Ranked in Overwatch 2 caused a lot of uncertainty, which Blizzard did not want. They will make some modifications in Season 3 and more in Season 4, all with the goal of improving system clarity. Overwatch 2’s Game Director, Aaron Keller, has provided an update detailing Overwatch’s future intentions, including improvements to Competitive, out-of-game advancement, and hero balance.
Blizzard has received comments that the game isn’t as rewarding to play, and that players can’t get the stuff they want in a reasonable amount of time. Blizzard is taking a first step toward fixing this in Season 3, and further information will be released next week.
This piece is aimed at looking at some of the topics that have come up in the community over the course of Season 2. This won‘t be comprehensive enough to look at everything that players are talking about, but our intent is to do this every few weeks, so we will be able to start diving into smaller topics as we go. Also, the goal here is to keep you up to date on what we’re thinking and planning, but not necessarily to be the source for all the reasoning and detail behind those decisions.
So let’s get to it!
The new Ranked mode suffered from poor comprehension. There was confusion around players’ real rank and how that translated to their skill level, difficulty forming groups with friends, and a negative impression of the matchmaker when players of different ranks were put in the same match (even if their skill levels were similar). We will be implementing some changes in S3 and quite a few more in S4 all aimed at creating more clarity in the system. More details on short-term changes and long-term vision will be coming soonTM.
We’ve gotten feedback from players that the game doesn’t feel rewarding enough to play and that players can’t earn the items they want in a short enough period of time. We’ll be making a change in S3 that should address some of these complaints. This is a first step. We will have more details to share about this next week.
There are a fair number of changes to ult cost in S3. We’ll be lowering the ult refund when swapping heroes to 25% as part of this tuning pass.
Balance frequency is a big topic. Bug fixes to hot fixing should enable us to address balance faster and would have enabled us to tune Hog earlier in S2. We’re still planning an initial and midseason patch each season, but now have the full ability to fill in between those as necessary.
One-shots and frustrating hero mechanics are being discussed a lot in the community and on the team. This is an ongoing discussion, but the topic has a lot of nuances that involves the frequency of those mechanics, trade-offs for using it, the overall power level of a hero, how often the hero is played, as well as things like a hero’s fantasy. Know that we’re listening here, the feedback has been great and very welcome, and we’ll come back to this when we have more to share.
Thanks so much for reading, and please keep the feedback coming. We’re listening.