Overwatch

Overwatch 2 Beta: Week One Developer Blog

Overwatch 2 Beta: Week One Developer Blog

The first week of the Overwatch 2 Beta is behind us—time flies when you’re having fun! The team has been hard at work compiling player feedback, squashing bugs, and gearing up for the mid-cycle patch. As we mentioned on the Overwatch forums last week, we’re going to talk a little more about the Mercy and Symmetra changes, as well as initial thoughts on Junker Queen and queue times!  

Mercy  

Guardian Angel gives Mercy important mobility that is key to her survivability. Over time, players learned that if you jump during the ability at a specific time, you could launch Mercy up into the air. This is super cool; however, it was completely unintentional. Mercy’s “super jump” was the result of a bug that occurred during Guardian Angel, but players made it a part of her utility. We liked the idea of a bug turned into a feature, so the changes to Mercy in this beta were meant to make the super jump more reliable and consistent.

We saw some issues with the implementation of this latest version throughout the first week of the beta, so we’ll be changing up the ability in the mid-cycle patch. Our goal with the next change is to give players even more control over Guardian Angel while also increasing its flexibility.

After the patch, Guardian Angel will not automatically launch Mercy into the air, but it will now have a meter that charges while the ability is active. When cancelling Guardian Angel with Jump, Mercy will now be launched into the direction she is facing. The more charge she gets during the ability, the more momentum the launch has when she cancels it with Jump. We’re looking forward to seeing how the community engages with this ability in the beta to get Mercy ready for the Overwatch 2 launch! 

Symmetra 

We recognized in the first beta that Symmetra didn’t quite fit into the play space Overwatch 2’s changes were defining: Faster paces, more engagements, less barriers. There are fewer tanks that Symmetra can use to charge up, and the removal of Assault (2cp) maps takes away a defensive stage that she previously shined on.

We expected the changes to Symmetra’s Teleporter and secondary fire projectile speed to be the primary solutions, but we overshadowed these with other nerfs. One of these nerfs was no longer gaining ammo from barriers, which we removed to put power back into her ammo capacity since barriers are much less prevalent. Our reasoning for some of the other nerfs was that Symmetra is already a statistically strong hero, and we feared these changes alone would push her over the edge. That said, one of the benefits of this beta is that we can make changes and iterations prior to launch. We’re currently trying out the following changes in internal tests:

  • Secondary Fire projectile size increased from .4 back to .5
  • Secondary Fire charge time reduced from 1.2 seconds back to 1 second
  • Teleporter cooldown reduced from 16 seconds to 12 seconds 

Additionally, we have another change for her in mind that we’re currently testing internally. This iteration charges her primary fire beam to level 3 faster to help compensate for less tanks and shields to charge it up. We’re not sure if this change will stick, but our goal is to make Symmetra feel more natural in Overwatch 2. 

Junker Queen and continued testing 

Over the past week, we've seen tank queues surge with the release of Junker Queen as many players wanted to try out our newest hero. While this is generally something we expect when we release new heroes, we've been encouraged to see queue times improve and even out somewhat already.

Our initial thoughts on her gameplay are that she fits well into the more offensive, aggressive playstyle in Overwatch 2. We’ve fixed a few of her bugs in the upcoming mid-cycle patch, but she’s still early in the testing phase. We're going to continue to watch how she performs in the beta to prepare her for our launch. 

There are some other heroes we are watching, like Zenyatta and Sojourn, who may need to be tuned down a little prior to launch. We like the direction of Roadhog’s ultimate changes in the beta, and we’re now working on making it feel more intuitive and polished.

The team will continue to work on these improvements leading up to launch. In the meantime, you can expect some changes to Moira and Mercy in this upcoming mid-cycle patch!

Please keep sharing your feedback and thoughts. This beta brings us one step closer to launch, and we are thankful our community is involved in the testing!  

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