Overwatch's New Skins And Lunar New Year 2019 Update Now Available
Time to pig out.
Overwatch has kicked off its latest event, the annual Lunar New Year celebration that pays homage to Chinese culture. The "Year of the Pig" will last through February 8, and Blizzard has been slowly showing off the new skins we'll see starting with this event.
The new skins include several Chinese generals from the Han dynasty, like Lu Bu Reaper, Huang Zhong Hanzo, Guan Yu Reinhardt, and Zhang Fei Torbjorn. Other Legendaries include Zhuge Liang Zenyatta and Hong Gildong Tracer, and two Epic skins are included too: Sanye Orisa and General Brigitte. The event also includes the return of skins from Lunar New Years' past, and other cosmetic items like emotes. Check out our gallery of all the skins.
Last year's Lunar New Year event was the Year of the Dog. That update included several new skins along with a capture-the-flag mode, which returned for this year's event as well. This came along with balance changes for Brigitte, D. Va, and Reaper, along with other bug fixes detailed in the patch notes.
The biggest change comes to how armor works, since now it will reduce damage from 5 to 3. This will mostly impact characters who fire in bursts, like Soldier 76. Blizzard says armor was a little too strong previously, particularly among characters who healed often.
The patch also reduces the duration of Brigitte's rally to 30 seconds, to avoid a snowball effect wherein she would start building another Rally before opponents could deal with the first one. Similarly, D. Va's Defense Matrix has had its cooldown time increased from 1 to 2 second to give opponents a chance to respond. Finally, Reaper gets the lone buff of the balance patch with an increase to his life steal, from 30% to 50% of damage dealt.
"Reaper's passive enables him to play aggressively when near enemies. This change allows him to keep the pressure up while he's dishing damage to his enemies," the patch notes state. "The added life steal is particularly effective against tanks, as they tend to do less damage than other heroes, and also take more damage from his Hellfire Shotguns due to their larger hit volumes."
Blizzard has usually hosted several annual events for Overwatch, but has started to introduce smaller events as well. One recently focused on focused on Ana with an accompanying short story, and offered a special exclusive skin for her. Meanwhile, the big tentpole events like Winter Wonderland and now the Lunar New Year are still going strong.
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