I said I’d have this done by Monday, but as I was writing this post, Monday became Tuesday, and then I realized they would have a new update out so I delayed posting. Sorry! Let’s dig in to Overwatch’s Lunar New Year Arcade mode: Capture The Rooster as well as the new character changes being tested in the PTR!
Capture the Rooster
Overwatch’s Capture the Rooster update has been one of the most popular Arcade/Brawl modes to come from the Overwatch team, but whether or not it was the most well-received is debatable. There are tons of blogs and comments on forums talking about this new Arcade mode and quite a few of the comments are negative—after playing fifteen to twenty rounds of CTF in Overwatch, I can see why.
Capture the Rooster is a little different than Capture the Flag in other FPS games, and there are many FPS players (with much more experience than I have) who have been talking about fixes that should be made to Overwatch’s version. While I think that Capture The Rooster is an interesting game mode, I definitely agree that it needs some changes.
Draws. Draws Everywhere.
A lot of average Overwatch players (like yours truly) were noticing that they either could not capture the enemy flag because of the two seconds it takes to snag it, or that, once they captured the flag one time, they could “turtle”—make their defenses so strong that the enemy would not be able to break through—and win the game. I saw many forum posts, blog posts, and friends saying that their games ended in draws. When they had finally broken through the enemy defenses to get the flag and then brought it back to their base, they either couldn’t set up defenses quickly enough or the enemy team would sneak into their base while they were fighting, pick up the flag while their own flag was taken, and the game would end in a draw.
New Developer Update
Fortunately and as usual, the Overwatch team has been listening to its player base. Today they added a new update to the PTR (Public Test Region) that added a TON of features/changes!
The Overwatch team has added a brand new feature called a Server Browser, which is “an extension of Overwatch’s Custom Game mode.” Basically, the Server Browser allows you to create your own custom game with your specific changes and share it with friends, invitees, or the world!
Capture the Flag is a playable mode in Custom Games!
You read that correctly—players can now choose Capture the Flag as a game mode in Custom, along with Skirmish, 1v1, 3v3, etc. The Overwatch team believes that players want the game mode. I definitely think that players want the game mode to work, so they’ve compromised by putting it in the PTR. They added new Capture the Flag versions of each King of the Hill game maps (Nepal, Lijiang, Ilios, and Oasis), so there are now 12 “new” maps to try out.
Personally I kind of wish they had made actually new maps for this, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and say they’re probably working on some more.
You are also able to change the settings for Capture the Flag mode, according to the new Developer Update video posted on Youtube earlier today. You can change the flag pick-up rate, change or nullify hero abilities, and do a ton of other cool stuff! I’ve been trying to log into the PTR to actually see these changes for myself, but I am caught in the constant struggle that is PTR.
Apparently, rather than a second gate coming down after the payload passes through the castle door (which I always thought was strange), rubble from the broken door will now partially block the entrance. I think I’ll like this change once I get to see it, because it doesn’t make offense quite as difficult inside of the castle and it makes the defense team have to work a little harder. We’ll see how much the balance really shifts when it hits Live!
Again, I still think this is the most important part of any update the team gives us!
- Nano Boost Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust Nano Boost’s targeting sensitivity
I think this change will be great for Ana players! Now they may not accidentally create a Boostio or a boosted Mercy (even though I love getting it) instead of a boosted Reinhardt! This setting can be changed in the controls menu.
- Sentry Mode
- Deploy time decreased to 1 second
- Bullet spread increased 50% and is always at max
- Magazine size increased to 300
- Headshots removed, no longer deals critical damage
- Recon Mode
- Bullet spread decreased 25%
- Magazine size increased to 25
- Bastion can now repair while moving
- Now bound to secondary fire
- No longer interrupted by taking damage
- Resource meter added that depletes while Bastion is repairing and recharges when not in use
- Tank Mode
- No longer grants bonus armor
- New Passive: Ironclad
- Bastion takes 35% less damage while in Sentry or Tank modes
Okay, so they pulled out a ton of Bastion changes. I think that most of them are pretty good; the bullet spread increase on Sentry mode was, I think, needed, and as a squishy main I think it’s helpful that headshots were removed. Unfortunately I think it will definitely make him less effective against tanks, but these changes may make him more flexible overall. I’m not sure how I feel about the Ironclad passive, though; will a Genji reflect be enough to kill him anymore? Can I shoot him from across the map with my tiny pistol and feel like I’m doing anything? Should I feel like I can do anything? These are all questions that will be answered soon!
- Defense Matrix
- Projectiles no longer need to travel a minimum distance before they can be blocked.
I am so excited for this change! Whenever I play D.Va (my first love), I attempt to shield allies from Roadhog’s hook shot, but they always died and I felt powerless. Now, that won’t be an issue anymore! I think this change is a good thing, because it will make Roadhog players hook a little more strategically in the future, or it will make them focus the D.Va down before they kill anyone with the hook shot.
- Mei can now be targeted by allies while in Cryo-Freeze
This change sounds weird and honestly I’m not sure how it could help Mei other than maybe getting her more heals while she’s in Cryo-Freeze? Getting boosted while in Cryo-Freeze? I’m really not sure.
- While performing a resurrection, Mercy now becomes temporarily invulnerable along with the allies being revived.
- Caduceus Staff
- Zenyatta can no longer be targeted while Transcendence is active.
- Guardian Angel Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust Guardian Angel’s targeting sensitivity
- Beam Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust targeting sensitivity on the staff’s beams
Holy shit, guys, I am SO PUMPED! Making Mercy invulnerable while she’s resurrecting will be a big change for Mercy players! Having a healer with a revived team is going to be a great thing—especially if you’re solo-healing. I am seriously so happy about this; now you may not need anyone to fly back to when you res! It’s going to be intense. I’m also really happy about the sensitivity changes, because there have been a few times where someone has been right in front of me at critical HP and the staff decides to heal the full HP hero right next to them. With the sensitivity changes, you should be able to just point at the person you want to heal, and heal them. Simple!
- Hack Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust the targeting sensitivity on Sombra’s Hack
Similarly to the Ana/Mercy changes, this will definitely be a good thing for Sombra players. They can hack the enemy instead of the health pack they’re near, or vice-versa.
- Rivet Gun
- Ammo is now loaded earlier in the reload animation
- Grappling Hook Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust Grappling Hook’s targeting sensitivity
Finally. So many Widowmaker players (including me; yes, I play Widow sometimes) have been talking about how ridiculous the grappling hook has been, and now Overwatch is providing an answer: if you don’t like it, change it yourself! Frankly I think this will be a great change, and I think it makes Widowmaker slightly more enjoyable to play if you aren’t hooking onto a wall rather than the ledge you were clearly looking at.
- Projected Barrier Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust Projected Barrier’s targeting sensitivity
This, just like the other sensitivity changes, will be really good for Zarya players who are attempting to shield an ally rushing in when another ally walks in front of them. I know that, on the rare occasion when I play Zarya, I’m constantly bubbling people I don’t mean to, and the person I meant to bubble dies because—surprise, surprise—they weren’t bubbled.
- Harmony Orb / Discord Orb Sensitivity
- Allows players to adjust Harmony Orb’s / Discord Orb’s targeting sensitivity
Just like the other sensitivity changes, this will be great for Zenyatta players, whether they’re trying to heal the team or deal damage to the enemy.
That’s all, folks!
I’m very, very excited about all of the changes coming out, and I can’t wait to try them! Hopefully one day I’ll get into the PTR, but until then, I’ll be in Live. See you again on Thursday for my next post! I’ll be discussing Doomfist and what I’d like or what I think would be interesting to see, unless some more news comes out!
As usual, feel free to comment on anything I’ve said and add your thoughts! I’d love to hear what you have to say!