As we all know, the highly anticipated sequel to Blizzard’s brainchild had a rocky start to say the least. It was met with a slew of issues where players couldn’t get into the game or couldn’t access their transferred over content, or in some cases their PC shut off. Moreover, Overwatch 2 was a victim to several DDoS attacks. Due to the trouble that was caused to their playerbase, Activision Blizzard provided free in-game goodies and apologised for launch day problems.
It has been more than a week since Overwatch 2, and the developers have come up with post-launch updates for the title. These updates will help the player understand the changes coming to hero balance, map pool, competitive mode, and gameplay.
✨NEW DEV BLOG✨
Dive into our latest #Overwatch2 blog to get the rundown on
🦊 Hero Balance
📍 Map Pool
🆚 Competitive Mode
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) October 13, 2022
As the developers understand, the heroes are pretty balanced as they are, and no hero’s overall power level is far out of line with their goals. Every single hero on the Overwatch 2 roster has a win-rate of between 45%-55%. Therefore, they are not planning any immediate changes barring a targeted adjustment to Zarya in Total Mayhem which will go live with the next patch on October 25, 2022. All of their focus has now been diverted to the balancing changes for Season 2 of the game that will ensure that the overall game feels balanced and fair, while giving each season an identity of its own.
Tanks, tanks, and tanks
Since the game has changed its format from 6v6 to 5v5, the developers have understood that more players are opting for a tank role. Currently, the most popular hero on the roster is D.Va. as she has become significantly better post-beta. Reinhardt, Sigma, and Zarya currently lead the competition with an 53% unmirrored win rate. Zarya’s new ability is something developers are looking out for to make potential changes for next season.
Junker Queen’s Commanding shout had its dominance reduced, and the developers will try to keep her as an effective tank and fun to play. Next in focus would be Doomfist’s performance and play rate to evaluate his tanking ability and potentially make enhancements to Power Block and Meteor Strike.
Genji and Sojourn were the most popular heroes at launch, but then they slowly subsided and started matching the rest. Genji had a dominating win-rate, but it has now fallen to 52%. They will keep an eye on Genji to make sure he doesn’t get too dominant, and have also considered an adjustment to the damage role passive.
Sombra is one of the other high damage dealers, she has been adjusted so that her damage potential is optimal to the target she hacks. The developers also want to make sure that the players who have been hacked by her have enough time to fight back; therefore, they will balance hack ability-lockout duration as we approach Season 2.
Symmetra and Torbjorn are the next damage heroes they are paying attention too. These heroes have been experience a gradual increase in win-rate and that’s especially because they are effective counters to Genji, and Genji is a popular choice.
Kiriko and her Fox Spirit
Kirko has become popular among the community and has been received well, she clocked an initial play rate of 75%. Her win rate has also seen an increase from 48% to 52%. Her healing output averages in the middle of the roster, and her damage output is on the lower side of things. She is an effective support that helps players to survive longer in team fights.
The game will be having new and returning maps based on global locations, so that each feels fresh and exciting. To consolidate on that goal, the team will make adjustments to maps when the need arises. For season 1, these are the following maps for both Quick and Competitive Play:
- Ilios – Evening Lighting
- Lijiang Tower – Dawn Lighting
- Oasis – Night Lighting
- Nepal – Morning Lighting
- Busan – Night Lighting
- Circuit royal – Night Lighting
- Dorado – Evening Lighting
- Route 66 – Night Lighting
- Gibraltar – Morning Lighting
- Junkertown – Morning Lighting
- Midtown – Morning Lighting
- King’s Row – Evening Lighting
- Eichenwalde – Evening Lighting
- Hollywood – Morning Lighting
- Paraíso – Morning Lighting
- New Queen Street – Morning Lighting
- Colosseo – Evening Lighting
- Esperança – Morning Lighting
Maps will keep rotating in and out each season, and the developers will be looking to improving and tweaking them. Rialto will have new spots where additional cover has been added to help the map play better in a 5v5 format with reduced shield, this will take place in Season 2.
The developers have apologised for ranking the players too low during the first week of the game. They have figured out a bug that was hindering the player skill ratings, as a result many players were stuck in Bronze 5 when they should have been way higher. The most recent patch will help the players reach their true rank quicker, this will reflect during the next competitive ranking update.