Overwatch’s latest live patch notes bring health changes, Mei buffs

Health tweaks and minor ability adjustments help balance a few important heroes.

Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Some weeks, Overwatch developers throw huge changes at players and see what happens. This week, they’re going for minor tweaks that should help balance out important heroes within the current meta.

Today’s live patch focuses on small increases or decreases in health pools as well as tweaks to certain abilities. 

“We’re making some max health adjustments in 25 HP increments to allow for more fine tuning of heroes’ power,” the developers said in the patch notes. Up until this patch, health changes had only ever been done in 50 HP increments. This was done to accurately measure how many “hits” a character could take, according to the developers.

All of the live changes were tested in last week’s Experimental Card and most of the proposed changes went through. The notable exception is the wild extension of Baptiste’s Amplification Matrix, which turned the “window” into more of a nine-meter-long glass door. That one might have gone back to the drawing board. 

Hero changes     


  • Biotic Launcher (Primary Fire, damage) recovery time reduced from 0.45 to 0.38 seconds. Damage reduced from 25 to 24. 
  • Biotic Launcher (Secondary Fire, healing) recovery increased from 0.8 to 0.9 seconds. Healing increased from 50 to 60. 

In previous live patches, Baptiste’s healing ability was greatly reduced, making him less of a must-pick hero for most team compositions. These changes will “make dealing damage quicker and landing a healing grenade more impactful,” according to the developers. 


  • Base health increased from 150 to 175.

After getting hit with the nerf stick several times over the past few months, the developers have taken a little pity on Brigitte and increased her base health. 


  • Base health increased from 200 to 225.
  • Peacekeeper reload time reduced from 1.5 to 1.2 seconds.

Everyone’s favorite cowboy is now a little bit harder to take down after a minor health buff. In an earlier patch, McCree’s firing rate was also made slower, which was controversial among many devotees of the Peacekeeper. To make up for that, the developers have reduced the reload time of his trusty revolver. 


  • Cryo-Freeze now restores 15 ammo per second. 
  • Ice Wall cooldown lowered from 13 to 12 seconds.

Ice Wall’s cooldown has been reverted from a previous nerf, but the biggest change is the addition of reload while in Cryo-Freeze, or “ice block” form. “Since we previously made Mei’s primary fire relatively more expensive, she spends more time out of ammo and this was particularly noticeable when unable to reload while in Cryo-Freeze,” the developers said about the new perk. The ability will now reload 15 ammo per second, giving Mei players a better chance to survive once they hop out of the ice. 


  • Base shields increased from 100 to 125. 

Instead of a health buff, Symmetra’s shields will be getting the reinforcement.  


  • Base health reduced from 200 to 175. 

Sniper duels will be a bit more interesting thanks to this health change. Widowmaker is now more susceptible to dives but will also be more likely to lose a sniper battle with Ashe or Hanzo, who both still have 200 health to work with. 

All of these changes are now live on all Overwatch platforms.