Blizzard made me for a moment. The latest beta patch notes from Overwatch show that the developers have decided to “tweak some hero changes.” The prospect that Anna could boost Nano with herself and her teammates seemed pretty perfect. That’s too bad.
There are many ridiculous changes in this patch. Is Zenyatta going to fly (more than it really is)? Do junkets have three traps? Did the mechanical D.Va droplet do 600 damage? Does the absolute echo last for 30 seconds? Is Sigma constrained by the gravity of the Earth? These look so ridiculous that it’s hard to be real. But at least for a short time.
You can actually mess with it with this current trial card. As with demo card tournaments, it is unlikely that most of these changes will be reflected in live games. After all, it’s an April Fools’ joke. Sure, googly is fun, but silly gameplay changes (at least away from the base game mode) are more welcome.
Ricochet Arrows? ✅
400 Health Tank Mei? ✅ ✅ ✅
These are just a few choice highlights from today’s experimental patch.
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) April 1, 2021
The problem is that some of these changes were requested by many members of the community, such as reclassifying Mi as a tank and allowing Doomfist’s Rocket Punch to move up. Anna’s self-boosting nanoscale and Moira mods are cool changes, but Hanzo’s scattered arrows aren’t needed to return or reset Bridget’s shield bash deceleration when she calls a whip shot. No one is here.
Below are full patch notes for Overwatch’s latest beta card and some hilarious developer comments.
Dev Comment: We’ve received feedback that Ana players don’t often see the immediate impact of their ult since it’s usually used on Genji and Winston who immediately jump out of range. With this change, Ana can also enjoy the fruits of her labor with powered up darts and damage reduction.
- Boosting an ally will now also boost Ana
Dev Comment: Point blank Coach Gun to the face now matches expectations more closely.
- Projectile damage increased from 6 to 9
- Can now deal critical damage
- Spread reduced by 50%
- No longer knocks back enemies
Dev Comment: Slightly-Less-Mortality Field just doesn’t have the same ring to it, but we can experiment. Maybe the device should be immortal so we can get by on a technicality.
Biotic Launcher (Secondary Fire)
- Direct grenade hits heal for 33% more health
- Now reduces damage by incoming by 50% instead of setting a minimum health value
- Cooldown reduced from 25 to 15 seconds
Dev Comment: Bastion still turns into a tank but is no longer tank-sized. We’ve also tightened up a few screws on his gun arm and the weapon spread just went away! Less beep-boop by volume, more pew-pew.
- Character scale reduced by 15%
- Weapon spread removed
Dev Comment: We’ve heard players get very excited about all things crowd control, so now with this sweet combo you can potentially up the stun time or I guess use it for mobility (ugh, boring).
- Hitting an enemy now resets the cooldown of Shield Bash
Dev Comment: The enemy team will often disrespectfully ignore pilot D.Va. It will now be more difficult to survive a mech being dropped on top of you.
- Now deals 600 damage to enemies on impact
- Ultimate charge cost reduced by 30%
doomfist can now rocket punch in any direction (up, down, left,right, etc) https://t.co/A39WXUmz9F
— Andy Bohan (@andygmb1) April 1, 2021
Dev Comment: And they say he could level a skyscraper. It’s really put a lot of creative restrictions on our skyscraper-themed hero ideas. This change should also address the issue of some Doomfist players occasionally touching the ground.
- Can now travel upward
Dev Comment: Echo players are actually some of the most helpful people around. They’re always saying things like, “here let me show you how it’s done”. This change should enable players to be more helpful to each other in-game.
- Duration increased from 15 to 30 seconds
Dev Comment: Unconfirmed rumor: Genji’s cybernetics are actually fueled by the blood of his fallen foes.
- Cooldown is now reset after eliminating a target
Dev Comment: Just scatter them around wherever you like and then claim that you totally lined that one up if it eliminates someone.
- Storm Arrows now ricochet off the environment
Dev Comment: Players weren’t spending enough time admiring the beautiful floor textures so we’re enabling Junkrat to place a few more hazards about. Discovery is a very powerful and exciting motivator so now there will potentially be even more surprises lurking beneath the ground.
- Can now have up to 3 traps active at the same time
- Cooldown reduced from 10 to 7 seconds
Dev Comment: Tinnitus is not a joke. Don’t let it happen to you.
Amp It Up
- Now also increases the strength of Soundwave’s knockback
Dev Comment: Bullets work strangely in the future. As do tumbleweeds.
Peacekeeper (Primary Fire)
- Headshots now refund 1 ammo
- No longer limited to 1 tumbleweed
Dev Comment: An Ice Wall is literally a physical barrier. But Mei can also do a lot of damage. Can’t you see this endless conflict is tearing us apart?
- Reassigned to the Tank role
- Character scale increased 15%
- Health increased from 250 to 400
Dev Comment: Now would be a poor time to underestimate the surprising amount of damage Mercy’s Caduceus Blaster can do. There is no escape. I am sorry.
- Can now target enemies
Dev Comment: There’s certainly a desire to get in close and deal some damage when playing Moira so we’ll lean into that but also pull in the opposite direction by incentivizing actually healing allies. steepled-fingers-maniacal-scheming intensifies
Biotic Grasp (Secondary Fire)
- Range decreased from 20 to 15 meters
- Damage increased from 50 to 75 damage per second
- Cooldown reduced by 1 second for every 100 health restored to an ally with Biotic Grasp (Primary Fire)
Dev Comment: Orisa is still learning to take full advantage of her quadruped locomotion. We expect this gameplay change will help deepen players’ connection to the hero while roleplaying as a nascent, centaur-like omnic entrusted with becoming the protector of Numbani.
- Forward run speed increased by 40%
Dev Comment: We’re nerfing Barrage so that it will now on average result in one less player death.
- Cooldown reduced from 9 to 6 seconds
- Can now move while casting
Dev Comment: Recent studies have concluded that incorporeal specters, such as wraiths, are more intimidating whilst airborne.
- Cast time reduced from 1.5 to 1 seconds
- Now grants flight for its duration