Overwatch 2 is in beta. Blizzard was obviously interested in getting players into what has been developed so far for the PvP part of the game, but it’s far from balanced. The game is basically in freefall at this point, with the Overwatch team trying to rework and reimagine characters’ abilities, damage, and as quickly as possible. So after acknowledging that Overwatch’s support heroes were a bit lacklusterBlizzard has updated the game with several new changes once again, including a super kick for Zenyatta.
The patch notes are quite extensive. Support Heroes have most of the changes as a whole, but not all of them are buffs. Zenyatta gains an all-new ability, a passive Snap Kick, which makes her melee more powerful. It knocks enemy players back, dealing 50% more damage than normal melee, thus allowing the monk to stay alive a little longer in skirmishes.
Brigitte also gets buffs to her knockback abilities, with her Shield Bash doing double the knockback it did before. Ana’s Rifle’s ammo has been increased from 12 to 15, and the effect duration of her biotic grenade has been reduced from four to three seconds, putting more focus on her shots. Baptiste had his healing ammo increased from 10 to 13, nothing too exciting, while Lucio was nerfed to make his self-healing ability less effective on himself as his survivability was ridiculous.
Elsewhere, Zarya’s Graviton Surge ult is slightly nerfed, lasting just 3.5 seconds. Wrecking Ball was buffed again only increasing its knockback on roll. Winston’s new secondary shot ammo reduced from 20 to 12 and Shadow’s speed increase when in stealth mode reduced from 65% to 50%.
The Soldier has also been nerfed, slowing his movement when using spirit and decreasing the damage dealt by his pulse rifle. But on the other hand, his ult will now allow critical hits if his shot was a crit outside of his ult. As a consequence, his rifle will also have the damage that the rifle does outside of the ult. The Newbie Sojourn’s railgun is now slightly more accurate, doubling the size of the projectile. Additionally, its Powerslide cooldown has been reduced by one second from seven to six seconds.
Roadhog’s Ultimate Whole Hog has also been completely overhauled – changing from a channeled skill to a transforming skill, wing Soldier 76, Genji, and Winston. This means you can also use your regular abilities during their duration without canceling the ult. This is a big difference from the way it presented itself before. Whole Hog previously left Roadhog vulnerable as it was the only time he wouldn’t be able to self-heal, and focusing him would be much easier. This update changes that significantly.
Other updates are bug and UI patches. Additionally, Quick Play Classic is now enabled, eliminating the need for players to queue for roles. But as someone who loves QPC in the original Overwatch, this is a lot harder to manage – the two tanks, two attacks, one healing meta seems to have been average in this mode and it feels ridiculously OP.
Overwatch 2 still has a long way to go. As someone who loved the first game and still plays in 2022, there’s a lot to be done to make this feel as cohesive and coordinated as the original. Reducing team size has changed the dynamics of maps, skills, tactics and it still feels like 5v5 has all the necessary pieces to work. Helping healers feel more powerful can just make extremely chaotic scrims longer instead of clearer. I hope these changes can help bring the strongest teams together, but like others, I need more to feel that Overwatch 2 isn’t just Overwatch 1.5.