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The 10 Biggest Changes Overwatch Has Made To Its Characters

When Overwatch launched in 2016, it immediately garnered
acclaim for how well-balanced and endlessly replayable it is. However, Blizzard
was not satisfied resting on its laurels. Over the course of Overwatch’s
existence, Blizzard has continually tweaked, tuned, and reworked various
aspects of its popular heroes.

These are the 10 biggest changes Blizzard has made to how Overwatch’s
characters play since launch.

10. McCree’s Eye Gets Deader
Just one year after the release of Overwatch, players were
adept at ducking behind cover once they heard the cowboy’s booming voice say,
“It’s high noon.” Blizzard made McCree’s ultimate viable once more by
significantly reducing the amount of time it takes to lock onto another hero.
It’s still pretty easy to dodge, but it’s just as easy to get caught off guard.

9. Roadhog’s Big Hook
In early 2017, Roadhog’s hook underwent a significant
change. Heralded as “Hook 2.0,” Roadhog was no longer able to pull opposing
heroes through walls and other solid barriers. This made hooks a lot fairer, though
you probably still say “Oh, c’mon!” every time you’re hooked from across the map.

8. Rest In Peace, Reaper Orbs
One of the biggest perks to playing as Reaper was that every
character that died left behind orbs that the ghastly shotgunner would absorb
and convert into health. In June 2017, however, the orbs were killed off in
favor of Reaper simply self-healing a percentage of damage dealt. The grave
cannot hold Reaper, but his orbs seem to be gone for good.

7. Junkrat Becomes Immune To His Own Bombs
In March 2017, the explosive-loving nut was given the green
light to get even more aggressive as his bombs could no longer hurt him. While
he’d later receive the ability to throw additional mines, being able to blast
explosives without fear of hurting yourself allowed Junkrat to truly get wild
with his strategy.

6. D.Va Gets A Missile Barrage
D.Va’s Meka received a big upgrade in August 2017 when
Blizzard installed a new missile system. While the upgrade came alongside a
decrease to her powerful defense matrix, many fans agree the new offensive
option was a fair trade. While just a few months later the missiles were
nerfed, they remain a viable option in nearly every combat scenario.

5. Torbjörn Gets Nerfed On Consoles
Shortly after Overwatch launched on consoles, it quickly
became apparent that Torbjorn was a major problem for gamepad players. Those
who weren’t playing on mouse and keyboard were being wiped out by well-placed
turrets, so Blizzard evened the odds by reducing the damage of the auto-aim sentry.

4. Hanzo’s Scatter Gives Way to a Storm
In April 2018, the arrow-based sniper was stripped of his
most polarizing ability: the scatter arrow. In place of the geometry-based attack,
Hanzo received storm arrow, an ability that lets him fire off arrows in rapid
succession. The attack was so powerful that Blizzard announced that it was
nerfing the ability just weeks after its implementation.

3. Mega Bastion Buff
February 2017 saw one of the biggest buffs any character has
ever received, as Bastion received a boost for each of his modes (recon,
sentry, and tank), as well as the ability to heal on the go. The changes were
met with significant outcry from the community, to the point that Blizzard
announced it was rolling back the changes within a week.

2. Symmetra’s Shields
When Overwatch launched, Symmetra was a substantially
different hero than she is today. Initially, she was able to give small shields
to individual heroes, and only possessed one ultimate. Starting in November
2016, Blizzard changed her by giving her photon projector attack much more
range and giving her the ability to bank all six sentry turret charges at once.
Blizzard also reworked her by replacing her individual shield ability with a
projected shield and granting her an additional ultimate option: a useful
shield generator.

Though Symmetra is certainly a viable option ever since
these changes went into effect, Blizzard has stated it plans to remove her
support designation in a future rework to become full-on defense. Only time
will tell how big these changes are.

1. Mercy Takes Flight
In 2017, the Overwatch team identified a fundamental problem
with Mercy’s original ultimate: the fact that it revived every fallen hero
within a certain range encouraged the healer to hide until her ultimate was
ready rather than getting into the middle of the action. In fall 2017, Blizzard
rolled out a rework that changed her ultimate to one that put her wings to good
use, allowing her to fly around, healing or damage boosting everyone in
proximity to her, while moving her revive a single-use ability on a cooldown.
The initial changes were so drastic that Mercy became the only viable solo
healer and completely turned the meta upside-down. Since its introduction,
Blizzard has scaled back some of Mercy’s powers, increasing the cooldown time
on her revive, reducing the speed of her Valkyrie ultimate, and eliminating
instant resurrections. Mercy is still one of the best healers on the roster,
but she’s much more balanced now.

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Garbage Pail Kids Gets A Mobile Card-Collecting RPG

Jago Studios announced today that it is working with The Topps Company to create a mobile game based on the Garbage Pail Kids. The game will be a card-collecting RPG featuring stickers and cards from the original ’80s run and the contemporary Garbage Pail Kids line. 

“Garbage Pail Kids are icons of the ‘80s and a mobile card battler featuring their freaky antics is a natural expansion for the infamous and beloved brand,” states Stuart Drexler, Jago Studios Founder and CEO. “We are thrilled to be working with Topps and look forward to bringing these memorable characters to life in a new way fans can interact with, directly on their mobile devices.” 

The mobile card-battle RPG is currently in private beta and is the debut product from Jago Studios. Jago was founded in 2017 by Drexler, with the exclusive rights to create card games using the Garbage Pail Kids license. 


“The game from Jago Studios will bring our Garbage Pail Kids to mobile devices around the world in a new way people haven’t had before,” states Ira Friedman, Vice President, Global Licensing at The Topps Company. “For fans from the ‘80s or the new generation just learning about the brand, virtually battling with GPK collectible cards offers a new mobile social experience that remains faithful to the irreverent heritage of Garbage Pail Kids.”


The Garbage Pail Kids will make its debut on mobile for free worldwide on the Google Play and App Store, but no release window has been announced yet. 


Our Take:
I am not sure exactly who this appeals to, Garbage Pail Kids always did its job of grossing me out when I was young. Many franchises have regained popularity through well-designed mobile games, and a card-based RPG seems like an intriguing fit for the license.  

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Unreal Gold Available Free For Its 20th Birthday

For it’s birthday, Unreal Gold and Epic are giving gifts to everyone in the form of a free copy of the game. The classic title turned 20 today and Epic tweeted out that it is giving away the game on and Steam free for a limited time, the game is available starting at 10am PST.  

Unreal is 20 years old! To celebrate, Steam & are releasing the Unreal Gold Edition, free for a limited time starting at 10am PST. See the story behind one the original songs and download the remix by Shivaxi at

— Epic Games (@EpicGames) May 22, 2018

Unreal released in 1998 to critical acclaim, and was developed by Epic Games (Epic Megagames and Digital Extremes at the time) the series spun off into Unreal Tournament and had a sequel with Unreal 2: The Awakening.


Our Take
Cheap as free is always a good thing, and it is nice of Epic to give players who missed out on the original release a look back at a piece of history.  It may not have aged well visually, as it was an early 3D first person shooter, but I am sure gaming history buffs and those who played it originally will get a kick out of it. 

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XSEED Announces Rhythm Game Gal Metal, Corpse Party 2, And Other Titles Coming West

XSEED, the American publishing branch of Marvelous Interactive, has announced that they will be bringing Switch heavy metal rhythm title Gal Metal to America, with Marvelous bringing the game to Europe. Titles such as Gungrave VR, Corpse Party 2, and Touhou: Scarlet Curiosity have also been confirmed by XSEED.

Gal Metal is a Switch motion-controlled rhythm game that uses joycons to help an all-female metal band through a series of vignettes that involves everything from putting on concerts to saving the town from aliens. The title has been highly requested for localization due to its unique and lighthearted style.

You can find a bit of footage of all the games in this sizzle reel below of XSEED localization announcements.

(Please visit the site to view this media)

You can find more information at XSEED’s blog post right here. It is likely that the publisher will have more on these titles at E3 next month.


Our Take
I’ve been excited for Gal Metal for a while, so I’m really glad to see it’s coming over. It has superficial similarities to Ouendan, which is one of my favorite games, so I’m hoping I’ll like this a ton, too.

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WWII Is The Next Setting For New Assassin’s Creed Comic

Titan Comics has revealed a new Assassin’s Creed comic series set in WWII called Assassin’s Creed: Conspiracies. This story will have two parts and standalone from other existing comics and games in the Ubisoft franchise. Conspiracies is the English translation of a series that has already been released in French by Les Deux Royaumes. This is the first time Assassin’s Creed has taken place in the second world war, and marks the most modern time in history featured in the series. Conspiracies follows new assassin Eddie Gorm, who is embroiled with the Templars as is standard fare for the franchise. Titan Comics has a description available:

Eddie Gorm is the boss of the docks and his only obsession is to run his small business. For this, the docker does not shrink from anything: diversion of military rations, traffic of alcohol and settling of account in the district of the East End. The war? The Nazis? This is the problem of others. Except that when death knocks on his door, he has no choice: the only man to save the world from atomic horror, Eddie finds himself propelled despite himself in the midst of a millennial conflict between the Order of Templars and the Brotherhood of Assassins.

Assassin’s Creed: Conspiracies will release in English on October 30, written by Guillaume Dorison and with art by Jean-Baptiste Hostache.


Our Take:
Hopefully this new comic will see success and push Ubisoft to look at WWII as a viable setting for future Assassin’s Creed titles. Ubisoft has plenty of options for modifying the game to fit the template of past releases, while also offering new experiences in a more modern setting. 

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Review | Earthlock (PS4)

I was recently given a chance to check out the PlayStation 4 version of Earthlock. I’d not played the original version, Earthlock: Festival of Magic, which released back in 2017, but have read other reviews of that title. Will this version have t…

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Overwatch To Get Lego Sets After Licensing Expo 2018 Announcement

Blizzard is never done promoting Overwatch in every conceivable way, and their latest move is to license Overwatch Lego sets.
Announced at the 2018 Licensing Expo, there are going to be multiple sets with varied pricing. No other info is available in…

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Dead Or Alive 5 Will Make An Appearance At This Year’s Evo

Koei Tecmo has announced the last entry in the Dead or Alive series, Dead or Alive 5: Last Round, will be at this year’s Evolution Championship Series (Evo) as a side tournament.

As part of a side tournament, the event won’t get much airtime on the show’s main stage, but fans and competitors in the series can sign up for the tournament, which is something the company has been “longing for over 10 years.”

The last time we heard about Dead or Alive, people thought it was dead. Koei Tecmo had held a “funeral” for Dead or Alive 5, which some misinterpreted as a being a funeral for the series as a whole. The company then clarified the topic and mentioned it was working on something new.

Our Take
With December’s announcement that the DOA teams are working on something new and a new side tournament popping up, it’s possible we’ll see the team announce something new at the tournament, whether it’s a new DOA, Ninja Gaiden, or possibly Nioh.

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Mike Bithell Announces Another Short-Form Game, Quarantine Circular

Following up on the success of Subsurface Circular, Bithell Games has announced a new title in the same vein, Quarantine Circular.

Mike Bithell, developer of games like Thomas Was Alone and the single-sitting title Subsurface Circular, has been hard at work to somewhat of a follow-up to the game. Thus arrives Quarantine Circular, establishing Circular as less of a series and more of an anthology of sci-fi games that can be completed in a few hours.

“Many, many, adults reached out to us about Subsurface Circular and expressed how happy they were that they could sit down and complete a game after a long day at work or in the few hours they had to themselves after putting the kids to bed,” Bithell said.

Quarantine Circular differs in that the game has multiple endings and multiple active characters, so your choices have a much greater influence on the narrative. The sci-fi text adventure nature of the game will be of particular interest to fans of Bithell’s style of writing, as well. The title is available right now on Steam for the same price as Subsurface Circular.

[Source: Mike Bithell Twitter]


Our Take
I quite like these single-session games and am interested in trying more, especially since Subsurface Circular was so intriguing.

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Submit Your Question For Our Days Gone Podcast Interview

As we come to the end of our month of coverage on Days Gone from Sony Bend, we wanted to open up the doors and give the community that’s been following along the chance to ask the game’s developers anything they want. In an upcoming episode of The Game Informer Show podcast (which you can subscribe to right here) we’ll be speaking with lead developers from the PlayStation 4 exclusive and asking them dozens and dozens of burning questions from the community. After seeing so much gameplay, we look forward to seeing what you all still want to know more about! 

Please leave a comment below with your question for the developers and we’ll do our best to get some answers.

Click on the banner below to see exclusive gameplay and learn more about Days Gone.

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