Overwatch Megathread: Bastion is our friend


I never played Mercy much before, but I find her pretty interesting to play now? I don’t think I like her enough for me to end my reign of terror as a Bad Aim Ana Main, but she’s still a lot more fun now.


I get that the Mercy mass rez was a little too common but it was still a good play. When you pulled it off, you felt like the shit. Haven’t played enough of new Mercy to know but new Mercy ult seems a little too mild. Doesn’t tilt the battle enough.


a thing i’ve thought a lot but not sure if i’ve ever put down anywhere is: y’all know that feeling when you’re having an argument with someone, think the argument is done and feel a bit exhausted, and then they suddenly bring up another point that starts the argument over again? the Mercy team rez was the video game equivalent of that for me.


Do you feel like people focus Mercy less since the change? I have not been able to play enough to know.


I can’t say I’ve noticed the trends but for me focussing on Mercy was more about the healing than the rez’s I was playing a bit of mercy and it sure felt like they were focussing on me but it’s possible I’m just not very good.


new dva is just a w+m1 pyro. Anyone who holds s as dva needs to pick a new character

If Mercy didn’t fly, I wouldn’t notice that she ults honestly. I miss high-impact mercy ults, but I guess Blizzard feels there shouldn’t be high impact defense plays :expressionless:




can blizzard just fuck off with their mercy changes


they’re really at it with those Mercy patches. it feels like their issue is with her having the rez ability at all.


It’s annoying that Blizzard seems to think that these abilities that are very defense-oriented and powerful are bad because they undo or prevent damage caused by characters who specialize in left-clicking to death and makes those people feel weak. Overwatch is a zero-sum game. Their :frowning: about getting their ult undone or prevented was completely matched by my :smiley: about undoing or preventing their ult. It absolutely sucks that Blizzard is committed to making what I like doing be weak in order to make streamers and traditional fps players happy.


I am trying to be positive or have something insightful to say but I’m miserable.


I feel like I’m missing a vital piece of info


I’ve basically moved on from a Mercy support to Zenyata because these changes just keep coming.


same? The latest patch I can see is back in September? Maybe it’s a console thing??? Nope.


On the PTR (the test server Blizzard uses to push changes they’ve made of heroes and give the public a chance to test them out before they hit everybody else) Mercy’s resurrection ability has been changed so that it always works on a 30 second cool down. The current Mercy has the same cool down rate, but would instantly reset the cool down when you used your ultimate and lower the ability’s cool down to 10 seconds. This effectively makes her less powerful because depending on how a fight played out, you could get 4 rezzes in about half a minute.

Broadly though, there’s a larger issue about hero accessibility, what the community thinks qualifies as “good” characters and skilled play. Dva was another recent character that had a powerful defense ability nerfed and had a damage dealing one added. Not to blow up their spot, but AppleCider was a guest on Gita Jackson and Patricia Hernandez’s podcast where they got deep into this. It’s a good listen.


Yeah I was wondering what was up because evidently they haven’t even announced this as a patch they’re doing, and I uninstalled the PTR back when Orisa came out when I realized that so many people wanted to play new heroes and had faster load times than me that I’d never get the chance.

Also, generally, I kind of just avoid podcasts about video games. I’m bad at listening to people slowly give me information that I could get faster if I just read something.


I also wrote a huge piece about Mercy, well before changes - https://medium.com/@veryapplecider/why-does-everyone-hate-mercy-5888dfcd9aea

In short, they stealth added a PTR update where the changes @ApparitionOnLine mentioned went into effect. While they have doubled the effective rez range while in Valkyrie, the 30sec hard cooldown on rez means this is not really a material change or boost to how the ability works and is a huge nerf. This complete character rework to make her “less passive” has only made her less focused, but more powerful in some ways. She’s been given an ult ability that does a lot of stuff but never gives you clear choice of what to do or when to do it. It has unbalanced her from how the other supports work now, all in the name of changing her from “run in and rez for ult” play that DPS players hated because she would rez your big ult kills, to currently “rez a pick, rez several picks during ult” play that DPS players also hate.

Given that Lucio also got his wall-riding passive speed boost nerfed in the PTR as well, along with Genji having his ult boosted a little bit (even with upcoming changes to losing ult charge if you get stunned/killed during animation for all characters), a narrative is being added to.

That narrative is that many pro players and streamers, many of whom are invested in DPS play, hate Mercy. They’ve always hated resurrect, they’ve hated how “low skill” characters get big powerful abilities, they hate Mercy undoing their hard work. Resurrect is disempowering, even if they wouldn’t say it quite like that. Shooter communities dislike disempowerment but Mercy represents the worst of feeling powerless, and it’s combined with an enmity towards people who don’t conform perfectly to high level shooter play given the shitty meritocracy fantasy towards skill people cling to in FPSes. Despite Overwatch being sold initially as a game that everyone would enjoy and play, despite a lack of experience with shooters, this game is rapidly moving towards being a profitable e-sports experience. There is no room for Mercy in this way, same with a lot of other support stuff.


I don’t play competitive at all (too stressful, too much time investment). I have the good fortune that, even though I am terrible at playing Mercy, I often play with someone who is really good at the character. My experience from playing quick play, usually with friends, the recent Mercy changes made her extremely powerful to the team. So powerful in fact that if one team had a Mercy and the other didn’t, I feel the team that did not is at a disadvantage. I think the power of the Resurrection ability is so high in terms of changing the flow of the game that some amount of “nerfing” was necessary. I’m seeing way more people resurrected in total during the game than I ever did with the “old” Mercy. The current PTR changes seem too harsh though (much like the previous Roadhog changes).

In terms of DPS players hating Mercy, I play Soldier quite a bit and I think Mercy is a great part of the game. Of course, she’s a high priority target in any engagement, but I like the dynamic. What I would really like to see is new healer characters.

I’ve been playing Overwatch since it launched and the dramatic changes to the characters has always had their ups and downs. They changed Roadhog from a one-hit kill machine to lukewarm to pretty good. They changed Symmetra from a side-show to a death machine in the right hands. It’s certainly interesting having gameplay change so much month-to-month, but is it a good thing?


I think the thing that really sticks out about the constant Mercy changes to me isn’t even that she’s getting a rework - those can be good, just look at Symmetra, but that these are reworks tailored to a certain segment of the Overwatch player base that seems to have disdain for Mercy at a ground level and probably won’t be happy until her mechanics are removed entirely from the game.

You could see it start at the beginning, when Blizzard originally announced a rework because they decided that her play was too “passive” and encouraged her to hide in a corner telling all their teammates to die on the point. This is not something a lot of Mercy players ever did, I think a 1-3 person Rez was way way way more common across all levels of play (just look at the stats for how many people even had the Huge Rez achievement!), but it was parroted enough by professional streamers and picked up by the competitive Overwatch community and repeated ad nauseam until it was eventually just accepted as fact and eventually validated by Blizzard.

Then the rework came along and the same people that pushed for the changes spent weeks dunking on Mercy players for being nerfed, popular streamers would troll people who wanted to play as her, etc. And a lot of people were totally fine with that, they thought it was funny. Of course, the rework actually ended up being very powerful because Mercy players were actually good at the character and the rework added a lot of utility and mobility options for players who were already used to using their Rez and GA, which went against the narrative that Mercy is low skill. So now she’s overpowered and needs to get knocked down. A lot of players seem to think that Rez has no place in the game entirely, and I think that’s going to be the next thing they push for.

This went on a lot longer than I intended, and a lot of it reiterates what really smart folks like @AppleCider have been saying for a while, but basically it’s a real bummer that Blizzard marketed this game as a multiplayer experience for everyone but is increasingly targeting the game to the smaller, more “traditional” competitive FPS community. For a company that says they want to deal with the toxicity in their community every change and rationale they’ve given for the balance lately seems to do the exact opposite. Overwatch as a welcome and diverse place with characters that appeal to everyone and can be effective and powerful even in the hands of people who don’t traditionally play FPS games was a great experience. Overwatch as an increasingly competitive e-sport just makes me want to play Destiny.


I can’t think of any other multiplayer game that’s had such radical shifts in mechanics over the course of its first year (and a half). It gives me the impression that Blizzard is not confident in their own design, and seem to believe that the only way of keeping the game alive as a platform in the long-term is to skew their balancing decisions heavily toward the squeakiest wheels in the Reddit and competitive communities.

And…they’re not very good at that. Dota 2 does a similar thing as far as game balance, where they look at the pick rates of heroes in the competitive scene and make decisions about how to balance them from there. But their approach is to make very small reductions in the efficacy of the most competitively-popular heroes, like we’re talking fractions of a second cooldown changes and slight 5-10 point bumps in spell mana costs. Then giving the less-popular heroes new tools or small buffs to get them back in player’s minds.

Blizzard is weirdly obsessed with two approaches: big, round number changes in stats/cooldowns, and unnecessary full overhauls. Remember when Symmetra could give teammates +50 shields? Well that was clearly too much, but they brought it down to 25, then instead of trying to find the numbers that worked well for her, they totally changed her core abilities.

That seems to be the same direction they’re going with Mercy, and it’s been kind of a disaster so far.