Yesterday Blizzard released new content into the Overwatch PTR – a new map called Horizon Lunar Colony, and a fun new Arcade mode called Low Gravity. The update now live brings Winston’s lunar home to the map rotation and several significant changes to Reaper, Roadhog and McCree, as well as unlocking two skins previously exclusive to Heroes of the Storm. (not going to touch that one right now – people are pretty upset) But the best part is a new walking-on-the-moon style low gravity game mode, which lets almost every hero get major air time.
So far played exclusivity on the new Lunar map, the mode reduces the amount of world gravity for everything – players and objects. Taking a simple jump finds you airborne for up to a several seconds. You can literally hurdle over obstacles including ice walls, shields and buildings. Depending upon the mobility of the character results will vary, Phara effortlessly flies, never needing to land, and even Torb archives flight.
This new game mode will have you completely rethinking your strat and your hero’s role. Tanks and shields seem to be far less effective when anyone can do an aerial attack. The prevalence of flight also makes every outdoor map a sniper map. With so many heroes airborne there are more sniping positions and opportunities. Initially I thought McCree would have good versatility in this mode but turns out he can’t do his dash-roll in flight, and his flash bang is less successful when there are less people on the ground. Not all Overwatch heroes are limited, Soldier can “sprint” in mid-air and Mei can go Cryo mid-flight.
Mechanics of the point-control game are mostly the same. Heroes can control the point even while not having their feet on the ground. The penalty of dying is less in the low gravity mode because you can be back into the action faster. With Pharah, for example, one leap and your extreme height can get you a visual on the point. BTW, she can also easily travel to all the invisible bounds of each map. Giving you a unique eagle’s perspective of the map. Handy for better understand the layout for your more earth bound matches.
Blizzard has not announced the release date for the new map, and modes. Blizzard typically tests updates on the PTR for a few weeks before pushing them live to the PC, PlayStation and Xbox.