The Overwatch 2.61 update patch notes are full of changes and additions that are sure to please most people with a passing appreciation for the game. Not only does it add a whole new healer, Baptiste, who has a whole repertoire of interesting moves, but it also brings some heavy balance updates to most of the cast. Chances are that your most and least favorite hero got a change or two along with a couple tweaks that addresses the game as a whole. So what are those changes?
Overwatch 2.61 Update Patch Notes | New hero, Baptiste
Baptiste, the game’s 30th hero, has been finally added to the live servers for everyone to play. He has a decent three-shot burst rifle to take care of his foes and a biotic grenade launcher to take care of his allies. He is a healer after all.
The ex-Talon operative also has an Immortality Field, which keeps his teammates from going down within a certain radius. His Regenerative Burst is a lot like another certain sound-based hero’s healing radius, but is more meant to quickly patch up a few close friendlies. Baptiste can also jump higher than most heroes by crouching before jumping; a perfect complement to his healing grenades.
Although his ultimate doesn’t heal anyone, he lays down a square-shaped Amplification Matrix that doubles the healing and damage that goes through it, which is perfect for a quick heavy assault. Baptiste is a versatile healer that will hopefully give more people a reason to play that oft-neglected class. You can read more about him here.
Overwatch 2.61 Update Patch Notes | General changes
Before we examine the hero-specific changes, let’s look at the ones that affect the whole cast. Beam weapons, like Zarya’s primary fire, now do 20 percent more damage to armor. This was an odd side effect to armor as it put heroes with beam weapons at a bigger disadvantage. Damage over time effects, like Widowmaker’s Venom Mine, also are more damaging to armor.
Damage boosting is also most effective as the effect now kicks in when the projectile is fired, not when it hits the target. This change allows the hero shooting to get the benefits of extra damage without having to wait until the projectile hits its target. This is especially helpful to Pharah, as Mercy and Pharah combos are quite common.
Speaking of flying heroes, flying heroes are now more effected by boops. This means that Lúcio’s boop can throw a flying D.Va off course, which didn’t used to be the case. Knockbacks will feel similar no matter how the enemy was moving beforehand.
And while not as big as the other changes, a new sound effect now plays when a damaged-boosted shot hits a target and when a shot hits a target but it doesn’t do damage. While the former can be applied to a few existing heroes, both are small quality of life changes made to accommodate Baptiste since his Amplification Matrix increases damage and his Immortality Field can keep some heroes from dying.
Overwatch 2.61 Update Patch Notes | Balance changes
Strap in, because this might be a bit long. It is all separated by hero so you can zoom in on any specific character to see the many changes littered throughout the Overwatch 2.61 update patch notes.
Ana’s Nano Boost only heals 250 instead of 300 so larger heroes don’t benefit more than most of the cast.
Doomfist’s Rising Uppercut and Seismic Slam have a six-second cooldown instead of seven seconds. While it sounds small, he was the victim of recent nerfs that made him a lot less effective.
Hanzo’s Sonic Arrow now has a nine-meter radius instead of seven because of how it would “feel ineffective in some areas” in some of the denser maps.
Lúcio’s boop now counts as offensive assist. This means that if he boops someone into their death, he will get a small assist in the kill feed. His Speed It Up boost now only makes the team go 50 percent faster (down from 70) and his regular speed mode only makes teammates go 20 percent faster (down from 30). However, his Wall Ride speed boost has been increased from 20 percent to 40 percent. Basically, Blizzard wants to nerf moves that affect the whole team while buffing the hero that yields such widespread effects.
McCree’s Fan the Hammer damage was decreased from 55 to 50 but his ultimate, Deadeye, has increased from 275 to 550 after he locks on to his targets for 2.5 seconds. Armor isn’t as effective now, which explains the nerf, but the buff is to help him kill tankier targets faster.
Mei’s primary slushy fire has been increased from 45 to 55 damage per second but her wall’s health has been decreased from 500 to 400. Blizzard wanted her freeze and icicle combos to be more deadly but also wanted less waiting around for the wall to go away on its own.
Moira is now a more effective healer as her heal over time duration has increased from three to four seconds and her total healing has increased from 50 to 65. This just makes her a more effective healer.
Junkrat, while his damage has stayed the same, now has a more expensive ultimate. His signature RIP Tire now cost has increased by 10 percent.
Orisa now moves 20 percent faster while firing. Previously, she faced a 50 percent movement reduction. Now it is 30 percent so she can help push forward more effectively.
Pharah has been nerfed back to her original state in a previous patch as she does a minimum damage of 20 (it was 16.25).
Reaper is being nerfed a bit but is still in a decent position. His self healing shots now heal 40 percent of the damage done to the opponents instead of 50. This was in response to the incredible surge in health he’d get when attacking enemies. It should be more manageable now.
Soldier 76 also does slightly more damage as his Pulse Rifle shots now to 20 damage instead of 19. He can also shoot .2 seconds faster after sprinting (.5 seconds to .3) and his ultimate can now target Junkrat’s RIP Tires and Baptiste’s Immortality Fields.
Sombra is now a more effective health pack hacker as her cooldown is halved when she hacks a health pack as opposed to an enemy. Hacking players was often the more effective choice and now the change in cooldown reflects that.
Symmetra’s Photon Projector damage now ramps up 20 percent faster. She can now melt targets a bit more quickly.
Torbjörn has more 50 more base armor but his Overload ability only gives him an extra 100 armor and not 150. He’s now a bit more survivable normally while also not nerfing his Overload ability.
Widowmakers can no longer just throw out her ultimate as it stops upon her death. Although players also now see enemy health bars when it is active.
Wrecking Ball’s Adaptive Shield no longer cancels his ball form. Not only is this a small quality of life change, but it also gives him a bit more survivability.
Zarya’s alternative fire’s explosion radius changed to two meters no matter what her energy level is.
And finally, Zenyatta’s regular orbs now do 48 damage (down from 46) but his Orb of Discord now makes targets take 25 percent more damage, not 30. Like the Lúcio changes, Blizzard has likely done this to tone down how effective heroes are that have abilities that affect the entire team.
Overwatch 2.61 Update Patch Notes | Patch notes
Here are the entire patch notes for the 2.61 update.
New Hero: Baptiste (Support)
Baptiste is a battle-hardened combat medic who wields an assortment of experimental devices and weaponry to keep allies alive and eliminate his enemies. Baptiste’s Biotic Launcher fires a three-round-burst that rewards accuracy and recoil control with significant damage output. His alternate fire lobs grenades that heal allies near the point of impact. With Regenerative Burst, Baptiste activates an intense surge that heals himself and nearby allies over time. When danger is near, Baptiste can toss out his Immortality Field to prevent allies from dying. Baptiste moves around the battlefield with Exo Boots, jumping over obstacles and clearing distances that would stop other heroes. Baptiste deploys his Amplification Matrix as his ultimate, which doubles the damage and healing effects of friendly projectiles.
Beam-type damage is now reduced by 20% when hitting armor
Developer Comments: The damage taken by armor from damage over time effects, such as Widowmaker’s Venom Mine, and beam weapons, like Symmetra’s Photon Projector, varied greatly. Now it will be more consistent and predictable. Clarification
Damage boost is now applied when a projectile is fired rather than when it hits a target
Knockback distance is now more consistent
Heroes that are flying can now be knocked back and slowed
A new sound plays when you land a hit while damage boosted
A new sound plays when you land a hit, but it doesn’t do any damage
Nano Boost – Heal reduced from 300 to 250
Fixed a bug where Ana’s clothes would clip into her hip pouch while doing the Yut Nori emote
Fixed a bug that prevented audio feedback from playing to indicate ammo was low on Ashe’s rifle if it had three or fewer bullets
Fixed a bug where Dynamite’s damage over time was not being damage boosted
Rising Uppercut – Cooldown reduced from 7 to 6 seconds
Seismic Slam – Cooldown reduced from 7 to 6 seconds
Fixed a bug where Seismic Slam didn’t pull in enemies as intended
Fixed a bug that made D.Va very difficult to knock back while she was firing her Fusion Cannons
Fixed a bug that made D.Va not get knocked back properly by Doomfist’s Rocket Punch
Fixed a bug that caused Genji’s Dragonblade to end before the deflect duration was complete
Fixed a bug where Genji would be knocked back unusually far when using Swift Strike to hit Doomfist’s Rocket Punch
Sonic Arrow – Detection radius increased from 7 to 9 meters
Frag Launcher – Impact damage increased from 40 to 50
RIP-Tire – Cost increased by 10%
Amp It Up – Speed Boost’s amplification reduced from 70% to 50%
Crossfade – Speed Boost’s effect reduced from 30% to 20%
Sonic Amplifier – Soundwave now counts towards Offensive Assists
Wall Ride – Speed buff increased from 20% to 40%
Fan the Hammer – Damage reduced from 55 to 50
Deadeye – Damage per second increased from 275 to 550 after locking onto targets for 1.5 seconds
Endothermic Blaster – Primary fire damage increased from 2.25 to 2.75 (45 to 55 damage per second)
Ice Wall – Health reduced from 500 to 400
Fixed a bug where Mercy’s left knee would bend unnaturally when stunned by McCree’s Flashbang
Biotic Grasp – Heal over time duration increased from 3 to 4 second. Total healing increased from 50 to 65
Fusion Driver – Movement speed penalty while firing reduced from 50% to 30%
Fixed a bug that made Orisa very difficult to knock back while she was firing her Fusion Driver
Fixed a bug that made Orisa not get knocked back properly by Doomfist’s Rocket Punch
Rocket Launcher- Minimum explosion damage increased from 16.25 to 20
The Reaping – Healing received from dealing damage reduced from 50% to 40%
Fixed a bug where a button on the shoulder of Reaper’s Lu Bu skin appeared to be floating
Fixed an issue that allowed Reinhardt’s Earthshatter to hit people further off the ground than intended in specific circumstances
Pulse Rifle – Damage increased from 19 to 20
Sprint – Delay before you can fire the weapon after using Sprint reduced from .5 to .3 seconds
Tactical Visor – Can target RIP-Tire and Immortality Field
Hack – Cooldown is reduced by half when hacking a health pack
Fixed a bug where Sombra’s stealth exiting sound effect wouldn’t play if an emote was used to exit stealth mode
Fixed a bug where Sombra couldn’t quick melee while using her Hack ability
Photon Projector – Primary Fire’s damage ramps up 20% faster
Fixed a bug where Symmetra would gain ultimate charge while casting Photon Barrier
Base health increased by 50 armor (250 maximum health)
Overload – Armor gain reduced from 150 to 100
Fixed a bug that prevented Torbjörn from using Molten Core in custom games if Ability 2 was disabled
Infra-Sight – Reveals enemy health bars. Now canceled on death
Fixed a bug that prevented Widowmaker’s Venom Mine from damaging a hero if they triggered it at the edge of its trigger radius
Adaptive Shield – No longer cancels Roll mode
Particle Cannon – Alternative Fire’s explosion radius changed to 2 meters, regardless of energy level
Orb of Destruction – Damage increased from 46 to 48
Orb of Discord – Effect reduced from 30% to 25%