Blizzard just dropped its latest update for Overwatch, and it includes several changes made to a wide range of heroes. Unlike some other recent patches, this aims to readjust the state of the game rather than completely rework the existing meta. As a result, many of the listed changes aren’t overly substantial, but the same can’t be said of the Widowmaker nerfs.
For the first time in the history of Overwatch, Widowmaker’s sniper, the Widow’s Kiss, has damage falloff. Specifically, when firing at targets from 60-85 meters away, scoped shots will deal up to 50% less damage. Also, her scoped shots now consume five ammo instead of three, but her overall magazine has been increased from 30 to 35.
The impact of the Widowmaker nerfs
Previously, a fully charged headshot with the Widow’s Kiss would always deal exactly 300 damage. However, with a 50% damage falloff applied, this number drops to just 150. This means at maximum range Widowmaker will only be capable of one-shotting Tracer and an unmeched D.Va.
Despite this, most sightlines will remain unaffected. Eighty-five meters is a huge distance in Overwatch terms and will only ever come into play on maps such as Junkertown, Rialto, and Havana. If this change works out on Experimental, you can expect it to come to live servers in a week or two.
The other DPS changes
Regarding the other DPS characters, Blizzard has made tweaks to Ashe, Junkrat, Mccree, Pharah, and Symmetra. Effectively, these are the main DPS, other than Sombra, that regularly see playtime in the Overwatch League. Similarly to Widowmaker, Ashe has her effective ammo reserves cut down to make Ashe players choose their shots more carefully. Also, her aim down sights fire has had its damage decreased by 5 across the board.
Mccree sees his Peacekeeper’s recovery time increased up to 500ms from 420ms. This decreases his potential fire rate by just under 20%. Equally, Junkrat and Symmetra have both received direct damage nerfs. Junkrat’s Frag Launcher grenades will now deal 10 less damage on a direct impact. Meanwhile, Symmetra’s secondary fire has had it max damage reduced from 140 to 120.
Finally, the high flying Pharah has had her primary fire slowed down. Previously, she could fire a shot every 750 ms. This has been increased to 850ms. I’d imagine these changes have been made to balance the fact that Widowmaker’s will now have a far harder time shooting her out of the sky at extreme ranges.
Blizzard is still trying to make Moira fun
Blizzard has also nerfed or reworked several members in both the tank and support categories. Most notably, it would appear Jeff Kaplan hasn’t given up on trying to make Moira fun quite yet. After her fade cleanse changes failed to make their way onto live servers, these changes instead look to make players be more conservative with their healing.
The overtime healing effect of her primary heal has been decreased by two seconds but the healing per second has been increased by five. Also, the rate at which Moira consumes healing resources has been increased by 27%. All this coupled with her now less forgiving primary attack are likely an attempt by Blizzard to make her both more fun and raise her potential skill ceiling.
The other major change to the support category sees Baptiste receive changes similar to those Brigitte saw earlier this month. His area of effect Regenerative Burst now only outputs 75 healing, down 50%, but heals himself twice as much as before. His primary heal has also been made a little less reliable, with his Biotic Launchers ammo capacity being dropped from 12 to 10.
As for tanks, only Orisa and Zarya have received changes. Orisa has had her Halt changes from last patch partially reverted. The Halt projectile will now travel slightly slower but has an increased pull range of 5m. Zarya just saw her secondary fire slightly tweaked as it will now consume 25 ammo a shot, up from just 20.
If you’re interested in more details about the Widowmaker nerfs or other hero changes, be sure to check out the full patch notes.