Overwatch screenshot of Echo attacking

[Update #2]: As expected, Blizzard has now announced some major changes to the Hero Pools system.

[Update]: It seems that the Overwatch team is a bit preoccupied with other matters given that they just released an experimental update that's trying to nerf Crowd Control effects across the board.

Overwatch recently changed how the Hero Pools (or hero bans) system works for both Competitive Play and the Overwatch League. Instead of being entirely separate, one curated by Blizzard and the other based on pro pickrates, the new system randomly chooses 1 tank, 1 support and 2 DPS heroes based only on play rates in high-level ranked matches.

Unfortunately, this system has already hit a bit of a snag. As a part of the next set of bans, Competitive Play will be entirely devoid of Orisa, Moira, Tracer, and oddly enough, Echo. So even though she arrived a mere week ago and people still haven't gotten over the novelty factor, Echo will be unavailable from Competitive Play for an entire week.

Needless to say, I'm not exactly pleased with this development. On the Overwatch League side, the only thing these bans have done is further enforce the already well-established meta. As for us common folk in ranked mode, the way the system works pretty much guarantees that any sort of new and interesting heroes will get banned over and over again before people can even properly discover their power level and synergies. 

I can only hope Blizzard will adjust this before the bans go live, as well as ideally rework how the entire system functions. After all, Hero Pools as an idea are great. They keep the competitive experience fresh and interesting by essentially cleaving the meta team compositions in half, but they definitely need to be a bit more targeted in order to avoid situations like this week's where pretty much only the 'almost-meta' heroes got kicked out.

The good news is that Blizzard has been pretty darn responsive to community feedback over the past few months, to the point that they even removed Horizon Lunar Colony and Paris from ranked play, so I do believe they'll be able to sort this problem out soon enough. Until then, have fun with Echo in competitive while you still can!