UPDATE: The Nov 15 patch has been delayed. Read more.
It’s been a long time coming, but Overwatch 2 is set for its first big update in the coming days. And Genji and Zarya mains best make use of that time before both heroes are nerfed.
The long-awaited and heavily hyped next major patch update for Overwatch 2, which was supposed to launch in late October alongside the OWL Playoffs and Halloween event, was pushed back to mid-November, delaying Genji and Sombra nerf.
The update’s patch notes were leaked last month, detailing huge nerfs to the likes of Genji, Sombra, DVa, Zarya, and Kiriko. The folks over at GGRecon made the claim that both Genji and Sombra would be the focus of the next big patch, which was initially expected to go live on the OWL Practice Servers on October 24, ahead of a planned big launch for all players on October 26.
Now, as we head towards the end of Season 1, the big update is set for launch on November 15, and the aforementioned heroes are all set for some big changes.
- Hack ability lockout duration reduced from 1.75 to 1.5 seconds
- Hacked enemies are no longer valid targets for hacking for the duration of the effect
- Hacked damage multiplier reduced from 40 to 25%
With Sombra, she saw a pretty significant damage boost heading into Season 1, and the dev team is looking to refine this further.
“She gained a lot more damage to help account for the reduced ability lockout duration of Hack,” Blizzard posted. “This has proven to be too deadly for a flanker with easy access to the enemy backlines, and we’ve similarly had to address the damage output of heroes like Tracer, Reaper, and now, Genji, in the 5v5 format.
“She can also no longer channel hack on an already hacked target as feedback indicated the reduced cooldown combined with hacking from stealth proved to be too frustrating for many players. This is essentially a per-target cooldown that enables Hack to keep its current 4 second cooldown for potentially hacking multiple targets.“
There’s a fairly big hope within the Overwatch 2 community that this doesn’t impact her “annoyance” gauge: this is what makes her a viable pick for Competitive, and her ability to 1v1 squishies after a quick hack made her incredibly fun to play.
- Maximum ammo reduced from 30 to 24
- Shuriken damage reduced from 29 to 27
“Genji is a Hero that has greatly benefited from the move to 5v5. Changing to a single Tank and the reduction of crowd control has meant Genji has had less obstacles in his way, however he hasn’t received tuning updates since he wasn’t actively in the meta until launch (something also informed by our general preference to avoid preemptive adjustments when possible). We also saw that, in early beta tests, other flanking Heroes such as Tracer and Reaper were also significantly more effective in OW2. These changes will bring Genji more in line with the other flanking damage heroes.“
Genji has found his way to the top of a dive meta in Season 1, with many players feeling his ammo stock and overall damage output to be too high. These changes make him slightly more vulnerable, but still viable.
- Barrier duration reduced from 2.5 to 2 seconds
- Barrier cooldown increased from 10 to 11 seconds
“Early player sentiment predicted Zarya as one of the weakest solo tanks in 5v5 though her high damage potential and barrier uptime have proven to be extremely effective. For opponents, feedback has indicated this can feel as though Zarya has very limited windows of vulnerability, which feels difficult to deal with when combined with her ramping damage potential.
These changes will reduce the barrier uptime, making it slightly more difficult for her to gain energy and will provide enemies with more time to deal damage to her.“
Zarya’s biggest change makes her easier to take down: she’s incredibly easy to climb in Comp with at the moment, and the changes don’t make her unviable, but they reduce her overall impact and power, and should see her shift down the meta tier.
- Fusion Cannon spread increased from 3.5 to 3.75
- Boosters impact damage reduced from 25 to 15
D.va ended up feeling too deadly after the last round of changes given how resilient she can be with the improved Defense Matrix. Both our stats and high-level player feedback regarded her as not effective enough before that compared with other tanks, so this is a partial revert to establish some middle ground there.
D.va is basically invincible as it stands in a 1v1 vs squishies, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but finding that middle ground between pre-OW2 and Season 1 is probably the sweet spot she needs to be in.
- Swift Step invulnerability duration reduced from 0.4 to 0.25 seconds
This invulnerability window is primarily intended to help avoid instantly dying to something unseen after teleporting through walls, but it ended up being a little too long and led to some confusion when shooting at Kiriko
What are your thoughts on the changes and update? Sound off in the comments below!