Overwatch Feb 6 PTR patch notes: massive Brigitte nerfs & Symmetra buffs - Dexerto
Overwatch

Overwatch Feb 6 PTR patch notes: massive Brigitte nerfs & Symmetra buffs

Published: 6/Feb/2020 20:05

by Michael Gwilliam

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A new Overwatch patch hit the Public Test Realm on February 6 featuring some major nerfs to Brigitte and a sizable buff to Symmetra’s damage.

With Hero Pools scheduled to hit the live version of the game in Season 21, Blizzard promised more frequent balance changes in an attempt to radically alter the meta quickly.

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In this PTR patch, three heroes were hit with nerfs: Wrecking Ball, Brigitte and Widowmaker. Meanwhile, Symmetra had her alternate fire damage increased from 120 to 140.

Blizzard Entertainment
Bad news, Ball mains. Hammond’s pile driver has been nerfed.

With this buff, Symmetra now has the highest damaging non-headshot projectile in the game. The second are Junkrat’s grenades, which deal 130 upon impact.

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For Wrecking Ball, his pile driver ability has gotten a big nerf with players now gaining back control after half a second. Previously, players lost control for one second.

Brigitte’s over-heal from repair pack was changed from 75 armor to 50, which will make flankers a bit easier to kill when the repair pack is applied to them.

Blizzard Entertainment
Brigitte’s healing suffered a major blow.

With Overwatch League teams preparing for their season debuts on February 8, rumors are suggesting that Brigitte is very strong when paired alongside a Lucio and that teams have been running this combo in scrims. This could be why the developers have chosen to nerf the shield-based support a bit.

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Of course, no nerf or buff is set in stone. As we saw recently, McCree’s health increase to 250 HP never hit the live servers after being tested on the PTR.

For fans of Brigitte, you can only hope that the same doesn’t happen to your hero, while the opposite can be said for Symmetra mains wanting to inflict even more damage on their adversaries.

Blizzard Entertainment
Widowmaker players will take a bit longer to fully charge their shots.

Here are the full February 6 patch notes:

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HERO UPDATES

Wrecking Ball

Piledriver

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  • Loss of air control reduced from 1 second to 0.5 seconds

Brigitte

Repair Pack

  • Armor over-heal reduced from 75 armor to 50 armor
  • HPS decreased from 60 to 55

Symmetra

Photon Projector (Secondary Fire)

  • Damage increased from 120 to 140

Widowmaker

Widow’s Kiss (Primary Fire)

  • Full charge time increased from 0.83 sec to 1 sec
Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun

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Blizzard Entertainment’s Vice President and Overwatch’s beloved Game Director Jeff Kaplan has revealed what he thinks is the ideal competitive meta for the expansive title.

Overwatch exists in many forms, from its highest ranks to its lowest, but the game’s competitive meta at the professional level has also varied greatly since the original release back in May 2016. 

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In the olden days, teams prioritized dive compositions led by Winston’s jumps and Tracer’s blinks. Then, in 2019, fans around the world either groaned or cheered as the divisive GOATS meta took center-stage, featuring a hefty squad built entirely with tanks and supports. 

Now, Kaplan is explaining his perspective on the game’s ideal state, following criticisms he levied back in July against the game’s double-shield reliance. Examining the game’s departure from a static, Orisa and Sigma-dependent environment, he dissects his compository ideology. 

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Brigitte stuns Junkrat on Volskaya
Blizzard Entertainment
Barriers have held an uncomfortably powerful role in Overwatch for a long time.

As discussed in an interview with the Loadout, Kaplan is both aware of the professional scene’s interests and the casual base’s tendencies. Coupling those factors, he believes the game is at its best when there is some blend of high skill caps and diverse team compositions.

“The most ideal, healthiest state of the game is when the meta is somewhat fluid, when the meta is more map dependent or team match up dependent than it is static. We’ve all seen those moments when the meta has been completely static and all six players will just play the same six heroes every time. I think that’s fun from a mastery standpoint, but I think it’s a lot more exciting for viewers when creativity and curiosity come into play,” he said.

When Kaplan refers to a “static” meta, the simplest example is 2019’s GOATS, where three healers (Brigitte, Lucio, and Moira) were coupled with three tanks (D.Va, Reinhardt, and Zarya) and would barrel into opponents.

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It took tremendous teamwork to be pulled off successfully against other professional teams, but many fans considered it more tedious than entertaining after months of gameplay.

In its current state, Overwatch is not completely balanced, but there is a degree of variety to it. That diversity seen in the Overwatch League spans downward into the casual ranks. Kaplan indicates that this is in line with his department’s hopes.

“I think most of our players would say in the ideal meta, all our heroes would be viable in some way competitively. I think as a competitive goal from a game designing and game balancing perspective that is extremely challenging, but it’s obviously what we strive to achieve.”

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While he assures that Overwatch would be completely balanced in an ideal world, in the meantime, his team would at least like to push toward a game that varies to some extent based on coaching, player preference, and map.

It remains to be seen if current and upcoming patches can accomplish that, but Kaplan’s emphasis on “fluidity” is a welcome driving force.

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