Can we get a dev to talk about support?

I think Ana and Bap need their healing toned down for the most part. They’re the entire reason healcreep exists, and they’re also the entire reason they’re looking to tone down healing for everyone

The rest of the Supports shouldn’t pay for the sins of Ana/Bap.


That would basically make the issues we have with tank now be the issues we have with support in OW2. So nothing was learned.


I don’t think bap’s healing per se is broken (buffing it to 70 per direct was a little question however); it’s what all he can do while he has high healing which involves mobility, high poke damage, and the ability to make his team and himself immortal


I agree. This is a bad change, but some version of it is likely to go through, and it’s likely to make a whole role feel awful.

I understand that they felt that fights were taking too long (though from what we saw in the previous PvP show match that didn’t seem to be the case), but the way they chose to handle it make so little sense to me and shows so little thought.

When both teams collide in a all out brawl and both teams have an Ana and a Bap, I can see how that would lead to an overlong fight given that off tank’s damage is missing. This is a reasonable concern. Why nerf Zen’s healing though? It’s not a problem in this context. Why nerf Lucio’s healing or Mercy’s? They’re not the ones prolonging the fight indefinitely.

What’s more, there are a lot of situations where you apply healing that are not an all out brawl. If the enemy Genji, or the enemy Tracer, or the enemy Doomfist try to dive your Ana and you want to peel for her, then it doesn’t matter at all whether or not the other team is running Rein/Zarya or just Rein. It doesn’t figure into the situation. When you’re helping your Ashe take down the enemy Pharah, it doesn’t usually matter at all whether they have double shield or just Sigma. The game is made up of individual interactions. They couldn’t possibly have meant to change ALL of them.

There has to be some well thought out change that makes more sense. Bap and Moira both have incredible aoe healing throughput that can be increased even further through cooldowns. It’s possible to nerf this throughput and compensate them elsewhere without nerfing orb of harmony. It’s possible to nerf the added healing effects of Ana’s grenade without nerfing her healing darts (or Mercy’s healing, or Lucio’s healing). It’s possible to keep the healing portion of the support role from feeling ineffectual. It just requires more thought and work. I hope they put it in.


At the end of the day, I think the devs simply don’t know how to make sure that the game:

  1. Has short queue times.
  2. Appeals to fps players who want to play dps.
  3. Appeals to strategically minded tank players.
  4. Appeals to support players who enjoy healing.

Overwatch has always tried to balance those four aspects. My feeling is that for Overwatch 2, the devs have decided to focus as much as possible on 1 and 2 at the expense of 3 and 4, and hope that the problems will sort themselves out eventually.

This is fine. It’s their game and their prerogative, but it does leave a lot of players feeling left out. My hope is that sometime soon, one of the devs will post some information that either has:

  1. Something that makes support players look forward to OW2. Some new piece of information that looks exciting, or interesting for a support player.
  2. A statement that they’re aware of the problem, they don’t have a solution yet, but they’re working on it.

There was a lot of updates related to this subject posted by Community Manager AndyB here:

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There was indeed some amount of discussion there, but there were three major problems.

The first is that the solutions they propose don’t seem to make much sense. They’re too ham fisted to actually work in the game. If fights are overly long in their current patch, nerfing all healing indiscriminately isn’t a reasonable way to solve the problem as it has far reaching consequences that go well beyond fight length and trickle down to almost every match up in the game. Honestly, I’m skeptical that the fights in OW2 were actually lasting that long. In OW1 4v4 modes and 5v5 fights where both teams have traded aren’t all that long, and in the previous show match we didn’t see overly long fights. I can understand that without an off tank, and with Moira/Bap/Ana on both teams, things could drag on, but I don’t understand the path from there to nerfing Zen’s healing.

The second is that they put a patch in the OWL finals in which supports were clearly too ineffective and the game was a chaotic brawl. They chose that patch for public viewing. It’s indicative of the direction in which they want the game to go.

The third is that without any positive news about the support role, without anything new to get excited about in that role, all we’re left with are the negatives, and it’s disheartening.

I love Overwatch. I’ve played it for thousands and thousands of hours. The idea that I may not love (much less not even like) Overwatch 2 was inconceivable to me a few months back, but I’m afraid that this is where we’re heading.

I love playing support. Mercy is my favorite in that role. When I watched the fame, none of the supports were doing all that well, and Mercy was one of the worst. What I saw was - a healing nerf to 50 hps (a number she’s never worked with), on top of that - a global healing nerf of 25% putting her near Zenyatta levels of healing, on top of that - faster moving dps in maps built to enable faster moving dps to create a state of constant small skirmishing, on top of that - a passive that Mercy doesn’t even benefit from, on top of that - an admission from the pros that the game felt more like a Deathmatch, that supports felt bad to play, and that Mercy was trash.

This was hardly heartening news, and there’s nothing to soften the blow. No new support heroes teased, no new support abilities teased, no reimagining of what the support role is. We were essentially told that it would be more of the same, but weaker. It’s just difficult to feel optimistic or excited.

An update with either something exciting or an acknowledgement that the role is currently not playing how it should be, but that they are working on it, would be much appreciated.


I think developers themselves are just testing how to properly nerf healing, so not sure what they would even say… The OWL version won’t make it to the release tho (likely)

it has two params: (x,t)
x = amount of base healing debuff (%)
t = time out-of-combat (s, ooc)

u can fiddle with which effects this applies to, and what ooc actually means
(and if it has distance params like far from team etc.)

but there are almost surely values above zero for which (x,t) is FINE
if not entirely good for the game

crank them up too much and u basically have a bifurcation in gameflow.
the bifurcation is a kind of min/max where u would rather just group up more and basically always have the debuff up but essentially leverage the value-added group proximity (2 healers, exposure to more effects), (MAX). the other edge case is it could promote almost never grouping up, and basically always living off the land, taking and winning (losing) duels, (MIN).

personally i’d like to see values of (x,t) that promote solo/duo play, where u aren’t punished for taking duels away from the heard, can fall back and get patched up relatively quickly (enough to maintain flank pressure), and aren’t expected to reset/regroup for all-in scripts.

they should be experimenting with lower (x,t) a lot more.
but non-zero values.
certainly try other values before scrapping the idea
just because some pros, who’s entire life will be turned upside down by even the smallest changes, didn’t like the concept.

Ok so compensate us in some way. Nerfing healing across the board feels really bad.

If you want to bring us closer to a “regular” DPS we need buffs in our damage.

Give Ana the ability to headshot, make mercy weapon swap instant with a hitscan.

The design philosophy can’t just be that team fights are taking too long because you reduced tanks because you couldn’t make them fun so you just eliminated one of them.

Supports will be the next on the chopping block because if they are anything close to what we saw in that pvp footage, you’re going to lose most of your support players and none of your new players are going to want to play it either.


As long as ana can still 2 shot with a nade and kill a 200 hp target ill be fine

suppose it were “nerfed across the board”.

would u rather it be biased to grouped-up formations? like sustained vs. burst top ups when you’re all clumped up?

or would u rather it be biased to spread-out flanker/duelist formations? whether that’s sustained or burst.

that’s the first gate.

the second is how much skill that should take, and biasing the single target vs. aoe vs. sustain vs. burst (prob a hero select thing).

Most tank players don’t have a strategic bone in their body. All they want to do is hold W and plow through the entire enemy team uncontested.

I don’t think one little comment is enough to address this though. I am concerned enough about the direction of supports, and it seems like a lot of other people are too, that I think having a dev talk about what their overall plan for supports is would be a good idea. It feels like there’s no theoretical way to impact the fight as a support with their current build. They are nerfing healing, which would be more ok if they buffed utility, but they aren’t buffing utility. In fact, they are doing the opposite. Brig’s stun is gone and Ana’s sleep dart CD was increased. I have also seen a lot of concern about flankers not being kept in check since support utility is being removed. This is also something I would like them to address. What’s the plan for keeping mobile heroes from wrecking the backline with no CC and no peel from a second tank?


Here’s the obvious problem with previewing anything, especially after waiting too long for updates… they probably haven’t fleshed it all out and aren’t ready to give updates on that subject.

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Then why would people play OW instead of any number of other fps games? While I’m not opposed to turning supports into dps so they can duel and wreck people(which is the only logical answer if you’ve removed their agency as healers), I have to wonder why we would continue playing this game when plenty of others do the same thing.

Nobody is going to play a support that isn’t worth healing with in combat, they’re going to play a dps. If everyone is a dps, why did we bother with RQ, and why are we playing this game instead of any number of others? It feels like they’re looking at this as a game to emphasize frags and dps, but that’s not really what makes OW an interesting game. Could just go play Quake for that.


Would get more vocal about the fact but new apartment and less coworkers at work has really been exhausting.

that’s an overshoot of what i’m suggesting.

ow/ow2 is a hero-shooter where u personify the hero through it’s kit.
u want heroes to have heterogenous kits, not be homogenous by role archetypes. u want them to have a degree of agency, self-expression, and personal skill-differentiation. teamwork and teamplay needs to happen, just not like it does in current 222 or goats. for that u need more micro, less all-in ult scripts and iwin hero selects aka macro. for that u need more of the map used at once, less of this fallback regroup try try again.

so ppl coming from other games should be looking at ow/ow2 if they want to outplay ppl via a combination of the above, rather than the current run-and-gun, loot-and-shoot, spray-and-prey, sneak-and-peek titles on the market.

think ow but less clump and more lanes like classic ow (less buffered than goats/222, faster ttk, more apm tempo, etc) akin to tdm/qpc where there are objectives and teamwork but you better be on your a-game in terms of micro-mechanics. no more flinging yourself away from a 1hp mcree screaming for peels. no more group up with me shielding for days spamming some ults and expecting results.

to stay on topic, supports play a role in this by attenuating mistakes in terms of burst or sustain ttk. tanks do the same by attenuating positional mistakes and sharpening zonal punish. we need support role to be less healbot.

think of current main sup being dialed back to almost offsup levels of output, and current offsup dialed back to hybrid/utility dps levels of healing output and ttk buffering. meanwhile the current dps needs to not scale with value via mindless poke behind tank with pocket heals until ult. they need to work for parts of the map and live off the land more. it’s nowhere near cod but it’s not scripted clumpwatch which is what most 222 metas gave us.

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The medic in TF2 has a ramping healing buff that works the same way. Anyone actively being shot receives way less healing than someone who’s been out of combat for a few seconds.

Stacking medics makes them all charge uber slower, too. Almost as if overlapping insane single target healing output on a single player should be punished somehow… :thinking:

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Then maybe it’s time to start looking at the other roles escape abilities that stack up ONTOP of healing. I mean their are starting to be more and more fades, leaps, blinks and other mechanics that stacked with healing extend the fight and in cases make healing irrelevant and allowing characters to work independently.

If dps and tanks had to engage with supports to survive maybe the concept of teamwork may have begun appearing. But give each character abilities to flank on their own - you don’t train and instill the need or want to work with supports. support utility the is tied heavily on how well your team performs and works together. Ana and bap break this mold but characters like mercy for instance are extremely hard to get out of bronze because you have to rely on players being able to fulfill their role requirements and you have no agency.

I mean did hanzo for instance really need a leap that no one asked for? I also takes away from the support role identity when other characters have more utility and can heal themselves. No support can build a wall and heal themselves for instance. Yet when support begins to do as much damage as dps (soldier / bap for instance) that’s not allowed.