Blizzard Talks About Overwatch 2 Beta, Shares Plans To Buff Support And Improve Queue Times
Blizzard says it is dedicated to "more regular communication with our players" as they develop Overwatch 2.
As the first week of Overwatch 2's technical beta comes to a close, developer Blizzard is sharing its plans for the game moving forward. According to a blog post published on the official Overwatch website, the team's current top priorities are making support characters more desirable to players--which will ultimately lead to shorter queue times--as well as improving the game's UI.
Right now, undesirable support characters seem to be the game's biggest issue. During the technical beta, Blizzard says it observed that support heroes were "too vulnerable to diving and flanking attacks with fewer shields and no second tank focusing on protecting them," making them too passive and not very viable options for players. Because of this, the queue time for tanks and damage players has continuously risen.
In order to counteract these complaints and the rising queue times, Blizzard says it has made a "significant adjustment" to the role, including upping their overall durability and power. However, these changes are only part of the studio's initial plan for improving the game's balance. Long term, the team believes the most effective way to tackle the issue is by adding "exciting new support heroes to the game," which they intend to do in the future.
Additionally, Blizzard says it plans to improve Overwatch 2's UI, particularly what's displayed on the new scoreboard. According to Blizzard, while the original idea with the scoreboard's medal system was to give "positive reinforcement for personal performance and let players know individually how they were contributing to the team," it's since realized the information provided has led to "varying interpretations by players." As such, the new and improved scoreboard will now display key statistics--such as eliminations, assists, deaths, damage, damage mitigated, and healing--in real time to all players. Blizzard says the new board will be built in a way that "mirrors other competitive games and sports," and will provide a more accurate assessment of what's happening in the game.
In addition to laying out these plans, Blizzard also reinforced its commitment to "carefully listening" to community feedback and maintaining regular communication with its players through weekly updates. Today's blog post is merely the first of many leading up to the game's release. As of right now, Overwatch 2 does not have a release date, though we speculate it should hit PC and consoles sometime in 2023.
Activision Blizzard has come under pressure and scrutiny lately for its workplace culture, as well as controversies surrounding its top boss, Bobby Kotick, who is accused of knowing about and covering up instances of sexual harassment and abuse. Kotick reportedly also threatened to kill someone.
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