Overwatch welcomes 2017 with a new update. The update brings about small but massive changes to the gameplay;it is still in the PTR  ( Public Test Region). It will be released on the main client after being tested out in the Test Client.It brings about changes to several heroes such as Ana, Roadhog and D’va. Another update = also released a new map a few days ago on the main client. The new map is called Oasis and is the latest control point map to be added to Overwatch.

 

There are three points on the map with various approach paths. The distinguishing features of this map are the cars zooming past on the outskirts as well as the lone jump-pad on one of the capture points. It is unique to this map and has not been seen in any other map.

There are various points of entry onto the point and that makes retaking the point from various points of attack much easier on the map. It will be interesting to see how teams adapt to the new map.

As with any new map, we do not expect the map to be adopted quickly by professional teams. Teams usually take a lot of time to practice, theorycraft and scrim on new maps.

An update was posted to the PTR in the new year. This Update brings about much needed changes to certain heroes that were considered broken at large by the community.

The community has long been demanding changes to certain heroes. Heroes such as Roadhog, Ana are seen as being too powerful in the current meta.

RoadHog

Roadhog has been a central character of the game since launch. Roadhogs principal ability is his hook. He can hook enemy players closer to himself while dealing a lot of damage. The ability is very strong especially in team games such as Overwatch. It almost surely ensures a kill and gives a big advantage to Roadhog’s team.

The problem that the community ha with the way Roadhog’s skill works. It hooks players even through walls, around edges and through impassable terrain. Considering the fact that a hook almost surely guarantees a kill, it definitely is a broken ability.

Blizzard’s explanation of the hook

In a report on 4th of April 2016, Kotaku published a letter that Blizzard sent them.

“Under the hood of the Overwatch engine, Roadhog’s hook is basically a sphere that he throws out and searches for targets as it moves. If the hook finds a target, it will pull them back to you. We’re talking about various improvements to the hook to help solve odd edge cases, especially where the target is out of line of sight or unable to reasonable be moved back to Roadhog. It is not a hitscan attack.”

Roadhog’s hook however ends up targeting units beyond line of sight. It is a coding bug which results in some amusing and sometimes frustrating gameplay.

With the new update, the developers hope to fix much of the issues with Roadhog’s hooks

  • Chain Hook
    • Targets are now pulled directly in front of Roadhog (rather than straight to him), except in cases where Roadhog drastically rotates
    • Hooked targets are now released if they leave Roadhog’s line-of-sight before being pulled
    • Line-of-sight checks (which detect if targets should be initially hit by the hook) are now done from Roadhog’s position, rather than the hook’s position

 The hook should now feel more consistent for Roadhog players, but it should also feel more reasonable to his enemies, as they cannot be hooked or pulled around corners anymore.

Ana

If you watch any competitive Overwatch match today, you will see one hero always being picked. The hero is Ana. Ana is considered to be the biggest healer in the game right now. Her Biotic Grenade heals for a massive amount. This heal combined with the current tank meta, makes it impossible to kill certain heroes.
Biotic Grenade
  • Healing boost on allies has been decreased by 50%

Developer Comments: The healing boost from Ana’s Biotic Grenade was providing too much healing, especially when used on targets with large health pools.

 

In the new update, The Biotic Grenade boost heal on allies is reduced by 50%. It will definitely lower the rate of healing for tanks and make them much more susceptible to incoming damage. While this does not necessarily mean Ana will be out of the meta, it definitely makes her much less viable

D.Va

 

D’Va receives significant changes to her Armor and HP which will make her much less viable than it is right now. Currently D’Va is a very strong counter to Reaper and can single handedly shut down reaper.

D.Va’s mech has the average health and greatest armor of any hero, having 200 health and 400 armor. The suit is tied with Roadhog for the highest “hit point” value in the game, with both heroes having a total value of 600. However, if this were to include D.Va herself (who has 150 health when she ejects), then she actually has the highest value in the game with a total of 750 “hit points”.

Is important to note that D’va has the highest armor amongst almost all heroes. Her 400 starting armor is quite high compared to the norm which might be at 200. Whenever armor takes damage, it reduces the damage by half, but not by more than 5 damage per individual hit. This makes D’va much more tanky than just her HP. The reduced damage makes tank damaging heroes such as Reaper useless against her.

New Update

In the new update (PTR) her health is doubled to 400. But her armor is significantly reduced from 400 to 200. While overall this means her HP still remains the same, it causes a significant difference in the way she takes damage.
In addition to these changes, her Fusion Cannons are also changed. The Bullet damage is decreased by 33%. The number of bullets has been increased by 3 to compensate for the reduced damage.

  • Health increased from 200 to 400
  • Armor decreased from 400 to 200
  • Fusion Cannons
    • Bullet damage decreased from 3 to 2
    • Number of bullets per shot has been increased from 8 to 11

 D.Va’s armor often made her feel like she had no weaknesses, even against heroes that are often effective against bigger targets (like Reaper). The changes to her Fusion Cannons will result in a small overall decrease in damage, but they should feel more consistent now.

There are a few other updates to the UI and certain bug fixes. You can view the entire changelog on PlayOverwatch.com