Let’s face it, Paris is the worst map in Overwatch. There is no other map in this game where the groans are more audible and the quitters are more predictable than with Paris.
Immediately upon hearing French music while the map loads, I prepare myself for the mass exodus of players that is about to happen.
In quickplay, players leave and are replaced throughout the first few minutes of the match, which pretty much ruins the game regardless of which team you are on.
In competitive play, you won’t even have to worry about actually playing the map most of the time. There is an unspoken social convention when Paris comes up that someone in the server should take the hit for everyone and quit, leading to the cancellation of the match. While that person will receive a matchmaking penalty from Blizzard, they are doing the lord’s work, and we all thank them for their service to the Overwatch community.
It’s better to not play Overwatch at all, than to play on Paris, so just take the map out of rotation already!
The flaws in Paris’ design that make people rage
The problems with the Paris’ map design start with the very first choke point. To reach the A point, attacking teams must push through a single, narrow chokepoint, where the defenders can rain damage down on them from a central high ground position that is difficult to access for attackers. This central high ground gives the defenders a dominant position over every possible route the attack team can take to get to the point, which makes attacking this point very frustrating.
Some might argue that you can take flying characters down a left path into the Point A courtyard, and this is true. But whoever goes over that flank route will be sitting duck for whatever toxic bunker composition is waiting on the other side. And there will be a toxic bunker composition most of the time because the A point was basically built for Bastion and Baptiste.
Making matters worse, there is also very little cover for the attackers to utilize on this point, while the defenders have several pieces of significant cover on the high ground. So the defenders not only have the high ground advantage, they also have an upper-hand when it comes to cover.
With the first point being so heavily defense-sided, full-holds on this map are quite common. Even when attackers do get the point, it is usually because they expended all their cooldowns and ultimate resources to do so, making it difficult to actually win the teamfight on the point. This disastrous point isn’t designed with any level of fairness in mind, which makes it demoralizing to play.
Unfortunately, the problems with the map design don’t end with the first point. There are also serious issues with point B’s design.
First of all, when attacking the B point, the offense has a very long walk to get to the point from their spawn. In fact, it is the longest walk back of any assault map in the game.
The B point itself is super open and very large, which makes it frustrating to play for both offense and defense. No matter where you are on the point, you are exposed to damage. There is a statue in the middle that can provide some limited cover or a place for Hammond to swing around wildly, but beyond that everyone who fights on point B is fighting in the open, reliant entirely on their tanks for cover, with no environmental play to speak of.
So in summary, both the points on this map are not fun to play. This map features some of the longest, most demoralizing walk backs in the game, and the first point offers such an incredible advantage to defensive bunker comps that most players would rather just leave than experience what this map has to offer.
Why Blizzard should go ahead and take Paris out
At the point where your community has its own rules and processes for avoiding your map, something has to change. The options, usually, are binary: rework or remove.
Ideally, Blizzard would rework this map completely. After all, the map’s aesthetic is beautiful. It would be a shame to have to see all that hard art design work go to waste. However, Jeff Kaplan revealed in February that the developers are planning to remove the 2 CP assault mode entirely in Overwatch 2. So it doesn’t make sense to make huge changes to a map that they intend to retire for the sequel anyway.
Since players refuse to play the map, keeping it in the map pool ultimately just leads to more wasted queue times and more angry memes of Twitter about how Paris is the worst. It’s time for Paris to be taken out of the quickplay and competitive map rotation.
Aaron is an esports reporter with a background in media, technology, and communication education.