'Overwatch' Updates Bring Junkertown Map, Deathmatch Game Modes

Welcome to Junkertown! Shortly after its revelation at Gamescom, the latest Overwatch map has been released to the Public Test Region (PTR) where Blizzard tests changes to the game before releasing them to the public. The company also brought new deathmatch modes and balance changes to the base game, so no matter what region you play in, the popular team-based shooter has something new for you this week.

Like we said earlier this month, Junkertown is a new escort map that requires you to push a payload through Junkrat and Roadhog's home town.  The map features many flanking routes and combines some open areas (like one right at the start) with tighter spaces. It's definitely going to take a little while to learn, so heading in to the PTR is the best way to give yourself a leg up over the competition for the map's official debut.

Speaking of official debuts: Just a few weeks after going live on the PTR, Overwatch's new deathmatch modes are now available in all regions. The first mode is a free-for-all in which eight players compete to rack up 20 kills before anyone else. The second mode has two teams of four players race to the 30-kill mark. The former takes place on a new Chateau Guillard map, the second on modified versions of existing maps.

Changes to several heroes also made their debut. Junkrat's been given an extra concussion mine, Roadhog can now walk as he takes a breather, and Orisa's received a larger shield and improved projectile speed. Other changes, like the nerf to D.va's defense matrix and the Mercy rework announced last week, are still being tested in the PTR before they make their official debut and shake up the game's meta.

All of this adds up to a busy week for Overwatch. The second annual Summer Games came to a close, and so did Season 5 of the game's competitive mode. Season 6 will start on August 31—which means there was just a three-day gap in between seasons—and it will bring with it many changes to Overwatch's skill ratings and matchmaking. It will also feature a reduced lifespan of two months instead of the usual three.

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TypeOnline, FPS
PlatformsPC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
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Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.