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Published: December 1, 2023

Written by: Stefan Velikov

  • Ult charge retaining when swapping heroes will be reduced from 25% to 15%
  • The newest hero, Mauga, will be introduced at the start of the season
  • Blizzard will enact harsher punishments on players who leave Quick Play early

Season 8 of Overwatch 2 is releasing in just a few days and the game’s devs released a blog outlining the slew of balance changes coming to many heroes.

Devs Announce Changes

With the end of the year approaching, Blizzard is preparing for one last big update to Overwatch 2 as Season 8 of the game starts. It will see the introduction of the newest hero, Mauga, as well as a slew of balance across all classes of heroes. The studio also plans to address the problem with early leavers, an issue many fans have been complaining about as it ruins Quick Play games.

In a developer blog post, Blizzard outlined the upcoming changes, starting with the amount of ult charge. “We’re making a general change to the amount of ult charge retained when swapping heroes, reducing it from 25% to 15%. We do like that this mechanic removes friction when swapping heroes, and think that it still should at 15%,” the post reads.

The post then harked back to the current season 7 and Roadhog’s rework. When he received it, he became quite a powerful hero and greatly shifted the meta. Some players even complained he became a bit too powerful, but according to Blizzard, he is just right. In fact, they think that Overwatch’s newest champion, Mauga, “has a lot of answers” to Roadhog and they are planning to see how that plays out before they make any balance adjustments to the latter. Mauga was revealed at BlizzCon 2023 along with a slew of other new things and will be arriving in Overwatch 2 next week.

More Tank Changes Incoming

On the topic of tanks, Blizzard’s developer post also revealed they will be buffing Doomfist, who will now be regenerating 75 health per second while in the air. The cost of the ultimate will be raised to compensate for the buff. It is hoped this will encourage players to use his ult not solely as “an escape”, as the devs were “disappointed” that fans were seemingly doing that too often.

Meanwhile, Winston’s kit has a disadvantage that’s “too extreme,” the devs say, so his Tesla Canon will now ignore the armor’s damage reduction. With Winston doing more damage, it will make aggressive play a lot more worth it.

Ramattrra will also be getting buffed as he is currently a bit easy to deal with. Starting next season, 100 of his health will be turned to armor, and the size and damage of his projectiles will also be increased.

DPS and Support Heroes Are Will Also Be Changed

Despite getting a rework, Sombra’s ultimate is still not “satisfying” to developers. This is why the lockout time of her EMP will be raised from 1.5 seconds to three seconds and the amount of damage it does will be reduced, steering her ultimate “more in line with her hero fantasy.”

Meanwhile, Soldier 76 will be receiving a crucial nerf. His kit makes him a rather well-rounded hero but the devs feel his self-heal has made him a bit too powerful. The cooldown is going to be increased from 15 to 18 seconds, ensuring players won’t be able to spam the ability too much.

Additionally, Tracer’s Pulse Pistols will be changed from 5.5 damage per shot to six like it was before. This will make her a bit more impactful.

Last, but not least, Brigitte will be getting a nerf as the devs think she is currently a bit oppressive. The damage on her Whip Shot is going to be reverted back to how it was before it was buffed. Baptiste is also getting nerfed, with his primary fire ammo going from 45 to 36.

More Punishment for Early Leavers

One ever-standing issue with Overwatch 2 is that many players leave Quick Play matches early, which leaves their teammates at a disadvantage. According to the devs, there are players that leave “over 90% of their matches,” so more harsh penalties will be implemented for them.

“There has been a bit of talk around that, specifically that some people view that mode as something that they would like the freedom to leave without worrying about those penalties,” the devs said. “Different people play Quick Play for different reasons. Some people see it as their try-hard version of the game, some view it as a way to experiment with heroes, and others use it as their casual, just-for-fun version of the game. It’s really difficult to have this part of the game be all things for all people.”

Overwatch 2’s Season 8 will start on Tuesday, December 5.

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