I’m using an emulator and I could have used save states the entire time. I don’t think I’ve ever used save states before but I also haven’t played that much on emulators yet. I want to change that though. But they saved me a lot of time.

Until last friday, I didn’t think it would be possible to get the fideo done in time. But I underestimated how much faster Jeffing continuously gets with more words repeating. Resolve instead of Video deluxe also saved a lot of time. Then I had some things already ready from the last years, like the main parts of the HUD and the intro and thumbnail background images. This year’s Jeff text is the longest so far. Before, Zelda was the longest, and that text had a lot of boring unnecessary things to make it more like a real developer update. This time, I only used necessary and (hopefully) entertaining things and it still surpassed all older fideos in length. And was done faster. I also am somehow disappointed with my view of the finished product. During the creation, I thought it will be amazing and I can’t wait to have the finished fideo in front of me and have made something great. The ingame scenes turned out nicely, but I don’t really feel like I would expect me to feel after two weeks of non-stop work and very little sleep on something that could be a masterpiece. I kind of lost interest now and want to get to the next fideo as quickly as possible. But what’s the point in making fideos where the creation process is horrible and I only keep going for the finished product, but when I have it in front of me I immediately want to go to the next project?

There are some more things I would like to talk about, like that I planned to release an 8-bit cover in addition to the Developer update today, but there was no time. I will most likely make that cover for the next regular friday, though. But now the fideo is uploaded and processed and I still have to make sucktitles for people like Amarizo who lost their hearing aid. And then, get some sleep, finally after 2 days and 1.5 nights. Only some, though, because I would mess up my messed up sleep schedule if I sleep much longer than until 7:00. I also wanted to upload multiple 2fideos today, but I guess that’ll have to wait until tomorrow. I’m surprised that I was able to write this much. When I started writing, I could barely keep my eyes open but now, I just keep on typing. I love typing and writing, I’d love to write stories or something. I’ll definitely make space for that on my website. Have a wonderful March 32nd, I hope you enjoyed this year’s Developer Update despite it being Link again and I hope you don’t sacrifice your physical and mental health as much as I currently do. I have to change that.

👆 Lɪɴᴋs
Website: http://phal.io
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/linkriolu
Ko-fi: https://ko-fi.com/link_riolu
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LinkRiolu
Discord server: http://discord.phal.io
Secondary YouTube channel with random videos, work in progresses, behind the scenes etc.: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6OogQGNdNLLRix0TR0Ke_A
SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-725569481
Tumblr: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/link-riolu
Twitch (German): https://www.twitch.tv/link_riolu
I’m on almost every site because I don’t want to exclude anyone, find out if I’m using the site you’re using here: http://phal.io/links

🕒 Exᴘᴇɴᴅɪᴛᴜʀᴇ ᴏꜰ ᴛɪᴍᴇ
180.25 hours total
Script: 29 h
Jeff’s voice: 75.48 h
Ingame scenes: 20.68 h
Map: 2.46 h
SFM: 17.32 h
Image editing: 13.14
Video editing not including Jeff’s voice: 21.81 h
Subtitles: 0.36 h

💾 Pʀᴏɢʀᴀᴍᴍᴇs ᴜsᴇᴅ
Video editing: DaVinvi Resolve https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve/
3D animating: Source Filmmaker https://store.steampowered.com/app/1840/Source_Filmmaker/
Image editing: Affinity Photo https://affinity.serif.com/en-us/photo/
Image editing: Paint.NET https://www.getpaint.net/
Finding Jeff’s words: Notepad++ https://notepad-plus-plus.org/downloads/
Screen recording: Shadowplay https://www.nvidia.com/en-us/geforce/geforce-experience/shadowplay/

🎵 Mᴜsɪᴄ ᴜsᴇᴅ
[8-Bit] The Legend of Zelda – Overworld Theme https://youtu.be/qc1RTNB6Rwc
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess – Hidden Skill Training
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess – Hyrule Castle
[8-Bit] The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess – Ilia’s Theme https://youtu.be/IWw9-V1yJtk