Have you ever heard the expression "feels like Christmas came earlier this year"? Today may be the time you actually understand the meaning behind those words. Patch 1.12 for "Overwatch" is finally live and the package includes a humongous number of updates and changes. We waited eagerly for the lights to turn green. As soon as the update could be downloaded, we delved in and tried it out for you.

Blizzard releases small hotfixes and larger patches. 1.12 definitely belongs to the latter category. This update modifies in-game characters, influences the interface we all learned to love, and adds new skins.

A completely original map also has a place in this long list, but we'll talk about it in more detail later. Without further ado, then, let's see what patch 1.12 is all about

Behold Yet Another Attempt at Balancing Gameplay!

Aside from the Lunar Horizon environment, characters modifiers may just be the most awaited part of this update. Patch 1.12 is alll about attack power and health, with McCree, Reaper, and Roadhog receiving substantial bonuses. These new stats also change the ways each hero is played and may greatly impact your gameplay experience. In more detail, here's exactly what happened:

  • McCree's ultimate now takes a lot less to lock onto targets. The eternity that was 0.8 seconds before the game recognized an enemy has now been reduced to 0.2. That may not sound like much but, in the heat of a battle, those 0.6 seconds are going to be the difference between "High Noon" and a shameful early demise. As a result, McCree is now a much more dynamic character to play. The pistolero from Santa Fe feels faster, is more agile and becomes extremely useful to get rid of large groups of enemies. His damage output has also been increased. This amateur video - taken on the Public Test Realm - shows you the difference;

  • Reaper now transfers 20% of the damage he deals back to his HPs. This one actually sounded a bit unsettling to me, especially since my main's Mercy. Reaper was already an extremely powerful character and the patch risks turning him into an OP demigod. We haven't had the chance to see one of these guys taking down an entire team at the push of a button yet, but that will probably happen soon;
  • Roadhog went into surgery, but his gun was also made a tad less powerful. The happy-go-lucky swine still is - without risking to sound too insensitive - one of the largest characters "Overwatch" has to offer. Roadhog's head, in particular, made this moving mountain easy to take down from afar and hampered his abilities as a tank. Blizzard decided to reduce his cranial space by 20%. Not like the guy needed the additional room for a brain. Unhappy with the results, the development team also nerfed the iconic Scrap Gun. You may want to think twice before you pick him next time!

Patch 1.12 Aims at Running a Tight Ship and Keeping Her Steady

Bug-fixes are often ignored, but they are likely the most important part of every update.

Even the costliest of yachts will sink if you drill a few holes in it; a game works in a similar fashion. This is the reason why patch 1.12 for "Overwatch" comes dragging along a long list of solved problems.

Most of these were so insignificant that you probably didn't even notice them while playing. Yet they were there and probably bothered someone or made their "Overwatch" matches a bit worse.

It's great to see how Blizzard cares so much about even the smallest details.

The on fire meter was patched up, along with your first win while playing competitively being registered as a loss. None of that gibberish should ever show itself again. Issues with the custom game browser, arcade mode, text boxes, and a few general complaints were also addressed.

All seem to have been solved. If you want to know more about the work that went into it, we invite you to take a look at the official patch notes.

What's in Store For 'Overwatch' In the Near Future?

This question is inherently hard to answer. Considering how Blizzard specializes in long-lasting multiplayer experiences and how World of Warcraft is still alive, we'd say there's little to worry about. "Overwatch" is going to undergo several more updates, with which many more features will be added and stripped off. Ultimately, though, the main concept and experience are unlikely to change.

Patch 1.12 was clearly designed to increase this game's longevity and make it once again relevant within its own industry.

Whether the update managed to do that remains to be seen. Something involving D.Va and actress Charlet Chung is also in the making. We should be receiving more news about it this upcoming Friday.

For now, we'd invite you to go out, download the patch and play it. Test each change and new feature with your own eyes and hands! Make sure to switch from your usual character and try something new every now and again! Report what you think is broken or should be fixed. The guys at Blizzard will do the rest!