A new patch is now live on Windows PC. While the most interesting thing about it is the release of a new hero, Ana, it’s nowhere near close to the only point of interest. Ana was already discussed in a previous article right here, so let’s dive into the rest of the changes.
First of all, Blizzard decided to adjust team’s ability to stall out the game in Overtime by making the fuse tick more quickly if Overtime lasts for more than 20 seconds. Also, dead players will respawn slower, taking 2 seconds longer than before. This is good in my opinion. Overtime is supposed to be a short burst of excitement and chaos in a close match, not a marathon of who can survive the longest.
Competitive Hero Limit
The second change mentioned in the patch notes is also one of the most universally requested. Starting with this patch, a one hero per team limit will come into effect. No more double Tracer, double Winston, double Lucio or double anything else. That said, nothing changes in Quick Play. Your six Symmetra wet dream is safe, go ahead if you can convince the rest of the team to do it.
The first change mentioned in the Patch notes wasn’t talked about that much. Starting now, self-healing will charge your Ult. To compensate a little bit, Ult cost have been increased. To be honest, I’m fine with that. It provides options while also trying to prevent the change from becoming overwhelming on Bastion, Lucio, Soldier: 76, and Roadhog. The Hog’s ult cost increase was by far the biggest (45%), while the rest had it increased by 10%. This makes sense because Roadhog self-heals way more than the rest. As an example, Soldier: 76 can heal himself for 175 HP, while Roadhog gets 300 on a shorter cooldown.
Secondly, aiming to fix D.Va’s playability issues, Blizzard overworked its Defense Matrix, while also buffing her Ult, Self-Destruct. Let’s discuss all of her changes in order. First of all, Defense Matrix cooldown got reduced to 1 second from 10. Then, it got changed to have a resource meter which gets used up when the Matrix is in use, recharging when it’s off. If you have full resource, Defense Matrix will last you 4 seconds and take ten seconds to recharge back to full. It is reclassified as alternate fire, which will remain active as long as your right mouse button is pressed. Also, you can make it toggle on or off similar to Widowmaker’s scope under Options -> Controls -> D.Va. Finally, D.Va’s ult also got buffed by decreasing her ult cost by 15%, reducing the time it takes for her Mech to explode by 1 second (4 -> 3), and protecting D.Va herself from her Mech’s explosion damage. Now, you will have less time to get away from the damage if D.Va is your opponent, while also letting you to eject and keep shooting enemies with no fear if you ARE the D.Va.
McCree also got buffed a little bit to reinforce his new identity as a sort of long-range sniper with his hitscan primary attack. Now, he will maintain full damage at longer ranges, but deal less at extreme distances to compensate for it.
Together with the small buff to McCree, Soldier: 76 got nerfed a little bit. Before, the best way to shoot with the champion was by holding primary attack for five shots or so when bullets were completely accurate, release the attack and immediately press it again to continue shooting accurately. Now, bullet spread will not reset immediately. With this change, Soldier’s long range spraying is nerfed a little bit.
On the PTR, Blizzard was playing with the possibility of increasing Mercy’s damage boost to 50% instead of the 30% she enjoys now. The patch went live without this change. What she did get was the removal of damage boost stacking from two or more Mercys. Also, her Ult cost got increased by 30%, however, you will also be able to move when activating it and get out of there with your Left Shift, Guardian Angel to avoid death in case you jump into the fray to resurrect your teammates.
Finally, Blizzard finally did something about the viability of Zenyatta. They increased her base shield by 50, bringing her effective health up to 200, but reducing her primary attack’s damage by 5 (now 40). To compensate and encourage players to use it more, they buffed the secondary attack by 5 damage (now 40.) Also, Blizzard quadrupled the projectile speed of Orb of Discord and Orb of Harmony from 30 to 120. Finally, Zenyatta’s ult, Transcendence, was also buffed, making the Omnic Monk move twice as fast when his Ult is active and healing for 300 HP per second instead of the 200 it was before. You will not be able to heal through enemy Ults that one shot your team, however, sustained damage will be even more survivable now. Unless Ana drops a grenade on your team, of course.