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Blizzard is tackling Overwatch’s crowd control abilities—with Doomfist and Brigitte facing imminent nerfs

The new Brigitte nerf could be uploaded as early as today.

Overwatch’s crowd control abilities are where the game’s players are channeling all their anger these days. The argument is that these “stun” abilities take away control from the player. Stun abilities are hard to counter—some say Brigitte’s are impossible to player against for certain heroes, like Tracer. Overwatch has a lot of crowd control abilities, like Ana’s sleep dart, Mei’s freeze ability, and Reinhardt’s ultimate. Brigitte’s ignited this community ire because of how frequently her stun ability comes up.

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Blizzard’s listening. Blizzard is “looking carefully” at the amount of crowd control abilities it has in game, Overwatch developer Geoff Goodman wrote on the Overwatch forum. Blizzard is looking into removing or reducing effectiveness of some of the stuns and knockbacks in the game, he said. And first, it’s Brigitte and Doomfist.

Related: Brigitte nerfed, Bastion buffed in new Overwatch PTR patch

Brigitte was nerfed last week on the Overwatch test server so that he Shield Bash ability would no longer travel  or stun targets through barriers. It’s a good change, but the new PTR patch, which should be uploaded as early as today, Goodman said, will go even further. The upcoming patch will reduce Shield Bash damage from 50 to five. The adjustment reduces her “total sun combo damage potential,” Goodman said, “while still allowing her Whip Shot and her basic melee attacks to retain their full strength.”

Her Inspire passive ability will have its cooldown reduced from 1.5 seconds to one second, and the duration increased from five seconds to six seconds. Total healing will be increased from 80 to 100. These are supposed to make up for the decreased damage from Shield Bash. Her healing output will increase, which Blizzard is hoping will keep her a viable pick despite the loss of her raw power.

  • Shield Bash
    • Damage reduced from 50 to 5
  • Inspire Passive
    • Cooldown reduced from 1.5s to 1.0s
    • Duration increased from 5s to 6s
    • Total healing increased from 80 to 100

Blizzard said the Doomfist changes are “all about trying to give his enemies more opportunities to effectively fight back.” Seismic Slam is changing, with victims of the ability no longer losing air control while being “pulled in.” Meteor Strike, Doomfist’s ultimate ability, will have its “inner ring damage radius” increased from 1.5 meters to two meters. Maximum damage from the outer ring will be decreased from 300 to 200, which is where damage fall-off happens.

“The Meteor Strike changes will make it harder to secure a ‘free’ kill on heroes without mobility such as Zenyatta or Ana, while still preserving its max potential damage when aimed well or when combined with other abilities such as Graviton Surge or Sleep Dart,” Goodman wrote.

  • Seismic Slam
    • Victims no longer lose air control while being pulled in.
  • Meteor Strike
    • Inner ring damage radius increased from 1.5m to 2.0m. This is the ring where Meteor Strike deals its full 300 damage.
    • Max damage outside of inner ring decreased from 300 to 200. This is the ring where damage falloff happens, which still reduces the damage down to 15 at max range.

Goodman said these changes are planned to hit the Overwatch test server today, but no exact time was given.

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Nicole Carpenter
Nicole Carpenter is a reporter for Dot Esports. She lives in Massachusetts with her cat, Puppy, and dog, Major. She's a Zenyatta main who'd rather be playing D.Va.