Episode 8 Deadlock Buffs – Is She Good Now?

Episode 8 Deadlock Buffs: What You Need to Know

At the end of Episode 7 Deadlock received buffs to her GravNet. With Episode 8, both her Sonic Sensor and Barrier Mesh also received buffs. This article will go over the buffs and discuss how to best use Deadlock and where she fits into the meta.

Deadlock’s Buffs

Each of Deadlock’s core abilities got a buff. The first to discuss is the GravNet:

  • GravNet
    • Increased the pull and mobility loss of being debuffed by GravNet
    • A player in the GravNet will indefinitely have the debuff until it is removed
    • Removal time increased from 0.85 seconds >> 1.5 seconds
    • The radius of GravNet increased from 6 meters >> 8 meters

Next up is Barrier Mesh which only received one buff:

  • Barrier Mesh
    • Increased wall length from 6 meters >> 10 meters

Lastly is Sonic Sensor which received a plethora of buffs:

  • Sonic Sensor
    • Sonic Sensor can now be recalled in the middle of the round
    • Recall distance increased from 12 meters >> 27 meters
    • Decreased time to activate after being triggered from 1 second >> 0.5 seconds
    • Decreased time enemies can destroy once triggered from 0.65 seconds >> 0.5 seconds
    • Added an audio cue for Deadlock and hear allies if they are standing in the area of effect of the sensor

sensor pickup

How do these Buffs Help?

Quite a few of these buffs are a matter of “make number bigger”. Regarding the GravNet and Barrier Mesh, their larger dimensions make them much easier to hit enemies with and require less precision. These two abilities suffered from needing exact lineups to get them to hit the exact area you want. Barrier Mesh can also cover multiple angles now. Not only is the Barrier Mesh easier to throw where you want it to, but it will cover more area, doing its job better.

GravNet is easier to hit enemies with, and it is more punishing to an enemy if they are hit by it. You used to be able to crab walk out of the range and the buff would be dropped. Now the buff can only be removed by going through the 1.5-second animation. The enemy trapped has to decide if they commit to removing the net and give away their location with an audio cue, or to risk getting swung as they are barely able to move and are stuck in crouch.

gravnet size

Sonic Sensor is far more reliable with the changes made to it. The faster activation time makes it so enemies cannot run through its area of effect and so that it’s harder to destroy. The ability also got two very nice quality of life changes. First, you can pick it up and relocate it. This doesn’t have a cooldown similar to picking up a Cypher Trapwire. The other is the audio cue for Deadlock and allies in its concuss area. This helps you and your teammates stand in an ideal position to not get hit by the concuss.

Deadlock in the Current Meta

The main role of Deadlock is to stuff large pushes. She is very similar to Sage in this role, and they both are NOT a substitute for Cypher or Killjoy in watching flank and gaining passive information. Even if Deadlock’s kit is very strong, she is hard to justify as a good pick across all maps because she does not replace a traditional Sentinel, and she instead must replace the utility of a second Controller or Initiator. Double Controller and Initiator are also very strong in this current meta. Viper is a primary reason why double controller is so strong as she essentially serves in the same role as Sage and Deadlock of stuffing pushes as well as a Controller with vision-blocking utility.

barrier size

This is why she is only best suited on maps where there isn’t a need for a traditional Sentinel or you can go without a secondary Controller or Initiator. The other maps where her utility is very strong are retake-heavy maps. Her kit is very strong in the post-plant as she can stall and enemies have to make noise to defuse the spike. The limited role she serves will keep Deadlock as a niche pick. Her kit is much stronger, but not so oppressive that it is always worth dropping an agent with more versatile utility. The strength of her kit does make her a viable pick if you can play around the shortcomings of the team composition that were created from slotting her in.

How to Best Play Buffed Deadlock

Playing Deadlock is much easier now that her ability sizes have increased. She is less lineup-dependent as a result. To play her effectively you must recognize what her role is and what she does best. DEADLOCK DOES NOT WATCH FLANK. Her Sonic Sensor is not designed for this role, and it is a waste of the ability to use it this way. If anything it will bait you and your team into thinking flank is watched when it is not.

Deadlock is best served for stalling, stopping pushes on defense, and locking down post-plants on offense. When attacking she should be with those entering the site for trades so she is in position for post-plant. When the spike is down her utility is very strong, so she should be on site. She is not a good lurk like other Sentinels as none of her utility works passively while she is lurking.

On the defensive side, she should be in a spot that is commonly rushed. Her Sonic Sensors are best placed in areas where enemies are committed and you can swing concussed enemies. If Sonic Sensors are placed in an area where an attacker is not committed, they can back off and wait the concuss out. An example of this is on Bind B Site. If you place a Sonic Sensor for Garden in the location of the first picture they will either activate it in the choke where they can get back to cover or will hear it and be able to destroy it. If you place it in the location of the second picture they will more likely be running here, less likely to turn around to shoot the sensor, and are stunned in a location where you can swing them in the open.

deadlock sensor 1 deadlock sensor 2

In conclusion

Once considered a joke of an agent, Deadlock is viable in her current state. These recent buffs were almost like a new agent being added to the game because of how little she was played prior. Deadlock is now worth a try, especially early on when players are still not acclimated on how to play against her.