Overwatch

Jeff Kaplan discusses Overwatch support adjustments, CC & barrier nerfs

by Michael Kelly
Blizzard Entertainment

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Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan discussed potential balance changes coming to the game in a Discord Q&A on May 8.

While speaking with YouTuber and content creator “Master Ian Gamer” over Discord, Kaplan teased upcoming changes to the game regarding balance and the meta as a whole.

Namely, the possible changes revolve around the Support role, as well as barriers and shields.

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“We’re making some buffs and nerfs very soon”, said Kaplan. “A lot of adjustments to supports [including] some buffing and some nerfing”.

With this in mind, it’s fair to say that we might see an overhaul to the way certain support characters work on a general level.

Kaplan noted that the game’s development team was working on “experimental” changes to Moira, so it’s possible that other support heroes might be getting big changes in the future, as well.

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Jeff Kaplan teased upcoming changes to Moira

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However, while support changes are certainly on the radar for Overwatch, he noted that the top priorities for the design team are barriers and crowd control.

“They are necessary to make Overwatch work like Overwatch”, said Kaplan in regard to abilities like Reinhardt’s Barrier Field and Sigma’s Experimental Barrier.

But while barriers might be a trademark of the game, he did admit that they can “cause big issues when the game feels dominated by them”.

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Reinhardt's Barrier Field is one of many barriers in Overwatch

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When Overwatch launched in 2016, Reinhardt and Winston were the only heroes in the game with true barrier abilities.

Now, with characters like Orisa, Brigitte, and Sigma on the roster, it’s easy to see why some players feel as though the abilities can be oppressive.

Regardless, it’s refreshing to know that massive sweeping changes to some of the game’s more tedious mechanics might be coming down the pipeline soon.