Early Access Patch V0.9
Patch releasing 12.00 GMT July 11th, 2023.
It’s time to load up, Champions!
The V0.9 Game Update is just around the corner, bringing with it our most Dashing new Hero yet, alongside some substantial improvements to our in-game chat moderation systems, as well as equally substantial changes to our in-game audio mixing!
At the risk of taking our sights off of TwinBlast for a moment, our Sound Team have been firing on all cylinders - making momentous improvements to the way that audio is optimised and delivered during matches. We’ll let Bartosz go into more detail a little later into this blog, but the team’s recent work on the sound front really builds on Predecessor’s immersion.
The other big thing to talk about in V0.9 is arguably one of our biggest pushes to address in-game toxicity to date.
As is all the rage right now, we’re working with an incredibly efficient and effective (and industry-leading) artificial intelligence tool to fully automate the moderation process for in-game messaging. But what does this mean specifically? Read on for more, and keep an eye out for a dedicated blog on Tackling Toxicity, coming early next week.
And lastly of course there’s our gun-toting new action Hero, TwinBlast! There’s no use waffling on about him here though, so let’s blast right into it!
- Kari, Senior Community Manager
A new hero appears
TwinBlast is locked and loaded!
Blast into battle with the gunslinging extraordinaire, TwinBlast, the latest Hero to join the Predecessor roster!
Evasive, explosive and dashing in more ways than one, TwinBlast is second to none when it comes to gunplay!
Watch TwinBlast In Action!
Before we Rocket Dash into more details, why not watch what TwinBlast has to offer in our latest ability overview video!
Click the image below to be blown away by some TwinBlast action!
Using an Ability will cause TwinBlast's next 2 basic attacks (within 5s) to benefit from 40% increased Total Attack Speed.
Double Shot [LMB]:
Ranged basic attack that fires two projectiles, each dealing 24 (+50% Bonus Physical Power) physical damage and applying on-hit effects at 50% effectiveness.
Effect: TwinBlast charges and fires two super-heated piercing projectiles in the target’s direction with each dealing 40/60/80/100/120 (+40% Bonus Physical Power)(+60% Magical Power) physical damage and applying on-hit effects to all targets hit at 60% effectiveness.
Rocket Dash [E]:
Passive: When TwinBlast deals damage to an enemy Hero with a Basic Attack or Ability, Rocket Dash’s cooldown is decreased by 0.5s.
Effect: TwinBlast dashes.
Vortex Grenade [RMB]:
Effect: Launch a grenade in target direction that explodes upon contact with an Enemy Target, dealing 20/35/50/65/80 (+100% Total Physical Power) physical damage in a small area and Slowing by 15% for 0.75s.
Max Charges: 2.
Effect: Transform your guns into fully automatic machine guns, unleashing a barrage of 25 (+6% Attack Speed) bullets over 3s, dealing 12/20/38 damage per bullet (+20% Bonus Physical Power)(+15% Magical Power), for a total of 300/500/700 (+500% Bonus Physical Power)(+375% Magical Power) at 25 bullets.
New Skin - Shadow Ops TwinBlast
It’s a bit of a shot in the dark, but are you a fan of the covert-operative look? You know, the sneaky sneaky, crawling through vents type thing? Well if you are - have we got the skin for you!
No mission is impossible for the new Shadow Ops Skin [rare] for TwinBlast, available in V0.9 in the store!
Improved Chat Moderation
It’s time to talk about one of the hottest topics we see right now. No it’s not the British summertime causing some of our computers to melt, it’s in-game chat messages.
It’s no secret that in-game chat messages haven’t exactly always been hitting the quality bar we were hoping to see under our current moderation system.
We’re pleased to reveal that as of V0.9 we’re getting with the times and deploying the latest in totally-not-evil AI technology to help shore up our in-game message defences.
Specifically this AI tool has been extensively trained to detect hostile, insulting or discriminatory language and automagically apply appropriate sanctions, scaling from temporary chat bans right the way up to the permanent removal of in-game chat privileges, with repeat offences leading to increasingly harsher results.
Obviously there’s a lot more to be said here, so please look forward to a blog post explicitly covering the ways in which we’re Tackling Toxicity on Monday.
We don’t normally hand the mic over to other teams in the fortnightly patch notes, but considering we wouldn’t have a mic if it wasn’t for the Sound Team we thought we’d make an exception! Take it away, Bartosz!
"Not only have we added new sounds for TwinBlast, the Core and Minions, but we're also dedicated to improving the audio mix for an even better experience.
In a recent update we made a change by assigning each Hero to a listener switch. This means that as a local player, you'll now enjoy fully spatialized enemies and allies, greatly enhancing the overall clarity of the action and making navigation through the world of Predecessor a breeze. We want to empower you to make the most informed decisions after all!
Furthermore, we're working on improving the balance of the audio mix and adding a limiter to ensure that audio doesn't clip during intense moments.
We are also addressing the crash issues you might have been experiencing by optimising our audio and limiting the number of sounds that can play simultaneously. Unfortunately the crash is ultimately caused by the Unreal Engine's editor but rest assured, we're on top of it!
We genuinely hope you enjoy these changes, and we would love to hear your thoughts. Please feel free to share your feedback with us. Thank you for being an amazing part of our community!"
- Bartosz, Lead Sound Designer
Crunch’s level 6 power spike is extremely strong as it effectively unlocks the rest of his kit via new ReCrunch combos. To help mitigate the raw strength of this spike, we’re reducing the amount of healing he gains at that moment to ensure opponents have a fair chance of matching his aggression.
◆ Base healing decreased from 30/85/140 to 20/80/140.
Khaimera’s Unleash ability allows for some heavy synergy with on-hit itemisation due to how frequently he can proc their effects during his Q window. Due to these interactions, the rest of his kit must always be tuned with on-hit purchases such as Sky Splitter in mind. To help alleviate this balance bottleneck we’re adding an on-hit modifier to his Unleash resulting in them dealing 25% less damage while his Q is active, thereby allowing us to better balance Khaimera both now and in the future, and redistribute some of that lost potential into his kit in other ways.
◆ Added 75% On-Hit Modifier.
◆ Total Physical Power Scaling increased from 40% to 45%.
◆ Bonus Physical Power Scaling increased from 75% to 85%.
The Shadow Huntress has been running rampant as of late, heavily outshining other Carries across the board. To remedy this we’re dropping down some of the raw damage Kira has available in her kit via her Vengeance Passive and Mercy, as well as ensuring there is an appropriate mana cost to her to her trades.
On the flip side though, alongside some QoL changes to Mercy, we’ve now granted Kira’s Ultimate the ability to proc on-hit effects such as Sky Splitter and Ashbringer (at a reduced value) to better open up “on-hit Kira” as a legitimate playstyle and have re-tuned her Ultimate with these build differences in mind.
◆ Bonus damage per stack decreased from 2% to 1.5%.
Shadow Glide [E]:
◆ Range decreased from 600 to 525.
◆ Mana Cost increased from 50 to 60.
◆ Cooldown increased from 18/17/16/15/14 to 20/18.5/17/15.5/14.
◆ Base Damage changed from 10/25/40/55/70 to 20/30/40/50/60.
◆ Total Physical Power Scaling decreased from 80%/85%/90%/95%/100% to 80%/82.5%/85%/87.5%/90%.
◆ Bonus Minions/Monster Damage changed from 10/25/40/55/70 to 20/30/40/50/60.
◆ Mana Cost changed from 40 to 38/41/44/47/50.
◆ Range increased from 1400 to 1450.
◆ Projectile Speed increased from 15000 to 23500.
◆ Base Damage increased from 90/180/270 to 180/270/360.
◆ Total Physical Power Scaling decreased from 490% to 330%.
◆ Critical Strike Modifier increased from 80% to 100%.
◆ Can now trigger On-Hit effects at 30% value.
Murdock has been struggling to keep pace ever since the ol’ V0.8 nerfs. We’re pulling back on them slightly to try and hit a better middleground.
◆ Attack Speed Growth increased from 2.2 to 2.4.
Shots Fired [Passive]:
◆ Cooldown decreased from 12s - 6.9s (-0.3 per level) to 12.8s - 6s (-0.4 per level).
Phase’s ability to pump out heals in the lane provides too much safety, especially when combined with the ability to yoink her Carry out of danger. To provide more room for punishment, we’re dropping down the raw healing potential of Phase’s Passive and shifting it into scaling to ensure Phase must itemise on the squishy side to benefit from larger heals, while also making the proportional mana cost of using her Pull a more significant cost when it is forced by her opponents.
◆ Base Mana decreased from 400 to 340.
Essence Catalyst [Passive]:
◆ Healing decreased from 16-135 (+7 per level) to 10-112 (+6 per level).
◆ Magical Power Scaling increased from 10% to 25%.
Energy Lance [E]:
◆ Mana cost decreased from 80/90/100/110/120 to 70/75/80/85/90.
Hyper Flux [R]:
◆ Movement Speed increased from 125% to 130%.
The previous round of nerfs to Sevarog helped alleviate the potency of his Q spam in the mid-game fights, but resulted in him feeling a little too vulnerable when farming up. By granting his Siphon a little extra kick in the early game, Sevarog should have a better time matching trades and reliably stacking up to find a happier middle-ground in strength.
◆ Physical Power Growth increased from 2.4 to 2.8.
◆ Base Damage increased from 30/50/70/90/110 to 40/65/90/115/140.
◆ Total Physical Power Scaling decreased from 70% to 60%.
The Fey’s ability to default to passive play in lane by maxing out her wave clear can lead to uninteractive loops where she throws an Untamed Growth and nukes the wave without much room for recourse. To better encourage her to interact with her opponent (and further unleash the boxing machine we all know she is, deep down) we’re redistributing some strength away from Untamed Growth and into her Harvest Nettles ability.
◆ Movement Speed decreased from 665 to 660.
◆ Damage amplification increased from 18% to 20%.
◆ Base Damage decreased from 130/190/250/310/370 to 120/175/230/285/340.
A quick mana bump to leave our Mages feeling less parched for mana.
◆ Mana increased from 150 to 200.
Same as Epoch - more mana!
◆ Mana increased from 150 to 200.
Saphir’s has proven a little too dominant and overshadows Razorback in many cases due to its raw health increase. Given how it’s a strong scaling health option, we’re opting to nudge down its temporary health gain so that it’s less of a catch-all choice.
◆ Atlas Health Gain decreased from 20% to 18%.
Infernum has seen more play across various Heroes since its mini-rework last patch (which is great), but it’s still proving a little too powerful and needs another quick hit to its damage output to bring it into greater parity.
◆ Cinder Base damage decreased from 20 to 15.
◆ Cinder Bonus Physical Power Scaling decreased from 110% to 100%.
Additional bug fixes may be added after the patch is live.
◆ Fixed a bug where Kingsbane’s damage passive “Chaos” does not work.
◆ Fixed a bug where Greystone’s Assault the Gates (RMB) animation would not execute correctly.
◆ Fixed a bug where Heroes could get stuck in a hole behind Orb Prime’s pit.
◆ Fixed a bug where waterwheel water VFX was not displaying correctly in the practice map.
◆ Fixed a bug where Deathstalker’s damage displayed as Mooncleaver in the death recap.
◆ Fixed a bug where activating auto buy when in-game and using it to buy a first item results in no undo functionality.
◆ Fixed a bug where item slots in the in-game shop menu appear blank and cannot be selected.
◆ Fixed a bug where the player’s camera could lockup when opening the shop upon death.
◆ Fixed a bug where Revenant would receive damage from Gideon’s Cosmic Tether after pulling another user into the Nether Realm.
◆ Fixed a bug where the Execute Skull for Feng Mao’s Earth Shatter (R) would fail to show.
◆ Fixed a bug where Heroes were able to avoid damage from Primal Fangtooth by using abilities that remove collision.
◆ Fixed a bug where Peppermint Kallari’s hat would show while in Camo.
◆ Fixed a bug with Auto-Open where users could get soft locked if they navigate out of base with the Crest screen present and confirm a purchase.
◆ Fixed a bug with the Loading Screen where it would only display two Hero Portraits.
◆ Fixed a bug where disconnecting and reconnecting on the Loading Screen will cause the user to softlock on the Camera Overview and will be unable to play in the session.
◆ Fixed a bug where it was possible to queue up for Practice Mode in a party.
◆ Fixed a bug where if a player was issued a ban, a duration notifier would fail to show and they could become soft-locked in queue.
◆ Fixed a bug causing the game to crash after Draft is complete.