Overwatch patch 1.7 is now available in the PTR, bringing Roadhog nerfs, multi emotes and more to Blizzard's FPS. It's bringing the tank meta down, taking aim at D.Va, Roadhog and Ana specifically. Meanwhile, Sombra gets a small buff, and there's a number of quality of life features introduced. Read on for more.
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Overwatch Patch 1.7 Release Date
You're probably wondering when you'll get to play it outside of the PTR - we don't know yet. However, in the past we've seen, roughly, one large patch at the end of each month. Expect it Tuesday January 31, or one week either side of that. For now, you can play it by changing your region to the test realm in the Battle.net client.
Overwatch Patch 1.7 Hero Balance Changes
Ana - nerfed
- Biotic Grenade
- Healing boost on allies has been decreased by 50%
- Duration decreased to 4 seconds from 5.
Developer Comments: "The healing boost from Ana’s Biotic Grenade was providing too much healing, especially when used on targets with large health pools."
Ana was as much a problem part of the Tank meta as the bulky ones themselves, hence her being taken down a notch.
D.Va - nerfed
- Health increased to 400 from 200
- Armor decreased to 200 from 400
- Fusion Cannons
- Bullet damage decreased to 2 from 3
- Number of bullets per shot has been increased to 11 from 8
Developer Comments: "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."
Geoff Goodman provided some further comments on D.Va's changes in response to a feedback thread. He noted that it was unlikely they would give her more armour.
Roadhog - nerfed
- 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
- Hooked targets are now slowed heavily while they are stunned, even if they are in the air. This means if someone is strafe jumping away from you and you land a hook, they are a lot less likely to slide out of line on sight, breaking the hook.
- Fixed a bug that could allow you to hook someone and pull them behind you if you spun around before the hook landed.
Developer Comments: "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."
The above three changes are targeting the tank meta that has develped in pro and high level play over the past few months. Blizzard are paying particular attention to how Roadhog feels to play so he's not totally useless post-patch.
Sombra - buffed
- The time it takes to hack a target has been decreased to 0.8 seconds from 1.
- Cooldown decreased to 8 seconds from 12.
Developer Comments: "Sombra often had difficulty hacking enemies, even when she surprised the target. This change should help her execute hacks more easily."
While Blizzard haven't said it, it seems like they're avoiding a straight damage buff to Sombra. As discussed in Overwatch This, this is a more interesting way to make the character useful. Plus, well, she does do mad damage if you can aim up-close.
Overwatch Patch 1.7 Emote Wheel
- Players can now equip up to 4 emotes, sprays, and voice lines from within the hero gallery.
- Voice line and emote submenus can be accessed using the left and right mouse buttons from within the Communication wheel.
- Players can now bind individual sprays, emotes, and voice lines to unique keys or mouse buttons.
This has been much-requested and long-promised, finally arriving with this patch. It's one of the less complicated things that Blizzard has said will be coming to Overwatch in the future, and indicates various teams have been freed up from must dos - competitive play, Arcade development, etc - to focus on this sort of QOL feature. That means that development can also begin on things like multi-POTG, so even if you're not that bothered about this, there is more goodness coming.
Overwatch Patch 1.7 UI Improvements
- The “Stay as Team” button lights up when anyone on your team clicks it
- A new button allows players to join team chat when connecting to a match.
- Kill Feed:
- Hero ability icons are now displayed
- Ultimate abilities are now indicated with an electric glow
- Headshot eliminations are now indicated with a red icon
Overwatch Patch 1.7 Bug Fixes
- Fixed a bug that allowed spectators to click the “Stay as Team” button after a game ended
- Fixed a bug that caused the “Stay as Team” button to overlap with the “Back” button on the Social menu
- Fixed a bug causing the “Mouse 4” button to execute the “Back” function during menu navigation, preventing it from being used for other features
- Fixed a bug preventing the Social menu from correctly displaying World of Warcraft zones that have a single quotation mark in the name
- Fixed a bug causing heroes to display a “T-pose” on the victory screen following a Mystery Heroes brawl
- Fixed a bug that prevented the Roadhog bot from grabbing enemies with his Chain Hook through a friendly Reinhardt’s Barrier Field
- Fixed a bug that allowed the Sombra bot to hack through barriers
- Fixed a bug that made the Torbjörn bot unresponsive after placing his turret
- Fixed a bug preventing players from receiving experience points when playing offseason games
- Fixed a bug that would cause the cup in Ana’s “Toast” victory pose to appear blurry on the right side of the screen
- Fixed a bug causing several visual effect issues on McCree’s “Hat Trick” emote
- Fixed a bug causing Mercy’s wings to be improperly placed on her Valkyrie and Sigrún skins
- Fixed a bug that sometimes prevented Symmetra’s Photon Barrier from playing a sound effect when destroyed
- Fixed a bug that sometimes prevented Widowmaker’s Venom Mine from attaching to walls
- Fixed a bug that prevented Zenyatta’s Nutcracker skin from glowing when his Transcendence ultimate ability was activated
- Fixed a bug that allowed Widowmaker to reach an unintended location on Eichenwalde
- Fixed a bug that allowed Widowmaker to reach unintended locations on Ecopoint: Antarctica
- Fixed a bug that allowed Sombra to reach unintended locations on Dorado
- Fixed a bug that allowed Sombra to reach unintended locations on Watchpoint: Gibraltar
- Fixed a bug on Oasis's garden tier where the border around the capture point inaccurately marked the bounds of the capture point
- Fixed an issue causing texture fragmentation on the Practice Range
- Fixed a bug preventing some projectiles from destroying the piñatas on Dorado
- Fixed an issue preventing the glass railings on Oasis from being easily broken by a melee attack
That's the notes - so far. We'll update if Blizzard provide further changes, or see you next month for patch 1.8.