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Director’s Take: Welcoming Venture to Overwatch

Director’s Take: Welcoming Venture to Overwatch

Hello! It’s been a while since my last blog – but we’ve been hard at work! Let’s get right into it!

First off, I am thrilled that you have welcomed our newest hero, Venture, to the line-up. Venture’s ecstatic personality has charmed many of you, and you have already asked us so many questions about their backstory and personality. While I am unsure if they like to munch on rocks, they have drilled their way to being the top-picked hero in Quick Play this past weekend. We’ll be revealing more about Venture’s story and how they were developed shortly after Season 10 launches.

One of the biggest reasons so many of us instantly fell in love with Venture is the incredible voice talent of Valeria Rodriguez. We instantly knew they were a hit when we saw how much energy they could put into their voice and how they matched Venture’s personality perfectly. We are also thrilled that many of you have welcomed Valeria into our community.

Watching all of your reactions from the hero trial, we’re pretty happy with how Venture’s initial kit turned out.  The team was really happy with where Venture landed from a balance perspective during the trial, and it gave us confidence that they could release early into Competitive. We’re still deciding how early, but we feel they are in a suitable state (fun to play and fair to play against). While we don’t foresee needing to make many changes to their kit, we’re going to be listening closely to your thoughts on how Venture is doing in-game.

We’ve heard a lot of feedback that you like the tempo momentum Venture brings, being able to engage and disengage in fights.  But we’re looking at tweaking a few things for Venture at the start of Season 10. First, we’re slightly shifting some of their burst damage from their Drill Dash and Clobber (their melee) into damage over time. Next, we’re looking to reduce the vertical knockback of Tectonic Shock. Alongside those minor changes to Venture, we have a number of other hero changes coming in Season 10. Starting with our Tanks, we're upping the impact of Junker Queen's Carnage and Reinhardt's Earthshatter, so both abilities cut through better in the post-Season 9 world. The biggest Tank changes coming into Season 10 though are for Wrecking Ball. There are some great improvements to Wrecking Ball's Grappling Hook, including a reduced cooldown when not entering ramming speed and the ability to retract himself to where the Grapple is attached by holding down Primary Fire or Jump. There are also some changes to Adaptive Shields. Now after using Adaptive Shields, you can reactivate the ability to transfer up to 300 overhealth to nearby allies, capped at 75 overhealth per ally. This change should give Wrecking Ball more capability of protecting his allies and initiating engagements, defining features of what we want to see in Tanks.

For our Damage heroes, there will be some light adjustments for Sombra and Tracer. Sombra's Virus damage is taking a small hit on the damage over time amount (100 to 90) since the ability now has more upfront burst. Tracer has been quite strong since the Season 9 changes--she's one of the least touched heroes in OW's history, her kit flows spectacularly well! We are looking at some light changes for her right now, to make her slightly more punishable and require more precision.

Moving on to Support, we are looking at shifts in power for Moira, Lucio, and Illari. That means taking power from one part of their kit and funneling it into another - to somewhat maintain the overall power budget of the hero. Illari, for example, is receiving a slight nerf to her Primary Fire recovery time - 0.2 to 0.25 seconds - but giving more power back to her Secondary Fire heal and increase its HPS from 105 to 115. There are also some light buffs for Lifeweaver as we continue to evaluate where healthy power can be injected into his kit.

Many of you may have seen the recent Developer Update this month, and we’re just as excited as you are for those changes, including heroes no longer being locked behind the Battle Pass. We’re incredibly excited about Season 10, and we’ve got some more changes that will make Overwatch more fun for everyone next season and throughout the year.

We’ll have another Developer Update coming out tomorrow, which will touch on things we’re doing for Competitive and updates on what we’re doing to help make Overwatch a more safe and inclusive experience for everyone. So, I hope you’ll check it out. That’s all I got for now. We can’t wait to see all of you jump into Season 10, which begins April 16. Thanks, and let’s make a great game!

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