Overwatch Sept 18 update nerfs Ashe, buffs Roadhog & McCree: patch notes - Dexerto
Overwatch

Overwatch Sept 18 update nerfs Ashe, buffs Roadhog & McCree: patch notes

Published: 18/Sep/2020 19:57 Updated: 18/Sep/2020 21:44

by Michael Gwilliam

Share


A new Experimental Overwatch patch has just gone live on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch featuring a bunch of balance changes to multiple heroes.

As noted by Community Manager Josh Nash, these changes don’t have a theme, but the intent is to modify numbers relating to heroes to improve their performance.

Advertisement

“These changes are not intended to be hugely impactful to gameplay,” he wrote.

The big loser this patch is Ashe, who sees her Dynamite damage drop from 75 to 50. Given how powerful the character has become recently, it’s probably for the best that Dynamite is toned down a notch.

Advertisement
Baptiste uses his Ultimate on Eichenwalde
Blizzard Entertainment
Baptiste’s Ultimate cost has been lowered.

The rest of the heroes listed, however, were buffed nicely. Perhaps even too much so, as many players have felt the game is in a good spot as of late.

Baptiste’s Ultimate cost has been decreased by 15%, which should help him out a bit as his healing has decreased drastically.

Elsewhere, McCree has received an amusing change where he can now use Combat Roll in the air and its distance has been increased by 20%.

Advertisement
McCree and Zarya on Hollywood
Blizzard Entertainment
McCree’s roll has been buffed.

This could be interesting as you could now potentially drop from the high ground and roll to reload in the process.

Additionally, Flashbang’s stun duration has been increased very slightly from 0.7 to 0.8 seconds.

Orisa on the other hand is probably the biggest winner this patch as her base armor is increased from 200 to 250 and her projectile speed goes from 90 to 120. This could be a huge deal, especially in combination with Roadhog’s buffs.

Advertisement

Speaking of which, Hog now pulls enemies even closer with his Chain Hook which should in theory make his combo all the deadlier and confirm kills.

Hopefully, we don’t devolve into an Orisa-Hog meta again, but only time will tell. These changes are, after all, only in Experimental Mode, but most changes tested there do end up going live eventually.

Advertisement

Full patch notes:

EXPERIMENTAL MODE

The next experiment begins! This time we’re hoping to get your feedback on some balance updates. We’re using the 2-2-2 Role Queue ruleset so that you can get a feel for how these balance changes might affect the live game.

HERO UPDATES (ONLY IN EXPERIMENTAL)

Ashe

Dynamite

  • Explosion damage reduced from 75 to 50

Developer Comments: Ashe is still a bit too powerful, but we’d like to keep her rifle feeling impactful so we’re taking some power out of her Dynamite ability.

Baptiste

Amplification Matrix

  • Ultimate cost decreased 15%

Developer Comments: Baptiste generates a majority of his ultimate charge through area-of-effect healing. As we reduced area healing values recently, we’re also scaling down the cost of his ultimate.

McCree

Combat Roll

  • Can now be activated in the air
  • Distance increased 20%

Flashbang

  • Stun duration increased from 0.7 to 0.8 seconds

Developer Comments: After scaling down the damage output of McCree’s primary fire, we’re looking to give back a bit of power through improvements to his abilities.

Orisa

General

  • Base armor increased from 200 to 250

Fusion Driver

  • Projectile speed increased from 90 to 120

Developer Comments: Increased projectile speed will help Orisa’s weapon feel more responsive, reducing the need to lead targets. We found that recent adjustments to Orisa’s abilities were more impactful than we originally anticipated and have increased her armor to compensate.

Roadhog

Chain Hook

  • Now pulls targets 0.5 meters closer (3.5 meters down to 3.0 meters)

Developer Comments: After the last round of shotgun improvements, Roadhog’s Chain Hook combo still wasn’t effective against some of the smaller enemy heroes. This change pulls targets closer to melee range for swifter, more reliable combo execution.

Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun

Share


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. 

Advertisement

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. 

Advertisement
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.

Advertisement

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.”

Advertisement

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.

Advertisement