In this Deathmatch Petra video, in a quiet corridor a McCree completely blindsides me because his footsteps are extremely quiet. Minutes later in the exact same spot, I can easily hear the loud footsteps of a Widowmaker who’s actually further away.
Obviously there’s no reason that the McCree footsteps can’t be as loud as the Widow’s, logically it’s not an issue with my sound system (the video was uploaded direct from PS4 to Youtube and the volume discrepancy is the same across devices, laptops, soundbar, smartphone, etc.). The loudness and quietness is being decided by the game. You will notice, strangely though, that the volume of the McCree flashbang IS loud and noticeable as it should be, but specifically his FOOTSTEPS are very quiet.
Obviously, a McCree at close quarters is an immensely greater threat than Widowmaker, so you would think his steps would be even louder than Widows. Someone shared a GDC conference video with me about how the Overwatch sound design team uses a modified version of HDR with an “Importance System” that adjusts the volume/filtering to address just this kind of issue by prioritizing enemy sounds according to “threat levels”:
But apparently, something funny is happening in the system that is categorizing certain enemy sounds at incorrect threat levels, as shown in the video. This has happened to me other times as well, e.g. as a Widowmaker a Mei will walk up to me from the side and kill me completely unannounced: I won’t hear the footsteps at all until she’s already freezing me dead.
The issue is that SOME footsteps will be extremely loud and very hearable as they should be, but then the most DANGEROUS ones won’t be heard until it’s too late. This is actually costing players matches and needs to be fixed. If at all possible, could a mod please send this thread to someone in the sound design team to look over? Thank you so very much, any help is greatly appreciated.