Overwatch’s latest patch, which is currently available in the PC’s Public Test Region, is going to be the multiplayer shooter’s largest to date. Aside from the fact that a new hero, Ana, is set to be released and hero stacking is going to be banned in Competitive Play, there are going to be major changes to three heroes in order to restore a bit more balance to the proceedings. Mercy, D.Va and Zenyatta are all set to receive updates, with Mercy receiving a combination of a buff and a nerf and Zenyatta and D.Va getting pretty significant buffs.
Mercy is going to have an increased Ultimate cost, 30% specifically, as Blizzard found that Resurrect was being used a bit too much for its liking. However, Mercy isn’t going to be made into a worse hero, as a couple of major buffs are coming her way. First and foremost, players will no longer be immobile when using Resurrect, as Blizzard found that Mercy players were getting killed far too much in the middle of these major match swings. In addition to this, Mercy’s Guardian Angel ability, which allows her to fly directly to another nearby ally, will be instantly reset upon using her Ultimate, meaning that she will have further mobility after bringing her teammates back into the fight. Finally, Mercy’s Damage Boost will see its effectiveness increased from 30% to 50%. According to Blizzard, “…we always intended Mercy’s Damage Boost beam to be her primary method for dealing damage, but it often felt so weak that you were better off pulling out your blaster. To help address this, we’ve slightly increased its potency.”
A D.Va buff has been long-rumored, and now it’s finally about to hit the battlefield. There are so many changes to Overwatch’s resident mech-using gamer that it’s best to list them out in bullet-point form, as the intricacies can get slightly confusing:
- Defense Matrix
- Cooldown decreased from 10 seconds to 1 second
- A new resource meter has been added. This meter will deplete while Defense Matrix is active and then recharge when it’s not in use.
- Defense Matrix takes 10 seconds to reach full charge from empty
- At a full charge, Defense Matrix will last for 4 seconds
- Defense Matrix will now remain active as long as its assigned hotkey is held
- Defense Matrix has been reclassified as an alternate fire and is now bound to RMB (by default)
- An option to “Toggle Defense Matrix” has been added under Options > Controls > D.Va
- Ultimate cost decreased by 15%
- Explosion delay reduced from 4 seconds to 3 seconds
- Explosion no longer damages D.Va (the player who activates it)
While players thought that D.Va would be receiving a damage boost with her buff, it turns out that her mech survivability is the focus here, with Defense Matrix functioning similarly to Pharah’s jetpack in that it can be pretty much used constantly. Players are going to be able to block damage for pretty much as long as they want, with a one-second cooldown required for resetting her projectile-blocking ability. The catch here is that in order to have a full Defense Matrix charge, you’re going to have to wait ten seconds, so momentary blocking will pretty much be possible always, but extended use is going to have the same charge time as the previous cooldown.
In addition, D.Va’s Ultimate, Self-Destruct, is going to be a bit more usable. This was widely considered to be the worst ultimate ability in the game, as it was a bit too easy to die from its use without getting any kills due to the four-second fuse time. With a three-second delay and a decreased Ultimate cost, Self-Destruct is going to be far more useful for clearing out and holding capture points.
Finally, Zenyatta is getting a couple of pretty significant usability updates, with the biggest change being a shield count increase of fifty, making his total health/shield pool 200 instead of 150. Aside from this survivability increase, Zenyatta’s Orb of Harmony and Orb of Discord will pretty much instantly hit their intended target, with their projectile speed increasing from 30 to 120. Finally, Zenyatta is going to have much more mobility when he uses his Transcendence Ultimate, giving Overwatch’s slowest hero double the movement speed upon its activation. It’s also worth noting that the base healing of Transcendence has been increased to 300 from 200, making it far more effective for pushing a payload or onto a capture point.
For more information on Overwatch, stay tuned to Hardcore Gamer for the latest.