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As you've probably noticed by now, the latest patch comes with Junkrat, and Whitemane reworks, and here we have a post with developer insights and more information about some of the new talents, update goals, and more.
You can find a list of all changes in the official patch notes.
We’re reworking Junkrat and Whitemane to make them more dynamic and interesting to play. Here’s a preview of the changes you’ll see today when Whitemane’s judgment and Junkrat’s explosions hit the PTR!
The wildly destructive Jamison Fawkes (A.K.A. Junkrat) is one of the most popular Overwatch Heroes in the roster. While he is consistently represented in the meta, we feel like his talent diversity is less than ideal. This update is our opportunity to create more interactive and interesting talent and Heroic options while ensuring he remains the manic hyper-carry he’s always been. Our primary focus with these changes is to increase the power of his less popular build paths, remove unnecessary talents, and round out his other builds to be on par with Frag Launcher. Armed with some new toys, this deranged demolitionist is ready to rain havoc and bedlam on the battlefield!
At level 1, Blow 'Em Up! grants Junkrat a 25% damage increase to basic attacks and basic abilities for 6 seconds after hitting an enemy Hero with Concussion Mine or Steel Trap.
With Dirty Trickster, Junkrat drops Total Mayhem (Trait) grenades when Stunned, Rooted, or damaged by a Hero while below 50% Health.
Level 20's I Hate Waiting! offers Junkrat his Rocket Ride Mount with 150% increased Movement Speed and a higher cooldown in place of his standard Mount (Z)s.
Overall, we want to preserve Junkrat’s general gameplay identity while significantly increasing his talent choices and allowing for multiple build paths. We’ve focused on promoting a healthy balance of damage and carry capabilities for Junkrat while ensuring he’s not frustrating to play against. Junkrat’s new and reworked talents are more powerful as a whole, but to compensate for that increase, we’ve reduced the damage on his baseline Basic Attack and Frag Launcher. The changes we made to Steel Trap—by tuning and adjusting functionality on its associated talents—should make it a more attractive option. Finally, Rocket Ride’s marginal pick rate prompted us to up its steer speed and introduce a powerful level 20 upgrade.
Look Out For:
Junkrat has always been strong in the areas of zone control, wave clear, and mobility. This remains true following this update, but Junkrat also has some new tricks up his sleeve to lock Heroes down and cause general explosive chaos. Be sure to draft Junkrat on maps that have high-impact objectives or small corridors, as that’s where he can truly shine. His Concussion Mine and Steel Trap are hugely effective when used to engage or as a follow up to his own or his allies’ abilities.
Sally Whitemane, High Inquisitor of the Scarlet Crusade, is not one to take prisoners. Playing her should always feel relentless, whether you’re supporting your allies, or smiting the enemies of the Light. To make sure that’s the case, we’ve submitted her abilities to an interrogation.
Whitemane’s Mana tension (the amount of Mana she has access to versus the amount she needs to spend to meaningfully impact a match) was the primary area we found needed some reevaluation. In our PTR patch available on 9/16, we’re reducing the baseline Mana costs of Whitemane’s abilities. Since she can now use more abilities before running out of Mana, we’ve lowered her damage output to keep her power from spiraling out of control.
We’ve pushed her playstyle toward more interactivity by giving her multiple new Zeal-stacking talents, which heal her allies when Whitemane damages enemy Heroes. She’s also picked up a powerful global heal, and a new Quest talent that lets her Searing Lash ability provide permanent buffs. With her ardor renewed, Sally Whitemane is ready to purge the wicked from the Nexus once and for all!
With Inquisitor's Prayer (Quest), Searing Lash (E) Hero hits permanently increase Health and Mana.
Whitemane's Heroic Ability, Divine Reckoning (R2), now returns 25% of damage dealt to Heroes as Mana.
At level 20, Whitemane can activate Fanatical Power to cast a free and global Desperate Plea (Q) that grants a targeted ally permanent Zeal.
We’re hoping these changes will secure Whitemane a strong, healthy spot in the meta. After multiple rounds of feedback, tuning passes, and adjustments during our internal playtests, she’s sitting at a new level of power without having sacrificed her identity. That new power has been injected into her talent tree in the form of various Mana-return options, baseline Clemency, and a multitude of Basic Attack talents that reward players for having strong Zeal management. We hope you enjoy all the new synergies we’ve added to Whitemane’s talent tree!
Look Out For:
While the playstyle you’re accustomed to with Whitemane’s hasn’t fundamentally changed, you should nonetheless keep an eye out for some new synergies she has with aggressive or dive Heroes at the later levels. For example, Fanatical Power targeted at an ally Illidan, Diablo, or Valla can turn fights around in seconds due to the safety of its global range. As her enemy, if Whitemane appears vulnerable or out of Mana, be wary of how you engage. You may find yourself falling victim to her kiting, disabling, and burst healing potential . . . no matter how much you protest!
Join us in the Nexus to see both Junkrat and Whitemane in action today, and share your thoughts about these changes on the General Discussion forums!
This week's Hero rotation includes Alarak, Dehaka, Junkrat, Xul, and more.
The latest Heroes of the Storm patch is now available for playtesting until the week of September 23 and you can find the patch notes here. Heroic Deals will be up tomorrow.
Free-to-Play Hero Rotation: September 17, 2019
The player level remains unknown because Blizzard stopped updating the official forum post.
Alarak Alexstrasza Blaze Dehaka Gazlowe Johanna Junkrat Malfurion Probius Thrall Tychus Tyrande Valla Xul (Source)
New interaction lines between Qhira and Lady Vashj have been added in the latest PTR patch, suggesting that the Hero may be coming to the Nexus next, probably at around BlizzCon.
Redditor zad1111 made an interesting discovery shortly after the latest content update has hit Public Test Realms. Blizzard added new sound files to the game for the interaction between Qhira (the latest Hero) and Lady Vashj.
Vashj has been a long fan-favorite and there's a good chance the Hero will land in the Nexus soon as we're approaching BlizzCon. What do you think?
*Header image courtesy of 2d Artist Di Bakieva.
The Scarlet Heist content patch comes with Junkrat and Whitemane reworks. The update will go live next week.
The latest patch is available for playtesting until the week of September 23. Junkrat and Whitemane have been reworked (see patch notes below for more details). The Scarlet Heist is a new event with skins for Junkrat, Orphea, Sgt. Hammer, and Whitemane. Players will be able to acquire Scarlet Heist Loot Chests, which contain the new event items. Check out the official trailer here. Blizzard (Source)
Our next Heroes of the Storm patch has just hit the Public Test Realm and will be available for playtesting until the week of September 23rd. As always, if you encounter any bugs during your PTR play sessions, please stop by the PTR Bug Report forum to let us know about your experiences.
MacOS Update: With this patch, Heroes of the Storm will use Metal for rendering on macOS. This change ensures that Heroes is compatible with macOS Catalina and that it continues to be compatible with macOS for a long time to come. As a result, the minimum required version of macOS to run Heroes of the Storm is being increased to macOS 10.12 Sierra There are a few known issues in this release: Stuttering and stalling may be experienced early on in a game, particularly when the game first loads in and when the enemy team is first encountered. These stalls will get better over the course of a game and over the course of several games as macOS optimizes Heroes of the Storm behind the scenes Some outlines render black Some outlines and team color-based textures may render using colors from the color blind palette when color blind mode is disabled Free Loot Chest with 30 Day Boost Promotion (Twitch Promotion) Until October 22nd, receive a free Legendary Scarlet Heist Chest when you purchase a 30 day boost! New Event: The Scarlet Heist
New Tirisfal City. A town where every cop is on the take and every crook pays their dues. From her penthouse suite atop the Scarlet Monastery Casino, Whitemane runs the largest criminal empire this side of Tirisfal. There isn't a deal that gets made, a job that gets pulled, a scam that gets run without Whitemane giving her blessing and getting her cut. Until now.
Scarlet Heist Event Dates
The Scarlet Heist is the fall event for Heroes of the Storm running from the week of September 24 – December 3. You’ll be able to equip skins for Junkrat, Orphea, Sgt. Hammer, and Whitemane, and complete quests to unlock Portraits, Sprays, Emojis, and special Mounts. Scarlet Heist Loot Chests
During the Scarlet Heist event, all Loot Chests you earn through progression, Heroes Brawl, or by spending gold will be Scarlet Heist Loot Chests. (Except Hero-specific Chests, which will remain unchanged.) Most limited-time items shown above have a chance to drop from Scarlet Heist Loot Chests only. You can also score Items from previous years’ limited-time Fall of King's Crest event in Scarlet Heist Loot Chests! Scarlet Heist Quests
Orphea's plan is simple: she grabs the safe while Junkrat brings the firepower and Bama provides the getaway. Whitemane would never expect anyone to be bold (or stupid) enough to steal from the Scarlet Mafia. And that's the best thing that Orphea's crew has going for them. As you complete quests you will unlock rewards and if you can pull off the heist you’ll unlock the Royal Getaway Sidecar mount. Whitemane Rework
Weapon Damage from 60 to 55 Desperate Plea [Q] Range from 7.5 to 8 Mana cost from 30 to 45 Compounding Mana cost from 60 to 45 Inquisition [W] Damage from 350 to 329 Searing Lash [E] Range from 8.5 to 8 Damage from 82 to 75 Clemency  Now available baseline Now costs 75 Mana Talents
Level 1 Righteous Flame Changed Functionality: Increase the damage of Searing Lash by 25%. Increase this to 50% if the target is Stunned, Rooted, Silenced, or Slowed Pity the Frail Changed Functionality: Enemy Heroes hit by Searing Lash reduce the Cooldown of Inquisition by 1 second. All of your Healing is increased by 25% on targets below 25% Health [New Talent] - Inquisitor's Prayer Quest: Hit Heroes with Searing Lash Reward: Each Hero hit grants 3 permanent Health and 2 permanent Mana. Heroes hit with the second strike count as 2 hits Level 4 High Inquisitor Removed Unwavering Faith New Functionality: Gain 20% Basic Attack range. Each active Zeal buff increases your Basic Attack damage by 20% Martyrdom Moved from Level 1 Changed Functionality: Increase Desperate Prayer’s healing by 10%. Each active Zeal buff increases this by an additional 10% Indulgence New Functionality: Gain 5% Movement Speed. Each active Zeal buff increases this by an additional 5% Level 7 Intercession Cooldown from 60 to 45 seconds [New Talent] - Scarlet Wrath Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes increase the duration of Zeal by .75 seconds Level 10 Scarlet Aegis Cooldown from 60 to 90 seconds Divine Reckoning Cooldown from 100 to 75 seconds Added Functionality: Restore Mana equal to 25% of the damage dealt to Heroes Level 13 Self-Righteous Removed Guiding Light Removed Subjugation Moved from Level 20 Damage reduction from 75 to 50% Lashing Out Moved from Level 16 Removed Functionality: No longer grants bonus damage on the second strike of Searing Lash [New Talent]: Saintly Greatstafff Zeal heals for an additional 100% from Basic Attacks Level 16 Harsh Discipline Moved from Level 13 Shared Punishment Added Functionality: Enemies affected by Inquisition lose 10 Armor Level 20 Judgment Day Bonus damage from 30 to 50% Fanatical Power Moved from Level 7 New Functionality: Activate to grant target ally a permanent Zeal. Only one Hero can have this at a time (15 second CD) Junkrat Rework
Basic Attack damage reduced from 116 to 110 Frag Launcher [Q] Damage reduced from 128 to 118 Talents
Level 1 Put Some English On It [Q] Removed Bouncy Bouncy[Q] Removed Tricky Shuffles [Q] Moved from Level 7 Bonus Movement Speed reduced from 15% to 10% Additional functionality: While Frag Launcher has no charges left, Junkrat gains 15% bonus Basic Attack damage Extra-Wound Timers [Q] Additional Functionality: The final grenade from Frag Launcher deals 60% bonus damage [New Talent]: Blow 'Em Up! [W] Hitting an enemy hero with Concussion Mine or Steel Trap causes Junkrat to deal 25% more damage with Basic Attacks and Basic Abilities for 6 seconds Level 4 Bonzer Hits [W] Removed Chattering Teeth [E] Moved to Level 13 BOOM POW [W] Moved from Level 20 Cooldown reduction reduced from 12 to 8 seconds Taste For Explosions [Q] Damage scaling changed from .5 per stack to .2% Maximum bonus damage changed from 100 to 40% Level 7 Bogged Down [W] Moved from Level 13 Slow amount reduced from 60% to 40% Slow Duration increased from 2 to 2.5 seconds Big As [E] Additional Functionality: Enemy Heroes who are hit by Steel Trap have their Armor lowered by 10 to 3.5 seconds Sticky Wicket [E] New Functionality: Enemy Heroes who are hit by Steel Trap are Silenced for 2.5 seconds [New Talent]: Dirty Trickster [Trait] Increase the explosion radius of Total Mayhem by 20%. When Junkrat is Stunned, Rooted, or damaged by an enemy Hero while below 50% Health, he uses Total Mayhem, dropping 5 Grenades at his feet, dealing damage to nearby enemies;12-second CD Level 10 RIP-Tire [R1] Cooldown reduced from 80 seconds to 75 seconds Rocket Ride [R2] Movement Speed increased from 5.5 to 6 Impact damage increased from 750 to 815 Level 13 Gotta Trap 'Em All! Moved to Level 4 No longer has a quest component to gain benefits Maximum number of Traps reduced from 3 to 2 Cooldown reduction increased from 3 to 5 seconds [New Talent]: Bombs Away [Q] Increase Junkrat’s Basic Attack range by 1. Frag Launcher grenades fired within .5 seconds of using a Basic Attack deal 25% bonus damage Level 20 Extra Oomph [R1] Cooldown reduction increased from 20 to 25 seconds Puckish Scamp [R2] New Functionality: Junkrat gains the ability to use RIP-Tire. Each time he uses his Heroic, it swaps to the alternate ability. Each Heroic has its own separate cooldown [New Talent]: I Hate Waiting! [Z] Junkrat always rides his Rocket mount, which moves at an additional 150% Movement Speed, but his mount cooldown is increased to 12 seconds Kel'Thuzad
Level 10 Shadow Fissure [R2] Hitting an enemy Hero no longer instantly resets the cooldown of Shadow Fissure, but instead sets it to 1.5 seconds Collection
Many seasonal items have made their way back into the collection and will be available for crafting and in Loot Chests for a limited time!
For the duration of the Scarlet Heist event, the Legendary Scarlet Heist loot chest will be available for purchase for 12,000 gold! (Limit 1 per region per account)
New Bundles (Limited Time Only!)
Scarlet Heist Bundle Showstopper Whitemane Bundle Big Shot Sgt. Hammer Bundle Wiseguy Junkrat Bundle Baby-Face Orphea Bundle Raccoon Bundle Getaway Sidecar Bundle Fall of King’s Crest Bundle New Skins (Limited Time Only!)
Showstopper Whitemane Noir Showstopper Whitemane Idol Showstopper Whitemane Diamond Dust Showstopper Whitemane Silver Screen Showstopper Whitemane Big Shot Sgt. Hammer Cabbie Big Shot Sgt. Hammer Hot Shot Sgt. Hammer Untouchable Big Shot Sgt. Hammer Dragster Big Shot Sgt. Hammer Wiseguy Junkrat Slick Wiseguy Junkrat Henchman Wiseguy Junkrat High Roller Wiseguy Junkrat Prankster Wiseguy Junkrat Baby-Face Orphea Honey Baby-Face Orphea Lovely Baby-Face Orphea Sly Baby-Face Orphea Devious Baby-Face Orphea New Mounts (Limited Time Only!)
Timmy Raccon Bobby Raccoon Frankie Raccoon Joey Raccoon Escobar Racoon Tommy Raccoon Getaway Sidecar Classic Getaway Sidecar Blazing Getaway Sidecar Smooth Getaway Sidecar Swell Getaway Sidecar Revered Tombstone Venomous Tombstone New Content (Limited Time Only!)
Several new sprays and portraits have also been added to the game Bug Fixes
Fixed an issue where purchasing items in the Store can cause the Blizzard Checkout screen to display as black Fixed an issue where Loot Chests can fail to open when you use Loot Chest award notification on end of game screen to navigate to Loot screen Removed Minion flag from Mercenaries and Monsters [Score Screen Updates]: Self Healing/Shielding score is no longer being added to Healing/Shielding score and will instead become its own score that replaces Damage Taken in the Tab Score Screen [Try Me Mode]: Cassia's Titan's Revenge armor will now fully reset when resetting Talents in Try Me Mode Abilities learned while the Hero is disabled due to crowd control effects will not be usable while the Hero is disabled by channeling or other Crowd Control effects Heroes, Abilities, & Talents
Leoric: Updated Wraith Walk’s Movement Speed to correctly get up to a 50% bonus [Rework] Junkrat: Concussion Mines will now always knock back all enemy types and Junkrat when they explode Stitches: Shambling Horror's movement speed has been updated to match the new base Hero move speed Li Li: Blinding Wind can no longer target and blind Immune targets Artanis: Interupting Blade Dash before a second missle is launched no longer places in Artanis in unpathable terrain Azmodan: All Shall Burn no longer continues to cast on targets in Post-Death states Orphea: Orphea is now granted Mana when she uses Shadow Waltz Yrel: Yrel will now automatically mount after Hearthing back to base after using Bubble Hearth Yrel can no longer become temporarily stuck channeling a Basic Ability by using her remaining Mana on Ardent Defender Qhira: Updated No Sanctuary to include a 20% damage bonus to Blood Rage, Pulsing Pain, and Final Strike Grappling Hook chain will no longer sometimes remain after casting the hook against Terrain Swing Life Away no longer gives Spell Armor even if Revolving Sweep ends The Thirst no longer heals Qhira after Carnage has hit non-Heroic targets Qhira no longer pops at the end of her dance animation Junkrat and Whitemane have been reworked in the latest patch.
The Scarlet Heist arrives to Heroes of the Storm next week and to go along with it comes a brand new trailer showing off new skins for Junkrat, Orphea, Sgt. Hammer, and Whitemane.
Check out the official PTR Patch Notes!
New Tirisfal City. A town where every cop is on the take and every crook pays their dues. From her penthouse suite atop the Scarlet Monastery Casino, Whitemane runs the largest criminal empire this side of Tirisfal. There isn't a deal that gets made, a job that gets pulled, a scam that gets run without Whitemane giving her blessing and getting her cut. Until now. Sick of answering to the Scarlet Mafia, Orphea has recruited Junkrat and Bama "the Hammer" Kowalski into a gang of her own... one that doesn't owe anything to Whitemane. Just one problem: every criminal organization needs a slush fund. Thankfully, Orphea knows just where to get theirs. The Scarlet Monastery acquires mountains of moola on a nightly basis, coming from every patsy on the floor right into the casino's vault. It's the ultimate score, in more ways than one. Sure, the money is one thing... but getting away with robbing from Whitemane herself? Well, that'll just let everyone know that there's a new mob in town. Orphea's plan is simple: she grabs the safe while Junkrat brings the firepower and Bama provides the getaway. Whitemane would never expect anyone to be bold (or stupid) enough to steal from the Scarlet Mafia. And that's the best thing that Orphea's crew has going for them. Make no mistake, it's gonna be a huge risk. They'll be sleeping with the fishes if they get caught. But if there's one thing this town's taught Orphea, if you want to win, you gotta roll the dice.