An overview for the biggest hero changes in the mid-season patch for Overwatch 2.
The Season 4 PvP event “Starwatch” has finally made its way to our star system, and with it comes a whole slew of brand new hero changes. These considerable performance adjustments affect a wide variety of heroes in the Blizzard's popular shooter RPG. On top of that, we're also getting huge quality-of-life updates for a lot of playable characters that add new hero settings and user interface mods. With that, let's dive into the new updates. Here are the biggest changes coming to Overwatch 2:
New Ping Update
Improvements on the Overwatch 2 Ping system has been long overdue. This is significant due to certain ping messages getting mixed up, most common among these being the “Group Up” ping. To remedy this, the Overwatch 2 team is now letting players use the voice command while we wait for the respawn. We are also getting a new option to switch which ping is used when aiming at your allies.
Controls -> Communication -> Ping – Options -> Enable Contextual Comms Wheel
Lastly, Junker Queen will now be able to ping enemies behind walls if her knife is attached to them. Similarly, Zenyatta does the same with his Orb of Discord.
Matchmaking Improvements for Returning Players
In a recent Director's Take blogpost, Game Director Aaron Keller mentioned that returning players were a major factor in calculating the game's overall matchmaking rank scale. Now we've received some confirmation (albeit lacking) on the subject in the mid-season changes list. Here, Blizzard merely states that the matchmaking system has been buffed with numerous improvements geared towards quickly re-calibrating a returning Overwatch 2 player's MMR, but time will tell if we'll be getting a more substantial overview in the future.
Better Survivability for Junker Queen
The ruler of the wastelands is swinging back into the meta with a strong focus on her passive healing. Not only is her Jagged Blade projectile size bigger now, but Adrenaline Rush's healing has been boosted from 1.5x to 2x. To balance it out, her Rampage deals less Wound damage now. Still, the difference being replaced with impact damage means that her ultimate ability still delivers the same Junkertown brand of hurt.
Faster Ultimate for Echo’s “Duplicate”
To put more focus on her copying mechanic, Echo's Duplicate ultimate ability charge has been reduced by 25%. This is a huge buff that was designed to make players enjoy what makes Echo truly special: kicking someone's butt on the enemy team using their selected hero.
More Damage for Junkrat’s Concussion Mines
Junkrat mains rejoice! The tinkerer from the Australian wastes now has more lethal tools under his belt. Going forward, his Concussion Mines now deal a whopping 110 damage to buff his grenade and mine combos. Now we're cooking with gas!
Less Healing From Ana’s Biotic Grenade
Sadly, the best backline support in Overwatch 2 is getting a downgrade this season. Biotic Grenade, one of Ana's most versatile tools is getting a huge amount of healing potential shaved off. Mostly used to save multiple lives in a pinch, Ana's grenade – which previously healed 100 HP – now recovers a measly 60HP. Without even a buff for the cooldown, many fans are now uncertain of the off-healer's capabilities in the current meta.
Don’t ask an Ana player what happened on May 9th 2023 pic.twitter.com/2M8pGGxgS5
— Bailey (@PizzaPenguin_) May 9, 2023
Life Grip No Longer Cancels Earthshatter
One of the biggest gripes the player base had with Lifeweaver was that his Life Grip ability completely cancelled Reinhardt's signature ultimate ability. That is no longer the case after this patch, as ulting Reinhardt tanks are no longer a viable target when they use Earthshatter. The same also goes when they are being pulled. Now, pressing Q as Reinhardt gets you out of Lifeweaver's Life Grip.
Added Hero-Specific Options
Last on this list are the new hero-specific options in the game's settings. Players can now customize UI and ability-related functions for their preferred Overwatch 2 experience. Among the most notable are the options to stop Healing Ofuda from interrupting Kiriko's Kunai reload, changing which button places Lifeweaver's Tree of Life and setting Baptiste's Aplification Matrix default rotation. As always, you can find the extensive May 9, 2023 list of updated hero options on the official Patch Notes website.
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