Overwatch’s latest PTR Patch Notes bringing changes to Reaper, Brigitte and D.Va

This week’s latest PTR Patch Notes have been announced for PC Overwatch players. In this latest patch, Blizzard are taking a long look at some of their flagship heroes as D.Va, Brigitte and Reaper are all facing changes. Good to note; the PTR changes will only be making changes for those Overwatch players that play on the PTR server. At the moment, these changes haven’t been guaranteed to make their way to Playstation 4 and Xbox One and may be subject to further changes before an official patch is released in the near future.

Hero Updates, D.Va facing a nerf

In the first PTR patch for the New Year, Overwatch developers are trying out some ambitious new tactics for balancing their game. Starting with the overall armor changes, Blizzard are making it easier for burst heroes to do more consistent damage to tanks that benefit from armor usage as well as spammed healing from their team.

With just a slight decrease to the armor stat, reducing damage reduction from -5 to -3, the window for burst damage to full tank heroes like Orisa and Reinhardt has opened up massively. While this seems like a benign change on paper, the implications for team fight focusing are huge with this change and burst DPS carries may come back into the meta in a huge way.

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@ Blizzard Entertainment

Heroes like Brigitte and D.Va also faced similar nerfs with Brigitte’s timer for her ultimate being capped at 30 seconds. D.Va’s cooldown for her defense matrix has also been increased by a full second, raising it from one to two. While this change seems small, the implications at the highest level of play are huge and this could open up D.Va to a lot more counter play and decrease her viability with certain team compositions.

Here comes the Reaper

The biggest change for this PTR Patch Note comes in the form of a Reaper buff that is increasing his passive lifesteal per auto attack from 30% to a whopping 50% per damage dealt. Essentially, Reaper can now lifesteal his way back from a McCree combination in one round of ammunition used.

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@ Blizzard Entertainment

At the highest level, this buff may not be the biggest boost to Reaper’s chances in competitive play. At lower elos, this new Reaper buff could wreak havoc in typical solo queue games for those tricky Reaper mains that can avoid damage and juggle aggro effectively with Reaper’s invulnerable spell. Even still, most pro Overwatch players believe that Reaper is in need of a complete rework in order to be used adequately in the scene.

This change may be a preposterous one from a statistical standpoint, but this may be just what Reaper mains need to make the hero feel viable again. Over the course of the next few days, Blizzard and their Overwatch PTR player base will be keeping track of his interactions mightily to ensure there’s nothing too insane going on before his update gets released on the live servers.