Oasis has arrived on Overwatch's public test realm - that's the bit where new patches are deployed before they make it into the game proper. Oasis the game's new control point map, rather than Oasis the band fronted by the brothers Gallagher. They're not in the PTR. Well. They might be if they're into Blizzard FPSs I suppose, typing "Don't look back in anger LOL" into all chat.
Sez the patch notes:
Oasis is one of the world's most advanced cities, a shining jewel rising from the Arabian Desert. A monument to human ingenuity and invention, researchers and academics from around the region came together to found a city dedicated to scientific progress without restraints. The city and its inhabitants are governed by the Ministries, a collection of brilliant minds who possess many secrets that have attracted the interest of powerful organizations from around the world.
I feel like I've managed to suspend disbelief about all the Omnic business and the robo-PTSD and all of that kerfuffle, but apparently something in my brain has decided that this is the unbelievable bit - that academics have put aside their disagreements and projects for long enough to build an entire city instead of, say, arguing about access to resources and allocation of funding and billing in research papers and coming up with grant proposals and leaving notes on YOUR lab equipment.
BUT enough about that. What of the map? I figured I'd go have a poke around on the PTR and it's got a neat Islamic-influenced architectural style but with scientific equipment popping up in places as well as future-cars zipping past on a stretch of road in some rounds. There's a courtyard segment I rather liked with a domed central structure you can use for a bit of protection or to set up traps, as well as a walkway you can use a pad to boost up to and overlook the battleground. Here's YouTuber Mysca going on a tour of the map:
In other PTR patch news, Sombra has a new unlockable "Boop" noise because why not double down on that, and there's a cool "Stay as team" option so you can stay as a group after a match has finished if you found a bunch of people you got on with and want to continue playing with them but aren't a pre-made set.
There's also the massive Symmetra rework Brendy wrote about a week ago. Here are the full PTR patch notes for her, though:
- Photon Barrier
Replaces her existing Photon Shield ability Generates a large energy barrier in front of Symmetra that blocks enemy fire as it travels forward
- Shield Generator (New Ultimate Ability)
Symmetra's Ultimate ability now offers a choice between her Teleporter and a new option: Shield Generator Shield Generator places a device that grants additional shields to any ally within the its effective radius, regardless of barriers, walls, or obstacles between heroes and the Shield Generator
- Photon Projector (Primary Fire)
Range has been increased from 5 meters to 7 meters
- Sentry Turret
Number of turrets that can be carried has been increased from 3 turrets to 6 turrets Cooldown has been reduced from 12 seconds to 10 seconds
Decreased health from 200 to 50 Increased shields from 0 to 350
Replaced with the new Photon Barrier ability
If you want to try them out before they come to the regular game you can download the PTR by opening the Overwatch tab on the Battle.net launcher and selecting PTR: Overwatch from the Region/Account dropdown menu. The only caveats are that you need to own Overwatch, you can use an account from any region except China, and there's a limit of 10,000 concurrent players.