For those of you that haven't been paying attention to the Overwatch competitive scene these past few weeks, it is mostly dominated by 0-3-3 compositions. In other words, three tanks and three healers, all focused around Ana and her rapidly charging ultimate. Given how absurd things have become lately it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise to hear that Blizzard has decided to slightly nerf the charge speed on Ana's ultimate. However, if you're a fan of her playstyle I wouldn't worry too much about this nerf as you'll also be getting a range increase for the always useful Biotic Grenade.
On the other side of the spectrum we have Widowmaker and Junkrat, two heroes that occasionally make a blip in the competitive scene, but are mostly underplayed due to some severe weaknesses. In order to hopefully correct this Blizzard has decided to decrease the amount of time it takes for Widowmaker to scope in, while good ol' Trashmouse will now be able to start up his RIP-Tire almost twice as quickly, essentially removing his overly long period of complete vulnerability.
You can find the full patch notes by heading over to the Blizzard forums, but if you're just interested in all of the hero changes - here the list:
• Nano Boost
Ultimate cost has been increased by 20%
• Biotic Grenade
Radius has been increased from 3 to 4 meters
Developer Comments: So far, we haven't seen any indication that Ana is too strong overall, but her ultimate charges a little too fast, especially considering the impact it can have on a match. Also, her Biotic Grenades are getting a small boost to help her hit multiple targets.
• Widow's Kiss
Scoping-in animation time has been reduced from 0.5 to 0.3 seconds
Developer Comments: This change will help Widowmaker acquire new targets more quickly and speed up her reaction time in fast-paced situations.
Ability now activates more quickly
Developer Comments: Junkrat can be an extremely effective hero in the right hands, but RIP-Tire often felt underpowered when compared to his counterparts.
As you can see, these are all relatively small changes, which is something I consider to be an excellent change of pace. Making large, sweeping balance changes often leaves heroes overpowered (old McCree) or heavily underpowered (Soldier 76), so to see Blizzard take a step back and just slightly nudge heroes towards a more balanced state is a welcome thing indeed.
Will these changes make all three heroes perfectly balanced or not, that I don't know, but its a step in the right direction and it will certainly make for more enjoyable gameplay. Hopefully the rest of the roster will be getting these sort of changes as well, especially Symmetra, Soldier 76, Bastion, and other such heroes that just can't seem to find their place amidst heavy competition.
All of these changes are currently on the PTR (Public Test Realm), so feel free to stop by and see how they fare for yourself!