Overwatch Update Out Now, Makes Major Hanzo Changes; Patch Notes Released
Hanzo loses Scatter Arrow but gains Storm Arrows and Lunge, among other adjustments.
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A new Overwatch update is out now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One, and it presents some significant changes for the game. Blizzard has not just introduced the new map, Rialto, but it's also released significant balance updates for several character--with the biggest of the bunch being the long-awaited revamp of Hanzo.
Blizzard has been working on an update for Hanzo for some time. As detailed in the full patch notes, this finally implements the changes that have been tested on the PTR recently. He loses his Scatter Arrow ability, which has long been a frustrating component of his kit for enemies. In its place, he gets Storm Arrows, which lets him rapidly fire as many as six arrows. Each of these does less damage than a standard arrow, but they're each fired at max power.
Another new ability for Hanzo is Lunge. By pressing jump while he's in mid-air, he's able to leap horizontally. Additionally, his default attack gets a tweak, with his arrows moving more quickly. Sonic Arrow, which is used to highlight the location of enemies near its landing spot, has been adjusted to be used more often but last for a shorter duration. Its cooldown is now 12 seconds (down from 20), its duration is six seconds (down from 10), and its radius is seven meters (down from 10).
"The goal of these Hanzo changes is to allow him to have new options and maintain his high damage output, while removing the frustration of fighting against the old Scatter Arrow," Blizzard explained. "Hanzo is now much more mobile with his new Lunge ability, and with the combination of the bow projectile speed increase and the new Storm Arrows ability he can now deal his high damage more consistently than ever before."
Other hero updates are less impactful but still noteworthy. The projectile size of Junkrat's Frag Launcher is now smaller, and his RIP-Tire is slightly slower. Lucio's Wall Ride should generally be more reliable and now even lets him go around corners without leaving the wall. His Soundwave ability also doesn't consume ammo and can be activated while he's reloading.
Tracer's Pulse Bomb loses a chunk of its damage, a change which is meant to make it less deadly to tanks (while still allowing it to kill other characters). The hitbox size of Genji's deflect is now smaller, and the cone angle of Brigitte's Shield Bash has been reduced.
The remainder of the patch deals primarily with fixing some lingering bugs and adding some options for custom games. Those include the ability to disable Mercy's passive, Regeneration.