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The Overwatch combat medic Baptiste is now live

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The latest patch to Overwatch heralds the arrival of the combat medic Baptiste, who comes to the fight with a big gun, some sweet footwear, and a unique array of abilities that enable him to protect and heal allies from a distance. 

Baptiste's Biotic Launcher fires a three-round burst with "significant damage output," while the alt-fire mode launches grenades that will heal allied players. His Regenerative Burst ability will heal himself and nearby teammates over time, while the Immortality Field will keep allies from succumbing to the icy finger of death. Exo Boots enable Baptiste to clear obstacles that would be insurmountable to other players, and his ultimate, Amplification Matrix, doubles the damage and healing effects of friendly projectiles.

The patch also makes a number of balance updates to the game. Damage taken by armor from damage-over-time effects has been adjusted to be "more consistent and predictable," and damage boosting effects will be applied when projectiles are fired instead of when they strike an enemy, meaning that the hero who fired it doesn't have to be boosted when it strikes in order for the effect to apply. There are also new audio effects that will make it easier to tell when hits are being buffed or nullified. 

The patch also makes a number of character-specific tweaks—Pharah's rocket launcher minimum explosion damage has been increased from 16.25 to 20, for instance, while Orisa's movement speed penalty while firing has been cut from 50 percent to 30, that sort of thing—and all sorts of bug fixes as well. The full rundown of changes is available at playoverwatch.com

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.