Overwatch 2 has had a bit of a rough start. But as a variety of bugs are addressed and discussed, Blizzard is highlighting hero balance as it eyes future seasons. A certain shuriken-wielding hero in particular is on nerf watch, as the developer observed an early “dominating win-rate” in favor of the cyborg ninja Genji.
In a post-launch blog update from yesterday, Blizzard laid out a variety of observations concerning different heroes and their overall performance and fairness. Genji and Sojourn stood out as “the most popular [damage] heroes” in the early days of the game, though “they’ve since leveled out to the rest of the roster.” Popularity isn’t what the studio is concerned about, however. For now, the Overwatch team plans to “watch Genji carefully throughout the season” as the cybernetic wielder of pointy things might be tearing up other heroes a bit too much and too quickly.
With a current win-rate of 52 percent (which the studio notes has receded from where it originally was), Blizzard seems to be eyeing the damage role passive, which it notes “has particularly benefited heroes like Genji.” This passive juices movement speed and reload time after a successful elimination. Genji is a rather speedy and mobile hero to begin with, so having eliminations give him more of a speed boost on top of his ability to scale walls and double jump might make him a bit too agile.
That Genji is a bit too quick due to the damage role passive to be considered fair is a sentiment not uncommon around the internet right now. Blizzard gave no other indication as to how Genji might be nerfed, if he gets nerfed at all this season or next.
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Genji isn’t the only hero the team is observing. Symmetra and Torbjorn were called out in the update as “they are showing the highest win rates now at some ranks.” Sombra is also of concern to the studio as it wants to “ensure her targets have a reasonable time to fight back.”
While it’s safe to say that everyone likely hoped for a smoother roll out of Overwatch’s sequel, hopefully the conversation turns more to the details of the game and less about the overall stability of the experience.