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After months of hints and teases, the new Overwatch update marks the release of the new-and-improved Symmetra. Along with the usual balance changes, the patch also contains the Horizon Lunar Colony rework and the new Looking for Group and Endorsement systems. The update is now live for all platforms.
This is the second time Symmetra has been reworked as she was overhauled in late 2016. She has been adjusted to be “more flexible and viable across more areas of the game,” according to the developer explanation on the patch notes. Her teleporter is now a regular ability that is meant to transport players (and some hostile enemy ultimates) around the battlefield, not just from the spawn room. Photon Barrier, her new ultimate, places a huge, flat shield on the environment with 5,000 health.
She now has only three sentry turrets which she can shoot out as projectiles. Her Photon Projector gun also no longer locks on, but has a longer reach and can recharge off barriers. The alternate fire now travels faster and explodes instead of passing through targets.
The Horizon Lunar Colony map has been changed around too. Aside from adding new art and textures, Blizzard has moved around some of the geometry to help out the defenders on Point A and attackers on Point B. Point B defenders can no longer easily duck back into the spawn room to regain health and the Point A attackers have fewer routes to attack the point.
The Endorsements and Looking for Group systems are meant to give players “more control over [their] gameplay experience” as Game Director Jeff Kaplan stated in their most recent Developer Update. Endorsements let players give kudos to others for exhibiting sportsmanship, being a good teammate, or for calling shots and those with consistently good standings will be periodically rewarded with an unknown gift. Looking for Group allows players to search through (and create) lobbies to find others that fits their specific parameters.
The new Overwatch update also brings balance changes. Doomfist now travels 50% faster during his ultimate and gains 35 shields (up from 30) for successful ability strikes. Orisa’s ultimate now costs 15% less charge and the range of McCree’s ultimate has been increased from 70 meters to 200.
However, this patch still doesn’t contain the next hero. Blizzard has teased this mysterious 28th hero a few times and, given their release schedule, is likely set to come out pretty soon after its unveiling. Blizzard showed off Ana in early July 2016 and she hit the live servers later that month. Doomfist followed a similar pattern last year as he was revealed and released in early July 2017.