Overwatch 2 May 9 Starwatch patch nerfs Ana, buffs Junker Queen, Junkrat, Echo, more

Michael Gwilliam
overwatch 2 starwatch eventBlizzard Entertainment

A massive new Overwatch 2 patch just went live on PC, Xbox, PlayStation and Nintendo Switch with some major changes to the cast, alongside a new Starwatch event.

The big new addition to this May 9 patch is the arrival of Starwatch, a special PvE-PVP combo game mode where players will need to capture four objectives.

Starwatch will run until May 22 and its story will be continued depending on which side wins more matches: the Watchers or the Infinite Empire.

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On the hero balance side of things, there are numerous buffs and nerfs across the board, including some big ones to Junker Queen. The tank sees her ammo increased to 8, her Jagged Blade projectile size increased and Adrenaline Rush’s healing multiplier increased from 1.25 to 2x.

junker queen posing in overwatch 2Blizzard Entertainment
Junker Queen has been given some big buffs.

Orisa is also getting a minor buff, with a small damage increase with her Fusion Driver going from 12 to 13. Speaking of damage increases, Junkrat’s Concussion Mine impact is also going up, now dealing 110 maximum damage.

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In a big Echo buff, her Ultimate cost is getting decreased by 25%, meaning she will be using Duplicate quite a bit more, but her ultimate charge while in Duplicate is decreased from 5.5x to 4x.

However, there are some nerfs in this patch, as well – and a pretty big one for Ana. The support is having her Biotic Grenade’s healing decreased by 40, meaning that she will be a bit more vulnerable.

Wrecking Ball is also getting a nerf to his tankiness with his Adaptive Shield effect going up to 9 seconds.

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Full patch notes:

EVENT UPDATES

New Event – Starwatch: Galactic Rescue

  • Battle for the fate of the galaxy in this new four-point Assault mode. Side with the Watcher rebels alongside the mighty Bonebreaker to rescue 3CH-0 from the Infinite Galactrius starship. Or serve the Infinite Empire and use the starship’s security systems to defend against the intruders. Your choice will decide the fate of the galaxy, for whichever side wins more battles by the end of the event will reign supreme!
  • Complete event challenges to unlock limited-time cosmetics, like the Asteroid Wrecking Ball epic skin, as well as up to 50,000 Battlepass experience.

Battle for Olympus Returns

  • To celebrate Zeus Junker Queen’s victory from Season 2’s Battle for Olympus event, we are bringing back the game mode for a limited-time, including a new Team Deathmatch version! To further commemorate the victors of Season 2, a statue of the god herself has been erected in Ilios.

GENERAL UPDATES

Ping System

  • “Group Up” can now be used while dead.
  • Added a new setting to Controls → Communication → Ping – Options → Enable Contextual Comms Wheel. When Enabled, this setting changes “Group Up” and “Need Healing” to use alternate comms when aiming at allies. This setting is “Off” by default.
  • Junker Queen can now ping targets through surfaces that her knife is stuck in, in the same way that Zenyatta can ping targets his Discord is attached to.

Push Game Mode Update

  • The respawn time for players is increased by 2 seconds from 10s to 12s while their team’s forward spawn location is activated.

Developer Comments: Forward spawn locations were proving to be too advantageous for the team with the lead, making it a bit too difficult for the disadvantaged team to mount a comeback.

Matchmaking

  • MMR decay system has received multiple improvements aimed at more quickly and accurately re-calibrating players when they return from a long period of inactivity.

COMPETITIVE UPDATES

Competitive Deathmatch

  • The 2023 Competitive Deathmatch season begins on May 16!

HERO UPDATES

TANK

Junker Queen

Scattergun

  • Maximum ammo increased from 6 to 8

Jagged Blade

  • Projectile size increased from 0.15 to 0.20 meters

Rampage

  • Now deals 40 impact damage
  • Wound damage decreased from 100 to 60

Adrenaline Rush

  • Adrenaline passive healing multiplier increased from 1.25 to 2x damage dealt by wounds

Developer Comments: These changes increase Junker Queen’s front-line presence by increasing her self-healing and offensive sustainability. We’ve also increased Jagged Blade’s projectile size so it’s more consistent to land.

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Orisa

Augmented Fusion Driver

  • Damage increased from 12 to 13

Developer Comments: Orisa often gets a lot of value with her abilities but she is underperforming compared to other tanks. Increasing her weapon damage will make her a more of an immediate threat after closing the distance with the enemy team.

Winston

Jet Pack

  • Damage radius before falloff begins increased from 1 to 1.3 meters

Developer Comments: It’s difficult to deal full damage with Winston’s leap due to needing to land almost directly on the enemy hero. Increasing this range will improve its consistency.

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Wrecking Ball

Adaptive Shield

  • Effect duration decreased from 9 to 7 seconds

Developer Comments: Adaptive Shields gives Wrecking Ball a lot of leeway in a fight due to its duration. This change to Adaptive Shields limits his survivability during prolonged engagements.

DAMAGE

Echo

Duplicate

  • Ultimate cost reduced 25%
  • Ultimate generation decreased from 5.5x to 4x while Duplicate is active

Developer Comments: The following changes increase the flexibility of Echo’s Duplicate ultimate and shift some of its focus away from the allure of building multiple copied ultimates in a single use. This puts more of an emphasis on choosing a Duplicate target based on the hero’s overall utility for a given situation, with the benefit of increased survivability due to transforming. Echo will get her ultimate more frequently but it will be more difficult to generate the copied hero’s ultimate.

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Junkrat

Concussion Mine

  • Maximum damage increased from 100 to 110

Developer Comments: The previous adjustment to Concussion Mine’s maximum damage lowered the effectiveness of Junkrat’s grenade and mine combos too much so we are increasing the damage amount slightly.

SUPPORT

Ana

Biotic Grenade

  • Explosion healing decreased from 100 to 60

Developer Comments: Ana’s survivability has improved significantly ever since the addition of the support passive. We are reducing the amount of healing provided by the Biotic Grenade explosion as she doesn’t need to rely on it for self-healing as much as before.

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Baptiste

Immortality Field

  • Cooldown decreased from 25 to 23 seconds

Developer Comments: Immortality Field provides powerful utility, but its long cooldown means that Baptiste often has to wait for the perfect opportunity to use it. We’re decreasing its cooldown slightly to promote more flexibility in usage, though it will still be uncommon to see it in more than once per engagement.

Kiriko

  • Kunai reloads after 65% percent of the animation has completed (formerly 75%)
  • New Hero option: “Healing Ofuda Cancels Reload”

Dev Comment: Kiriko sometimes accidentally interrupts her Kunai reload with Ofuda. Kunai now reloads slightly sooner during the animation to mitigate this. In addition, there is now a hero option, “Healing Ofuda Cancels Reload,” which can be turned off to bypass this issue entirely.

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Lifeweaver

Life Grip

Reinhardt is no longer a valid target for Life Grip during Earthshatter and using Earthshatter will cancel Life Grip.

Developer Comment: Earthshatter is an ultimate where positioning is critical to effectively use, so we are adjusting it so that Reinhardt doesn’t have their ultimate be effectively canceled when Lifeweaver uses Life Grip.

HERO OPTION UPDATES

In addition to the hero balance adjustments in this update, we are implementing multiple quality-of-life settings for several heroes to give you the ability to custom-tailor your experience of playing your favorite heroes.

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TANK

D.Va

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hide Boosters Cancel Text – Off by default
  • Hide Boosters Timer – Off by default

Doomfist

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

Hand Cannon UI – On by default

  • Hold To Use Power Block – Off by default
  • Hide Power Block Cancel Text – Off by default
  • Hide Rocket Punch Meter – Off by default
  • Hide Rocket Punch Cancel Text – Off by default

Orisa

Terra Surge can now be activated by pressing the Ultimate button again

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hide Fortify Timer – Off By default
  • Hold To Use Javelin Spin – Off By default
  • Hide Javelin Spin Cancel Text – Off By default

Ramattra

Block now respects holding the input through being stunned.

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Toggle Block – Off by default
  • Hide Nemesis Form Cancel Text – Off by default
  • Relative Aim Sensitivity During Nemesis Form – 100% by default
  • Relative Gyro Aim Sensitivity During Nemesis Form – 100% by default (only available on gyro-supported platforms)
  • Annihilation Cancel Input – Ability 1 by default

Reinhardt

Added the Hero-Specific Options

  • Relative Aim Sensitivity During Barrier Field – 100% by default
  • Relative Gyro Aim Sensitivity During Barrier Field – 100% by default (only available on gyro-supported platforms)
  • Hold To Use Charge – Off by default
  • Hide Charge Cancel Text – Off by default

Roadhog

Added the Hero-Specific Option

  • Hide Whole Hog Timer – Off by default

Sigma

Gravitic Flux now automatically casts when the timer runs out

Winston

Added the Hero-Specific Option:

  • Toggle Secondary Fire – Off by default

Wrecking Ball

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Pressing the Quick Melee button now cancels Roll

Added the Hero-Specific Option:

Toggle Quick Melee During Roll

DAMAGE

Bastion

Configuration: Artillery now automatically casts when the timer runs out

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Relative Aim Sensitivity During Reconfigure – 100% by default
  • Relative Gyro Aim Sensitivity During Reconfigure – 100% by default (only available on gyro-supported platforms)

Cassidy

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hide Deadeye Timer – Off by default
  • Hide Deadeye Cancel Text – Off by default

Echo

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hold To Use Focusing Beam – Off by default
  • Hide Flight Cancel Text – Off by default
  • Hide Flight Timer – Off by default

Genji

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hold To Use Deflect – Off by default
  • Hide Deflect Cancel Text – Off by default

Mei

Cyro-Freeze can now be canceled by pressing the ability’s button again

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Hold To Use Cryo-Freeze – Off by default
  • Hide Cyro-Freeze Cancel Text – Off by default
  • Hide Cryo-Freeze Timer – Off by default
  • Default Ice Wall Rotation – Horizontal by default
  • Ice Wall Confirmation Input – Primary Fire by default

Pharah

Added the Hero-Specific Option

  • Toggle Hover Jets – Off by default

Reaper

Added the Hero-Specific Options

  • Hold To Use Wraith Form – Off by Default
  • Hide Wraith Form Cancel Text – Off by Default
  • Shadow Step Confirmation Input – Primary Fire by default

Sombra

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Added the Hero-Specific Option:

Toggle Hack – Off by default

Symmetra

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Toggle Secondary Fire – Off by default
  • Hold To Deploy Sentry Turret – Off by default
  • Teleporter and Photon Barrier Confirmation Input – Primary Fire by default
  • Default Photon Barrier Rotation – Horizontal by default
  • Hide Photon Barrier Timer – Off by default

Torbjörn

Added the Hero-Specific Option:

  • Hide Overload Timer – Off by default

Tracer

Added the Hero-Specific Option:

  • Blink UI – On by default

SUPPORT

Baptiste

Automatic Reload setting now reloads when both Primary and Secondary Fire are out of ammo if setting is set to Off

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Default Amplification Matrix Rotation – Horizontal by default
  • Amplification Matrix Confirmation Input – Primary Fire by default

Brigitte

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Relative Aim Sensitivity During Barrier Shield – 100% by default
  • Relative Gyro Aim Sensitivity During Barrier Shield – 100% by default (only available on gyro-supported platforms)
  • Repair Pack UI – On by default

Kiriko

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Healing Ofuda Cancels Reload – On by default

Lifeweaver

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Relative Thorn Volley Aim Sensitivity – 100% by default
  • Relative Thorn Volley Gyro Aim Sensitivity – 100% by default (Only available on gyro-supported platforms)
  • Tree of Life Confirmation Input – Primary Fire by default

Lúcio

Allow Backwards Wall Ride option now On by default

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Hold To Crossfade options changed from Off/On to Off/Hold For Speed/Hold For Heal.

Mercy

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Caduceus Blaster Input – Primary Fire by default
  • Relative Caduceus Blaster Aim Sensitivity – 100% by default
  • Relative Caduceus Blaster Gyro Aim Sensitivity – 100% by default (Only available on gyro-supported platforms)

Zenyatta

Added the Hero-Specific Options:

  • Harmony and Discord Orb Cancel Reload – On by default
  • Hide Transcendence Timer – Off by default

BUG FIXES

GENERAL

  • Resolved an issue that awarded the incorrect competitive Season 3 titles for some players
  • Fixed a bug in the Options menu that resulted in Communication Option changes to not save
  • Console – Fixed an issue that prevented you from navigating the competitive menu while in queue
  • Console – Fixed a bug on some consoles that prevented saving highlights
  • Console – Fixed a bug that prevented players on console from renaming Custom Game presets
  • Fixed a bug with Payload and Hybrid game modes displaying a debug string when the payload is pushed the end of the map
  • Resolved a bug where you were unable to view some Heroes weapons and/or equipment in the Hero Gallery
  • Fixed a bug with the camera sometimes becoming askew when the player’s movement was interrupted by negative statuses
  • Fixed an issue where some Maps were missing images on the Competitive Progress screen
  • Fixed a bug where a sound prompt was missing when you ranked down in Competitive modes

MAPS

Antarctic Peninsula

  • Removed a large misplaced shadow near the capture point in the Labs area

Busan

  • Fixed a bug with the drum in the Sanctuary area allowing player objects to be thrown/placed inside of it

Circuit Royale

  • Fixed some areas that allowed players to stand in unintended locations

Esperança

  • Starting Room: Replaced the indestructible vase to a regular ceramic vase that can shatter. Please break them at your own will.

Hollywood

  • Removed a planter near the first choke

Lijang Tower

  • Fixed in a previous update – Fixed a bug that allowed players to stand in unintended locations

Shambali Monastery

  • Fixed some areas on the map that would eat projectiles

HEROES

Ana

  • Fixed a bug where Biotic Grenade was only tracking self-hits

Ashe

  • Fixed a bug where Ashe’s accuracy became inconsistent during a jump and other movements

Bastion

  • Fixed a bug with the Assault Configuration playing an old reload animation if used as soon as you spawn

Brigitte

  • Fixed a bug which caused Brigitte’s extra armor during ‘Rally’ to not apply it’s 30% damage reduction correctly

Doomfist

  • Fixed a bug with Powerblock not correctly reducing area of effect damage
  • Fixed a bug with the Empowered buff from Meteor Strike not counting toward the Empowered Rocket Punch stat

D.Va

  • Fixed a bug with D.Va’s ‘Selfie’ highlight intro not removing the mech after the explosion when some skins were equipped

Genji

  • Fixed a bug where deflecting Kiriko or Lifeweaver’s healing projectiles did not heal your allies

Kiriko

  • Fixed a bug with Swift Step sometimes getting players stuck in the map

Lifeweaver

  • Fixed the issue with Lifeweaver’s Custom Game controls being broken after the controls update
  • Fixed an issue with the Petal Platform geometry not matching its projectile collision
  • Fixed a bug where your Life Grip target would bounce back if you activate the ability while you’re on an enemy Petal Platform and they are on a friendly Petal Platform
  • Fixed an issue with Life Grip failing and going on cooldown in some cases if used at the same time as your target activated an ability
  • Fixed a bug where Lifeweaver would auto-swap to Healing Blossom if Tree of Life was placed while Thorn Volley was active
  • Fixed the placement of Lifeweaver in the Hero Gallery and Hero Select

Mei

  • Fixed a bug with Ice Wall becoming unusable until cancelled after targeting an invalid location

Pharah

  • Fixed a bug with Concussive Blast only tracking self-hits

Ramattra

  • Fixed a bug with Nemesis form failing to go on cooldown if you die during the transformation
  • Fixed a bug with Nemesis form not activating and enabling its cooldown if you were knocked down while Annihilation mode is active and then attempted to activate Nemesis Form

Reaper

  • Fixed a bug with the Ambush Play of the Game not having a sniper reticle and some sounds when certain skins were equipped

Sojourn

  • Resolved an issue where the Disruptor could be attached to the Push bot

Sombra

  • Fixed a stat tracking issue where Health Pack healing was only counting self-healing

Widowmaker

  • Fixed a bug where Widowmaker could become stuck in the grappling animation if Grappling Hook was used on a moving platform

WORKSHOP

  • Fixed multiple issues related to Custom Projectiles

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About The Author

Michael Gwilliam is a senior writer at Dexerto based in Ontario, Canada. He specializes in Overwatch, Smash, influencers, and Twitch culture. Gwilliam has written for sites across Canada including the Toronto Sun. You can contact him at michael.gwilliam@dexerto.com or on Twitter @TheGwilliam