Overwatch March 11 update buffs Pharah, Sigma, Genji & more: patch notes

Blizzard Entertainment

A new Overwatch patch has just gone live on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch, bringing in a bunch of buffs to multiple DPS heroes and Sigma.

This update was delayed a bit to give the developers a bit of time to look at feedback after the changes were tested in the game’s Experimental Mode. Now, however, they’ve gone live and for a lot of fans, it’s big news.

One of the biggest changes this patch is with Genji who gets a bit of a buff and a slight nerf as well to compensate. His Shuriken recovery time has been reduced from 0.75 to 0.68 seconds, which means he’ll be able to shoot more.

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Because he’ll be shooting more and thereby doing more damage, however, the developers decided to adjust his Dragon Blade ultimate cost by increasing it by 15%.

Genji Overwatch slashBlizzard Entertainment
Genji has been hit with a nice buff overall.

Nonetheless, this isn’t a massive increase and Genji players should enjoy the enhanced freedom that comes with less downtime between bursts.

Mei has also been given a substantial buff and one that some players think would have been cut from the patch. Her Cryo-Freeze self-healing has been buffed, letting her heal for 50 HP per second. This is a big change from her previous 37.5.

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Pharah has also been buffed in the form of her Hover Jets regeneration rate. Now, Pharah players should be able to stay in the sky longer thanks to the fuel coming back online faster.

Sigma uses his experimental barrierBlizzard Entertainment
Sigma can now use his barrier way more often.

It will be interesting to see how this buff plays out on console where Pharah can be a much bigger threat than on PC.

Reaper is also a big winner as his shotgun damage per pellet has been buffed by 0.5. While this may not seem like much, the fact we’re talking about multiple pellets per shot means this will add up.

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Combined with Reaper’s life steal mechanic, and this seems like a power improvement to his kit.

Blizzard Entertainment
Reaper could prove to be a massive threat with increased damage.

Finally, rounding out the buffs, Sigma’s Experimental Barrier cooldown has been buffed as its cooldown is reduced by 0.5 seconds. This should make Sigma into much more of a main tank as he can now recall and send out his barrier often.

Full patch notes:




  • Recovery lowered from 0.75 to 0.68


  • Ultimate cost increased 15%

Developer Comments: We’re increasing Genji’s Shuriken fire rate to enable him to have more impact outside of his ultimate and increasing the cost of Dragonblade to account for the increased damage potential.

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  • Healing-per-second increased from 37.5 to 50

Developer Comments: A while ago there was a change to make Mei’s Cryo-Freeze collision consistent with her Ice Wall, meaning she could no longer be targeted by allies while inside the block of ice. We’re increasing her Cryo-Freeze healing rate since she isn’t able to be easily healed up by her allies during that time.



  • Hover Jets regeneration rate increased from 35 to 43

Developer Comments: The intent for Pharah’s Hover Jet fuel adjustments is to find a balance where it enables her to maintain an altitude reasonably well with careful fuel and cooldown management, but not so easily climb to the extreme heights some map ceilings allow for as it can lead to less interactive gameplay.

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Hellfire Shotguns

  • Damage per projectile increased from 5.5 to 6

Developer Comments: The recent adjustment to Reaper’s shotguns ended up being less beneficial than intended so we’re increasing the damage per projectile slightly.


Experimental Barrier

  • Cooldown reduced from 2.5 to 2.0 seconds

Developer Comments: While the previous cooldown increase for Experimental Barrier had the intended effect of opening up more counterplay, there may be a tuning value that feels less restrictive for Sigma and still achieves those goals.



  • Energy drain rate increased from 1.6 to 1.8 per second

Developer Comments: Zarya has been overperforming in a variety of team compositions so the increased drain rate will bring her average energy level down slightly between engagements.

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