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Overwatch: New PTR includes hero backstories and major Lucio changes

Overwatch PTR Lucio.jpg

This past week we touched on the changes headed to Overwatch in the new few months. Jeff Kaplan hosted an AMA on Reddit where he answered some of the most pressing issues and even some personal questions. Well, it seems that these changes that he touched on came sooner than we thought they would as the major Lucio balance tweaks have already arrived in the PTR, along with one of the most requested features, hero backstories. 

The patch notes reveal that each hero will now have a backstory included into their gallery, as well as a little information on their skins and how they all contribute to their character story. Lucio has also been reworked in a major way, with some buffs and nerfs implemented across all his abilities. Wall ride speed has increased, and his range of fire too, while the radius of his "pump it up" song as been decreased quite substantially. Take a look at the full patch notes below.


  • Details about each hero’s unique backstory, along with information about some of their lore-inspired skins, have been added to the Hero Gallery

Competitive Play

  • A tracking system has been added to Assault and Assault/Escort Maps that will allow us to break ties based on the progress that was made toward capturing the objective.

Developer Comments: To mitigate draws in Competitive Play, we're implementing a system that tracks each team's progress on the objective. This will work similarly to the system that's already in place for Escort and Assault/Escort maps, which grants a win to the team that pushes the payload the furthest. Now, even if neither team successfully captures the objective, a winner can be determined based on which team captured the largest portion.

For testing purposes, the Competitive Play map rotation will be limited to Eichenwalde and Hanamura.

Custom Games and Game Browser

  • Custom Game settings can now be saved as a preset from the game’s details page (Access by right-clicking on the map image from the Create Game page or right-clicking a game name from inside the Game Browser)


  • A new route has been added to Eichenwalde that connects the attacking team's spawn area to the capture point.

Hero Updates


  • Sonic Amplifier: Projectile speed increased from 40 to 50 | Alternate fire now considers verticle orientation when knocking targets back
  • Crossfade: Song's are-of'affect raduis decreased from 30 meters to 10 meters | A temporary in-game visual has been added to illustrate this radius (only visible to Lucio and his teammates)
  • Heal Song: Healing per second has been increased by 50% (also applied to Lucio's Amp it Up ability)
  • Sound Barrier: Radius decreased from 30 to 20 meters
  • Wall Ride: Movement speed increased by 30% when wall riding | Lucio now receives a burst of speed when leaping off a wall

Developer Comments: Lucio has often felt like a must-pick due to his raw healing output and the versatility of providing a speed bonus to your entire team. The goal of these changes is to keep those elements feeling strong, but making them harder to apply to everyone on your team at all times. The end result is that he should feel stronger with teams that he can stay close to but not as strong when on teams with heroes that are often spread out (such as Pharah, Widow, Genji, etc). Much of Lucio’s character power was tied up in his large passive auras, which caused other elements of his kit to be weakened over time in an attempt to balance him. Now that his auras are more focused it will allow them to be much stronger and allow Lucio to be more active in his role.

Along with these changes, there were also a few bug fixes like the brightness of Bastion's Golden Gun has been decreased, as well as Ana's cocking of her gun after a grenade throw. All these changes can be found on the forum.

What do you think of the changes to Lucio's abilities? Let us know in the comments below. 

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