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New PTR Patch Nerfs a Number of Heroes

Several heroes were hit by the nerf hammer in the latest PTR patch. Overall five heroes were weakened and one, D.Va, was buffed.

Baptiste

Immortality Field’s duration has been reduced from 8 seconds to 5, and its cooldown has been increased from 20 seconds to 25. Baptiste’s ultimate, Amplification Matrix, now costs 20% more.

Doomfist

Recovery time for Uppercut has increased from 0.2 seconds to 0.5 seconds. This means that Doomfist has to wait one half of a second before he can take another action instead of one-fifth of a second. It’s a small change, but Doomfist mains will notice the difference.

D.Va

D.Va’s Boosters have had their cooldown reduced from 5 seconds to 3, meaning she can buzz around the map much more and have an easier time getting to, and out of, danger.

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Hanzo

The projectile speed for Hanzo’s primary fire has been reduced from 125 to 110. This change returns the damage that Hanzo can dish out back to where it was before his rework in 2018.

Mei

Mei’s primary fire still slows enemies down, but not quite as much as on the live servers. It used to reduce target speed by 30%, up to 90%, but now that slowdown range is 20 to 70%. The slow effect doesn’t last as long either, now affecting the target for 1 second instead of 1.5 seconds.

Orisa

The damage reduction from Orisa’s Fortify has been reduced to 40%, down from 50%.

Full PTR Patch Notes

As is the way with every set of patch changes, the community cannot agree if individual changes are good or bad. The most controversial change based on our tweets about the changes is the one with D.Va and her Boosters: “Nerf Sigma, don’t buff D.Va,” “This is beyond broken,” and, “This doesn’t change anything.”

The change allows D.Va to be much more mobile and gives her a chance to tank from the midfield more successfully, which is said to by one of the developers work well with her current version of Defense Matrix. It’s much too early to tell if that will be the result once the patch goes live, or if double barrier will remain too strong to resist.

This PTR patch will be the patch that the Overwatch League plays in when games begin on February 8.

Custa Raises $10,000 for Aussie Firefighters

custa.jpg Photo by Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

Former LA Valiant player Custa raised $10,345.61 between two cooking streams to help firefighters in Australia combatting the largest outbreak of wildfires in recent history.

During his streams that had an initial goal of $5,000, Custa tried making apple pie, beef wellington, and a souffle, with various challenges at increased levels of donations.

I wasn’t able to watch the streams when they happened, but I’ve seen a few clips I loved, like when upon hitting $5,000 he ate a spoonful of vegemite (clip).

Houston Outlaws Annoy Neighbors by Existing

The team house for the Houston Outlaws is in a fairly well-to-do area near Houston called The Woodlands, and according to the Houston NBC affiliate KPRC, their neighbors are not pleased. It seems that the neighborhood has one of the worst things in all of humankind, a homeowners association, and other residents are doing what they can to get rid of the team.

Among the made-up claims, the neighbors are “concerned” that the team practicing and living there will mean an increase in traffic and noise while bringing down property values. Okay based on personal experience of having been to a team house, that last one may have some merit if the players and staff are not up on cleanliness.

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According to official documents, actual issues with the team house are: how much of the house is used to run a business, the number of employees in the house, “characteristics” of the company don’t hold neighborhood character, and concerns over parking. I can empathize with that because the area does have rules and the team probably knew that going in, but it still makes me roll my eyes.

The Outlaws have filed a request for an allowance with the homeowners association, and the association recommended a focus on strong enforcement of parking restrictions if the Outlaws are granted their request.

Okay, boomers.

OWL Talent Desk Makes Roster Changes

Over the holiday break, a few of the people in front of the camera for the past few years have decided to leave the Overwatch League. The timing coincides with their contracts ending at the end of 2019.

Chris Puckett announced on January 1 that he was leaving and said he looks forward to hosting other games.

Separately, both MonteCristo and DoA stated they were also going their own ways. Not long before that, DoA said his new contract was still being negotiated, but it seems that either that wasn’t working out or he just decided to go his own way. Monte, on the other hand, has been much more vocal, stating one reason he left was that he was displeased with how his ideas on improving the League were shut down.

Andrew Rush better known in the gaming community as ZP, will finally be making his debut in the Overwatch League as a caster. Both he and current caster Hex worked together previously, casting Overwatch games while the game was still in beta. RIP Monthly Melees. Hex later went on to cast for the OWL, but ZP wasn’t picked up at that time. He kept active by casting Contenders and the World Cup.

For the upcoming season, ZP will not be hosting with Hex, but will be working with Jake, who announced last year he would be switching from player to caster.

Bren and Sideshow are remaining with the League as well, but are moving from analysts to casting.

In mid-December, Custa announced he would be on the analyst desk for 2020.

OWL Team Color Changes

Three teams are changing their colors for the 2020 season.

San Francisco Shock

Last year’s champions are changing their primary color of orange to black. The orange is still there but is more of a highlight now, and the grey they changed from white last year is the new secondary color.

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LA Valiant

The Valiant are changing their colors again, this time changing their main green color to blue. This change was leaked by the League itself a while back, and the team made a joke about the rebranding.

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Florida Mayhem

Lastly, in a change that’s been requested since the reveal of the team back in 2017, the Florida Mayhem are dumping their McDonald’s motif (actually Misfits but whatever) and changing to the vice or “outrun” color set that Florida is known for.

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If you want skins of the old colors, you have until Wednesday, January 15, to grab them. (source)