Overwatch 2‘s second beta test is ready to go, and with the introduction of this new beta period comes a bunch of new changes to existing heroes, as well as the brand new hero called Junker Queen. However, many of these changes have rubbed existing players the wrong way. Overwatch‘s balance has always been a contentious topic within the community, but even I have to admit some of these changes are puzzling. The big controversy with these Overwatch 2 patch notes surrounds arguably one of the most popular Support heroes, Mercy, as well as changes to our teleporting queen Symmetra.
Symmetra got quite the rework, with her maximum ammo getting a buff (although she loses auto ammo generation when shooting shields), and her Secondary Fire receiving some changes. However, changes to her utility seem to be nerfed, with her Teleporter lasting a shorter time with less health, and her Sentry Turrets inflicting less movement speed reduction. For Overwatch 2, Symmetra wasn’t high on my list of nerfable champions in a meta filled with dive heroes, but maybe these changes weren’t intended to be nerfed at all.
Heroes might die now
But the most inexcusable change comes with a rework to Mercy’s kit. Mercy’s Guardian Angel (her ability that allows her to fly to an ally) now lost a popular “Slingshot” mechanic that allows her to fly to higher places. In exchange, at the end of her Guardian Angel ability, Mercy will automatically launch upwards. Mercy players will immediately understand how counter-intuitive this is. Mercy is required to use Guardian Angel to fly to an ally soul to resurrect them. But now, at the end of her Guardian Angel, Mercy will fly up, leaving her unable to rez them until she descends.
Support players have raised concerns about the state of the class in Overwatch 2, and judging by Mercy, it almost seems like Blizzard is just throwing changes at the wall to see what sticks. I can’t speak to the testing done with Mercy before these changes shipped, but her game plan is not particularly complicated, and this should have been caught. Now, Redditors are understandably sounding off, questioning the game’s balancing.
In brighter news, the Junker Queen seems to be a success, and other heroes received changes such as Reinhardt, Winston, Orisa, Bastion, Junkrat, and Pharah. You can read the full patch notes here to get a better idea of what changed during the second beta test.