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Published on 2018-04-30 03:00 PM

Week 4 has always been the quiet week, the calm before the storm that is week 5 and the stage finals. No big ranking shake ups, no big upsets. The matches won or lost here determining who needs to win, and by how much, in order to grab a coveted Finals spot. With that being said, let's dive in.

Week 4 Day 1

Match of the Day


None

Today’s matches were hard to watch. There is no doubt that talent and heart is equally distributed across all the Overwatch League teams: from first to worst. But sometimes that talent manifests or it doesn’t, leading to the one-sided routs we saw today.

Shanghai went down 0-3 to the undefeated Boston before eeking out a hold on Route 66 to secure them a single map. Dallas similarly was only able to secure a single, final map against Florida.

The Los Angeles Valiant against the Houston Outlaws should have been the match of the day, but it wasn't (though it might have some consequences for Valiant down the line). As in the Boston vs. Shanghai and Florida vs. Dallas match, Los Angeles went down three straight maps before winning the Outlaws favored Junkertown 2-0. The loss wasn’t enough to topple the Valiant from their spot in the Stage 3 Finals running, but I have a feeling the loss will put their chances in jeopardy when they face Philadelphia and Boston next week.

Week 4 Day 2


Match of the Day

Los Angeles Gladiators vs. London Spitfire

The Spitfire were 2-4 and were looking to avenge their surprise Stage 2 loss to the Gladiators. The Gladiators lost both their games last week and were trying to stabilize the downward spiral in hopes of staying in the running for a playoff spot. The result: this match.

With Bridring still out with a sprained wrist, London looked to DPS player Hooreg to fill the star sniper’s spot. Problem is, he doesn’t gel too well with London’s top squad. He put up the damage aided by Profit, Gesture, and Fury but it just wasn’t enough to overcome sniper savant Surefour.

Week 4 Day 3


Match of the Day

Houston Outlaws vs. Los Angeles Gladiators

Don’t watch this match looking for fancy plays or impressive ultimate usage, watch this match for the strategy. This is just plain good Overwatch. These two teams, evenly matched in skill and standings, played a game that was less about flashy kills and more about observing, adapting, and evolving on the fly. That sounds boring if you like your Rip-Tire quad kills, but the same could be said about watching two teams with the same composition throw themselves at each other until one of them breaks.

Houston almost went home with a loss in map three if not for a very late offensive push on match point. From there they went on to win Route 66, their worst map, thanks in part to the Gladiators’ inability to check their corners for sneaky Tracers.


But surprise Pulse Bombs weren’t enough to carry the Outlaws to a win. They lost to the Gladiators in a very close map five.

Week 4 Day 4


Match of the Day

Philadelphia Fusion vs. Shanghai Dragons

The 0-26 Shanghai Dragons forced a tiebreaker against the almost Stage 2 champions the Philadelphia Fusion. Everyone predicted that if Shanghai were to get their first win with their new roster additions it’d be against either Florida or Dallas, teams in the same bottom quarter of the standings. But that win was very nearly against Philadelphia.

Why?


One day teams are going to fully respect the Dragons and they’re going to stop going into matches against them with a 4-0 expectation. The Dragons haven’t been 4-0’d in their last five games, and neither Boston nor Seoul beat them 4-0 when they played them earlier in the Stage. Taking a match to five maps is something Shanghai hasn’t done since Stage 1 (ironically against Philadelphia). They’re winning maps that favor other, better teams and while their offense can be disjointed, a consequence of their not-quite-there communication, their defense is truly impressive. The Fusion dashed Shanghai's hopes for a win this time, perhaps finally understanding the Dragons are not to be taken lightly.

Final Thoughts

Boston remains undefeated at the top of the Stage rankings, setting a League record for the most consecutive games won. Now, at the close of week 4, the Uprising has their sights on two more achievements: the first team with a perfect 10-0 stage record and a Stage Championship Title.

But New York is close behind them looking to snatch Boston’s top spot and with it, the right to choose their first round opponent in the Stage Finals. New York has a lighter schedule next week facing Dallas and Shanghai while Boston faces the two LAs, both of which have a good chance to spoil their perfect stage run. It should make for some great Overwatch.

Ash, the first of her name, keeper of Zenyatta lore, protector of Hanzo mains and Mother of Shanghai Dragons, is a content writer for the Overwatch section of MMO-C and Gamepedia.
by Published on 2018-04-24 07:12 PM

Overwatch League - Boston Uprising Dominates Stage 3
We've got some more Overwatch League updates this week!



Season 9 Competitive Play Ending April 27
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Hey everyone,
Season 9 of Competitive Play is coming to an end soon, so we wanted to lay out a few key dates and important pieces of information regarding the upcoming season roll.

DATE AND TIMES
Season 9 will officially end on Friday, April 27 at 5:00 p.m. PT (Saturday, April 28 at 00:00 UTC). Season 10 is currently scheduled to launch three days later on Monday, April 30 at 5:00 p.m. PT (Tuesday, May 1 at 00:00 UTC).
For time zone assistance, and to see when the season will roll in your region, visit thetimezoneconverter.com 72.

SEASON 9 REWARDS
If you completed your placement matches during Season 9, you will be eligible to receive a special spray and player icon. These will be unlocked automatically when you log into your account the first time after the season ends. If you are placed within the Top 500 players on your platform (and in your region) at the end of the season, you’ll receive an extra player icon and animated spray on top of the other seasonal rewards.

Aside from sprays and icons, you’ll also receive a number of Competitive Points based on the maximum skill rating you achieved during the season.
Here’s the Skill Rating (SR) to Competitive Point (CP) breakdown for Season 9:

SR 1-1499 (Bronze): 65 CP
SR 1500-1999 (Silver): 125 CP
SR 2000-2499 (Gold): 250 CP
SR 2500-2999 (Platinum): 500 CP
SR 3000-3499 (Diamond): 750 CP
SR 3500-3999 (Master): 1200 CP
SR 4000-5000 (Grandmaster): 1750 CP

THANKS FOR PLAYING!
Thank you for joining us for Season 9 of Competitive Play! Whether you placed in the Top 500 or just completed your placement matches, we’re glad you’re a part of our community and hope to see you in Season 10.
Until then, be sure to keep your eyes on playoverwatch.com 18, as well as our Twitter and Facebook pages for all the latest game news!

Overwatch Retribution Mural Timelapse
Artists created an Overwatch mural in Melbourne, Australia leading up to the release of Overwatch Retribution.

Published on 2018-04-23 03:00 PM

Gather your brooms because this is the week of the reverse sweep. It’s also the week where teams decided to test our patience and our nerves with some tense tiebreaker matches. Five games out of 12 this week went to a final map, giving us some of the best (and most stressful) Overwatch we’ve seen all Stage.

Week 3 Day 1


Match of the Day

Los Angeles Gladiators vs. Los Angeles Valiant

The Battle for Los Angeles has come to Stage 3 and this time, it’s personal. Player trades between the Gladiators and the Valiant saw Ted “Silkthread” Wang trading his wings for a shield and looking to enact a little good-natured revenge against his former teammates. Both hometown heroes have a win a piece in the series, but it’s the Valiant that prevailed this time thanks to some killer plays like this one.


But the Gladiators didn’t go down without a fight. Look at this play from Fissure "the most handsome, best main tank, greatest in the world" (his words not mine).


Who is better than Fissure? Nobody.

Week 3 Day 2


Match of the Day

Boston Uprising vs. London Spitfire

Boston’s on a meteoric rise up the Stage and playoff standings. They’re first in the Stage rankings, second overall, and a very likely candidate to win the Stage 3 Finals. London, meanwhile, is at an uncharacteristic 1-3, putting them near the bottom of the stage rankings and quite possibly out of the stage playoff race. A win here for the Spitfire would have restored some much-needed confidence and boosted them over other teams in the standings, putting them back in contention for a playoff berth.

These two teams are 1-1 against each other, but the last time these two teams faced each other, London shut out Boston 4-0. For the first half of this match, it looked like history was ready to repeat itself. But Boston came back with a blazing fast 2-0 sweep of Ilios.

Things looked grim for Boston on the next map, earning only one point on Junkertown. Only a full hold could keep them alive. So Boston, in their best imitation of the Los Angeles Gladiators, put their shields up, and held the line.

After that, it was Boston’s game to win. London is 1-7 on Oasis and aren't at their best on control maps in general. The Uprising finished the game with a 2-1 victory on Oasis, completing the reverse sweep to end all reverse sweeps.

Week 3 Day 3


Match of the Day

Boston Uprising vs. Seoul Dynasty

Boston is unstoppable and currently undefeated. Now, after this match, they have earned the distinction of being only the second team in the League to defeat every other team. After last week’s upset over the New York Excelsior, the Uprising’s schedule only got harder, pitting them against the Spitfire and the Dynasty in the same week, on consecutive days no less. (RIP Philadelphia Fusion, who had similar consecutive day bad luck. They had a less than 24 hours between their match against New York and their match against San Francisco — their fatigue was evident in their stunning 3-1 loss against the weaker but better prepared Shock.) Seoul, meanwhile, is still struggling to claw their way back into stage playoff contention, and looked to close out the week with a sorely needed second win.

Boston took Volskaya in grand fashion. Both teams were undefeated on this map, but through a combination of Mistakes on Genji and Striker on Tracer, the team held Seoul to a 2-1 victory. Then on Blizzardworld Seoul forced a draw, able to match but unable to overcome a dominant Boston.

Mistakes on Sombra shut Seoul down at critical moments with his EMP ultimate while his team, in perfect sync, collapsed on the crippled enemies, wiped them out, and went on to win the match.


Week 3 Day 4


Match of the Day

New York Excelsior vs. Los Angeles Gladiators

The Excelsior just like playing with our emotions. Earlier in the week, in a rematch of the Stage 2 finals against the Philadelphia Fusion, New York went down 0-2 at the half just like they had done during the finals. And, just like they did in the finals, they came back in a reverse sweep. This match they did it again, suffering through the first half 0-2 before waking up and rolling the Gladiators in the next three maps.

No one knows why New York has suddenly developed a fondness for map five. Maybe they like playing Oasis, or maybe they like giving us a show. Or perhaps in their marathon race to be the top team in the League at the end of the season, they’re finally showing some signs of fatigue.

Final Thoughts

The top four teams headed to the Stage 3 Finals right now are the Boston Uprising, the Los Angeles Valiant, the New York Excelsior, and the San Francisco Shock. The Shock pulled off some interesting upsets earlier in the Stage, beating the Gladiators and the Fusion, but next week their winning streak will undoubtedly be humbled by the Spitfire and the Excelsior. That leaves a huge opening that anyone could capitalize on as the next four teams have the same record and an extremely thin map differential between them.


You’ll want to pay attention to all these teams’ matches next week because every map they play will mater come the Stage playoffs.
But ultimately the team to watch out for, the team that will win or come exceedingly close to winning the Stage 3 Finals, is Boston. Boston’s ability to coordinate, communicate, and dive with laser accuracy is exactly why they are the team to beat this stage. It’s true all teams need some level of coordination to be successful, but a lot of times teams rely on hard carries from their star players. Architect and Sinatraa for the Shock, Sayaplayer for the Mayhem, Geguri and Ado for the Dragons.

They get the kills that win the matches but at the end of the day the team with the superior teamwork is the winning team. And no team in the League right now is better at working together, and better at winning, than Boston.

Ash, the first of her name, keeper of Zenyatta lore, protector of Hanzo mains and Mother of Shanghai Dragons, is a content writer for the Overwatch section of MMO-C and Gamepedia.
by Published on 2018-04-20 05:40 PM

Overwatch PTR - Hanzo Rework and More
Another Overwatch PTR build has been released!


Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
A new Overwatch patch is currently in development and now available for testing. To share your feedback or report and issue, please post in the PTR Feedback 323 or PTR Bug Report 144 forums.

Please note that the below patch notes only include changes currently available for testing on the PTR. While many of these changes will also be available on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in a future patch, the PTR is PC-only and therefore will only reflect changes coming specifically to that platform.

Patch Highlights
New Escort Map: Rialto
Rialto was home to Talon agent Antonio Bartalotti’s sprawling estate and the backdrop to the infamous “Venice Incident,” a turning point for Overwatch and Talon. The Italian government has taken great steps to preserve Venice, and the results are striking. Tourists visiting this picturesque town can sample the regional cuisine, enjoy a relaxing gondola ride, visit Galleria D’arte Omnica, or simply take in the sights with a stroll along the canal.

Hero Updates
Brigitte
Shield Bash
  • Cone angle reduced from 90 to 60

Developer Comments: When fighting against Brigitte, it often felt like Shield Bash was able to hit players who felt like they were out of its range and should have dodged it. On the flip side, when playing as Brigitte sometimes players would hit the wrong enemy in the middle of a fight. With the cone being reduced, the ability is more accurate to its visual representation.

Genji
Deflect
  • Hitbox size has been reduced

Developer Comments: The hitbox on Genji’s Deflect was big enough that it would sometimes reflect projectiles that were pretty far away from him. We’ve tightened up the hitbox, which should solve this problem while still fully protecting him from projectiles that would hit him from the front.

Hanzo
Storm Bow
  • Projectile speed increased from 85 to 100
Sonic Arrow
  • Cooldown decreased from 20 seconds to 12 seconds
  • Duration decreased from 10 seconds to 6 seconds
  • Radius decreased from 10 meters to 7 meters

New Abilities
Lunge
  • Press jump while in the air to leap horizontally
Storm Arrows
  • Replaces his existing Scatter Arrow ability
  • Hanzo can now rapidly fire up to 6 arrows that deal reduced damage but are always fired at full power

Developer Comments: The goal of these Hanzo changes is to allow him to have new options and maintain his high damage output, while removing the frustration of fighting against the old Scatter Arrow. Hanzo is now much more mobile with his new Lunge ability, and with the combination of the bow projectile speed increase and the new Storm Arrows ability he can now deal his high damage more consistently than ever before.

Junkrat
Frag Launcher
  • Projectile size decreased from 0.3 to 0.2
RIP-Tire
  • Tire movement speed decreased from 13 to 12

Developer Comments: These changes are aimed at lowering some of the most frustrating parts about playing against Junkrat. Decreasing the Frag Launcher’s projectile size means he will have to aim a bit more carefully to land powerful direct hits and slowing the RIP-Tire’s movement speed gives his opponents slightly more time to destroy it before it detonates.

Lúcio
Wall Ride
  • Wall riding is less likely to be interrupted along a single surface
  • Can now go around corners (both outside corners, and inside corners) without having to leave the wall
  • Can now land back on the same wall after leaping away, provided his leap takes him far enough away from the original jumping off point.
  • Wall leap boost decreased from 2.5 m/s to 2.0m/s
Soundwave
  • No longer consumes ammo

Developer Comments: Wall Ride has been significantly overhauled to allow it to function more smoothly across more areas of every map. Lúcio players should instantly notice a huge improvement in where and how Wall Ride can be used. This change is just part of the overall changes to wall riding. Now that you can ride on many more surfaces and boost/land on the same surface, we’re reducing the leap boost itself slightly. In addition, Sonic Amplifier’s Soundwave ability was unnecessarily controlled by both a cooldown and an ammo cost, so we’re removing the ammo cost.

Tracer
Pulse Bomb
  • Max damage decreased from 400 to 300

Developer Comments: Pulse Bomb was too good at killing tanks, who can be easy to stick due to their size. This damage reduction makes it less powerful as a tank-destroyer, while keeping it lethal against most other heroes.

Game Browser and Custom Games
General
  • Mercy’s Regeneration (passive ability) can now be turned off in Custom Game settings
  • Settings for Hanzo’s Lunge and Storm Arrow abilities can now be found in the Custom Game settings

Bug Fixes
General
  • Fixed a bug that caused the option “Invite to a Custom Game” to appear while in the Tutorial and Practice Range

A.I.
  • Fixed a bug that prevented training bots from returning to their original position and behavior after being hit with an ability (e.g. Lúcio’s Soundwave)
  • Fixed a bug that caused bots to use the wrong route when tracking down the player if their target jumped off a ledge
  • Fixed a bug that caused bots to get stuck on the siege tank in the StarCraft area of Blizzard World

Game Browser and Custom Game
  • Fixed a bug that caused custom game invites to persist on the invitee’s screen

Heroes
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Bastion’s Zwing Zwing Zwing voice line from playing if the Null Sector skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Brigitte from using abilities or Rocket Flail while her Repair Pack was in flight
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Genji’s melee attack from making sound effects
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Genji’s golden weapon variant from displaying its golden sheen when some skins were equipped
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Junkrat’s RIP-TIRE to be immune to the freeze effects of Mei’s Endothermic Blaster
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Lúcio to move around while caught in Junkrat’s Steel Trap
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Lúcio to travel straight up using Wall Ride
  • Fixed a bug that prevented crowd control abilities from affecting Resurrect (e.g. McCree’s Flashbang)
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Moira’s flask from displaying in her Erlenmeyer victory pose when an Overwatch League skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that caused Reaper’s Hellfire Shotguns to float when previewing his Dance emote in Hero Gallery
  • Fixed a bug that caused the camera to not focus correctly when viewing Roadhog’s Mug Shot victory pose
  • Fixed a bug that caused Roadhog’s Chain Hook to float during his Footsteps highlight intro
  • Fixed a bug that prevented the laser sight from Sombra’s Machine Pistol golden variant from tapering at its end if her Talon skin equipped
  • Fixed a bug that caused Widowaker’s HUD to disappear if she used Widow’s Kiss while looking through the scope
  • Fixed a bug that caused the logos on Symmetra’s Overwatch League skins to appear faded when viewed in the Hero Gallery
  • Fixed a bug that caused the logos on Torbjörn’s Overwatch League skins to appear faded when viewed in the Hero Gallery

Maps
  • Fixed a bug that caused bots to get stuck walking into the side of the Rikimaru Ramen Shop on Hanamura
  • Fixed a bug that allowed players to place turrets in unintended locations on Horizon Lunar Colony
  • Fixed a bug that allowed players to reach unintended locations in Horizon Lunar Colony
  • Fixed a bug that caused the pig head on the bike to float after the bike had been destroyed in Junkertown
  • Fixed a bug that allowed players to place turrets and Symmetra’s Teleporter in unintended locations in Junkertown

Overwatch League - KyKy & Rascal Released by Dallas Fuel
Some changes were made to the Dallas Fuel roster this week.


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