The newest patch for Overwatch arrived this last week and with it an overhaul of my favorite character: Lucio. Along with some other changes to game mechanics and tweaks to a few maps, this patch was obviously aimed at polishing the competitive play and mixing up the meta. Before this patch Lucio was a must pick on every map with nearly every team comp, his ability to reach his entire team with a speed boost in key situations, combined with his sustainability, made him irreplaceable.
With the Overwatch patch 1.10 everything has changed for Lucio players. First the range of the Crossfade (heal/speedboost) has been reduced from 30m to 10m. This makes it nearly impossible to heal a Widow, Pharah or Genji while still being useful to your team. This is not an impossible task but leaves much more room for Pharmacy with an Ana or Zen to get a little more play in maps that benefit from more vertical team comps.
Along with the range changes there are some changes that make Lucio even more powerful in a traditional group push or dive comps. He received a massive 30% boost to his team healing, while losing 25% of his self healing in an effort to remove some of his solo sustainability, making him more dependent on his team and encouraging the use of his new Crossfade range.
While his personal sustainability may have been reduced his mobility and “Boop” got major upgrades. First the wall ride now gives you a significant speed boost while riding as well as one when you leave it, making your mobility and potential speed amazing! You can reach new heights and break neck speeds making you harder to hit than ever. The damage on his primary weapon was increased by 25% and the projectile speed was increased by 10, giving Lucio a much higher DPS potential. This combined with his knock back (Boop) finally taking into account vertical orientation, you finally feel a bit more valuable in a team fight.
Overall I am enjoying the changes to Lucio. They have forced me to branch out a bit more seriously into other healers while breathing new life into my favorite aspect of the game. The increased mobility makes him a blast to play (if you could imagine him getting anymore fun); really gives me that Jet Set Radio feel like never before! If you left Lucio for more exciting heroes or found yourself autolocking DPS I challenge you to give the new Lucio a shot. You may find yourself enjoying the support role more than you ever thought you could!