Overwatch is full of maps that show regular places decimated by war and the Omnic Crisis, but it’s considerably lacking in representation for the ultra-rich who appear unbothered by plebian problems.
Enter Circuit Royal, the game’s newest Escort map, introduced to the world as a part of Overwatch 2. This immaculate map was known during its development as Monte Carlo, based on the real-life territory of glitz, glamor, and gambling. Within the Overwatch universe, Circuit Royal is an upper-tax-bracket paradise and base of operations for Maximilien, a Talon-affiliated omnic with money to burn.
High-tech cars dot the winding hilly streets and various shops, and alleys offer limitless places for heroes to stage a surprise attack. Competitively, this map will likely be the home of snipers and heroes with mobility as well as the crushing defeat of being “spawn camped.”
The initial defense starts out in an expansive garage that houses speedy, high-tech cars from the Overwatch universe’s Formula One circuit. Brazil’s representative, Turbotron, is the crown jewel of the garage; it also functions as a good nod towards the Rio de Janeiro map that will eventually join Circuit Royal in Overwatch 2.
Next to the garage is the ritzy Hotel Arche, where the attackers will try to bring the payload in for a rest. The hotel in its entirety becomes the final third of the map and includes a fancy lobby, several staircases, and a full pool with bar. Unfortunately, you will not have time to enjoy any of the bars if you’re defending the hotel’s doors.
It wouldn’t be a gambling city without a glitzy casino, and that’s where the attack initially begins in Circuit Royal. The gold-plated casino, which resembles the one shown in the “Masquerade” comic where Maximilien meets with Doomfist, has a grand ceiling and multiple omnic butlers manning the tables.
Your job in Circuit Royal is to escort a race car from the casino to the Hotel Arche through the city’s winding streets and numerous hills. Immediately after leaving the attacker’s spawn, players will be faced with a street full of shops. While this market section looks quaint, the staircases heading to upper levels of the map and the open shop spaces offer dozens of places for snipers to hide out.
After passing an archway, which defenders can easily use to halt attacks, players will round a corner. Don’t get distracted by the statue and amazing view on the right of the curve; to the left is a fashionable shop where enemies can hide out or dart into the backline.
Checkpoint A and its immaculate “green wall” immediately follows. While the actual checkpoint is on the lower level of the map, attackers will have to deal with an upper level assault from defenders on the highest level, on top of an ivy-covered vertical drop. The payload will have to climb up a U-shaped hill where attacks could come from all sides. Snipers can also perch atop the various balconies if they have the movement abilities.
After the hills, the payload moves to Checkpoint B, which is located right outside the initial defender spawn and the entry to the Hotel Arche. The payload will eventually travel through the hotel itself for the final third of the map, passing a neon-lit bar and completely ruining the immaculate, carpeted lobby. The end of the map is a grand ballroom with more gold detailing than any normal person would ever need.
Strategies and hero picks
Defenders will want to rely heavily on snipers or heroes with mobility to take advantage of Circuit Royal’s numerous staircases, ramps, and vertical real estate. Long-range DPS heroes like Hanzo or Ashe can perch behind a shield tank and cause serious damage. If you’re sure a sniper isn’t on the attacking side, Pharah or Echo wouldn’t be amiss either to maintain space.
Snipers aren’t a bad idea for attackers, either, but at least one hero with vertical ability will be vitally important to take the ivy wall on Checkpoint A. Use a Genji, Hanzo, or D.Va to climb up and disturb the defenders’ peace. After that, mobile heroes like Tracer or Soldier: 76 who can unseat defenders perched atop staircases or bridges would be a good shout.
Defenders will have a relatively easy ride as long as attackers aren’t rolling through points with mobile heroes, but attackers face the dreaded spawn camp scenario during the map’s initial stages. Thanks to the staircases and perches around the first corner before Checkpoint A, one good Widowmaker or Sojourn can stop an attacking team from leaving the spawn. Get behind a shield or start aiming better to get out of it.