Home » OVERWATCH » Meta-Changing Patch Currently in Overwatch PTR

The 3-3 meta—also known as GOATS—has been near-tyrannical in Overwatch, leading many to complain about the game’s increasing predictability. However, the patch notes released on February 28 introduce a variety of changes that seem specifically targeted at breaking the 3-3 meta game.

These new changes come right on the heels of the massive February 26 patch, which introduced hero number 30, Baptiste, in addition to altering the stats of fourteen additional heroes. The patch even went so far as to affect how in-game mechanics such as armor, beam damage, and knockbacks work. The vast majority of the changes were moderate buffs, and the few minimal nerfs were well-balanced by buffs to other hero stats. McCree’s Fan the Hammer damage was reduced, for example, but the damage he can deal during his ultimate increased dramatically.

Related: Is Baptiste a Bit Too Powerful for Overwatch?

There’s some argument about what changes Baptiste himself will introduce to the meta game. Some argue that his abilities, particularly his Immortality Field, will make 3-3’s ridiculously sustainable health pool all the more powerful. But adding Baptiste to 3-3 means sacrificing the abilities and ultimate of another support hero, and the synergy between Zenyatta-Lucio-Brigitte in particular is vitally important to 3-3 as a working composition.

Baptiste’s official character art.

The newest patch now headed for PTR nerfs several heroes that are indispensable to the 3-3 meta. Zarya’s alternative fire damage radius has been scaled back, and Lucio’s speed boosts have taken a hit, as well. The damage on Zenyatta’s primary fire is getting a moderate boost, but the the effect of his Orb of Discord has dropped from 30% to 25%. The 3-3 meta relies heavily on Lucio’s speed, on Zenyatta’s ability to chew through enemy health bars, and on Zarya’s ability to passively grind her ult charge by launching projectiles into oncoming enemies.

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In addition to nerfing heroes indispensable to 3-3, the newest patches also creates buffs that will make dispatching the 3-3 composition that much easier. McCree’s is one such change that seems specifically targeted at breaking the 3-3 meta. After locking onto targets for 2.5 seconds, McCree can now pour out a massive 550 damage per second. While this won’t affect targets like DPS and support heroes, for whom “It’s high noon” usually means death anyway, it means that tanks now have to be much more wary of being caught in McCree’s Deadeye. The impact damage of Junkrat’s frag launcher has been increased from 40 to 60—a whopping 20 point increase that makes him a much more viable tank-buster or support-dispatcher to counter the current meta.

new Overwatch patch

The GOATS iteration of 3-3 utilizes Moira instead of Brigitte.

Long story short—this is a huge, ambitious new patch, and it’s responding directly to the changing nature of Overwatch and its current meta game. For many, these changes can’t come soon enough, especially since each match in this season of Overwatch League has come down to which team plays 3-3 more effectively. Watching the same team composition go up against the same team composition over and over again gets old pretty quickly, and it looks like Jeff Kaplan and his team are angling to change that.

For now, the new Overwatch patch remains in PTR, so it will be at least a few weeks before we get to see how it affects the game in live play, and longer still before it makes any impact in Overwatch League play.

Did your main take a buff or a nerf in these new patches? Be sure to let us know in the comments!


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