The latest hero to join the Overwatch lineup received a nerf on the game’s test server this week. Wrecking Ball, or Hammond, was added to Overwatch’s PTR on June 28 after a week of hints and clues from Blizzard.
Well, it turns out that Hammond is a hamster who once lived on the moon, like Winston. The fearsome pipsqueak escaped the lunar colony and created a deadly mech unit from the remains of his escape ship/hamster ball.
But it would seem that this mech unit was a little too powerful, as it got nerfed earlier this week. Blizzard has reduced the movement speed for Hammond’s Grappling Claw ability from 22 meters per second to 20 meters per second.
The ability is a staple of the hamster’s movement kit and allows him to swing around the map and launch himself right into the battle. Before, Hammond was able to maneuver the map a little too quickly using his power boost from swinging. Now the speediness of the hamster ball should seem more reasonable.
Overwatch developer Geoff Goodman announced earlier this week that Sombra also saw some changes in the latest PTR patch. Late last month the hacker gained complete control over her stealth ability, meaning she could remain indefinitely invisible (as long as she was undetected and not firing, of course).
This huge buff is still in effect, but the development team is still making some tweaks to Sombra’s abilities in search of the right balance. Here’s a look at some of the changes.
- Detection radius reverted from four to two
- Interact button required to destroy the translocator, but players no longer have to be looking at it
- Lowered enemy sound cue for the translocator location
- EMP works on Wrecking Ball’s Minefield, disabling mines for 10 seconds
- Hacking now interrupts reloading
While these changes definitely mean a nerf on Sombra’s new infinite stealth mode, it does still mean she is boasting infinite stealth. According to Goodman, Blizzard is still “evaluating the changes overall,” but noted that Sombra likely won’t regain the ability to contest objectives while in stealth. She also won’t be getting her 75 percent speed boost back, which has been reduced to 50 percent. Goodman said that the hacker should feel stronger overall, despite being “slightly weaker” in certain areas.
Sombra’s rework shapes her into more of a scouting tool for her team and has the potential to shift the way Overwatch players approach the game. We still have no exact details on when the rework will make it to the live game, but we are likely weeks away.