Much like an strategy or MOBA title, Overwatch's focus on competitive multiplayer means its constantly growing number of heroes and their various abilities undergo numerous changes basically every other week.
With Season 5 having launched in the early hours of this morning for European players, the time is nigh for a quick balance update to give some under-performing characters an all-important leg-up for the new 3-month competitive stint.
While Roadhog may have seen a fairly basic change, the more radical alterations sit with Reaper and McCree this time around. Feeling the movement lock on McCree's 'Deadaim' ultimate ability was costing him the chance of securing a worthwhile kill count, lock-on time has been reduced significantly while outgoing damage has received a boost if the player has positioned themselves in a spot where time is less of an issue. This means even in a quick-fire situation, McCree should still be able to throw out some decent damage rather than risk getting shot down in a hurry. Similarly, firing his ultimate ability from a safe location will reward McCree with a significantly more powerful shot.
Reaper, on the other hand, plays things far differently than McCree, Opting to get up-close and personal with his dual shotguns, Reaper would regain health by picking up the orbs left by his victims. Though typically making use of a tank heroes' larger body to land more hits with his sawn-off blasters, the Overwatch team felt it was tricky for him to stay alive long enough to tackle these foes without having any health to sap. Because of this, the 'orb' system has been removed entirely with Reaper's health now being regenerated by a fraction of the damage he causes with each hit - potentially nullifying the lower amounts of damage his bigger targets typically throw out. Here's the low-down.
- McCree - Buffed
- Targets now begin locking on after 0.2 seconds, instead of 0.8 seconds
- Damage accumulated over the first 1.0 seconds increased from 20 to 80 (damage per second after the first 1.0 seconds is unchanged)
- Reaper - Buffed
- The Reaping
- Removed health orbs
- Now regains 20% of all damage done to heroes as health
- Roadhog - Changed
- Head hitbox size reduced by 20%
- Scrap Gun
- Bullet damage decreased by 33%
- Fire rate increased by 30%
- Clip size increased from 4 to 5
As you can likely see, McCree and Reaper are going to be vastly different beasts from now on. If you're starting Ranked soon, be mindful that hearing McCree's famous 'High Moon' saying will likely mean immediate trouble. Just hide. As for Reaper, tanks should no longer expect to take him head-on or be prepared for a much tougher fight. There's a good chance he won't even have to dance around and risk missing a shot now.
Roadhog, though? The lowered bullet damage will likely mean a hook isn't always a death sentence. But that increased fire rate and clip size will mean there's less downtime between his dangerous shots for squishier heroes to dish out the damage in relative safety. It's worth noting that this patch is only present on the PTR at the minute, with many predicting it to reach the live game in time for the Anniversary Event's finale. Oh. And there's a new map coming, too.