Experimental Cards have lead to lazy, effortless balancing

Every balance patch since we’ve started getting experimental cards has been…really boring. Its all small number changes that can easily be done in custom game settings. Instead of looking into giving heroes new abilities or changing how they interact we get microbalancing with tiny numbers, praying that it makes a difference, with the occasional big number change meant to be an actual nerf.

Its pretty dull honestly.


I mean, that’s mostly what the ptr was too

The wacky changes feel less frequent because the more mundane changes are so much more frequent than they used to be since it’s easier to test and implement them than before.


Not sure why this is a problem exactly.


I mean, small frequent balancing is ideal for most situations.

For the more heavy duty stuff, that’s probably gonna need to wait until after OW2 launches.

Since fixing queue times and tank popularity is priority #1 before OW2 launches.


I’d much rather have more-frequent and less-sweeping changes in the game than to have the opposite. Big changes can result in huge new problems, and I don’t think Blizzard wants to get into the habit of “teasing” potential major changes on experimental, only to double-back on them and not go anywhere with it.

I’d also say the state of the game is pretty well balanced for most levels of play, so major changes aren’t really needed. Most characters perform adequately enough or at least retain fun factors about themselves, so there’s little need to try and “fix” them. Adding new abilities or mechanics for the hell of it is a quick way to make more problems than you solve.


Wrong way if they want to fix tank popularity. All tanks should be as powerful as sigma ball before nerfs, with a few nerfs to sig and maybe ball because they were a little too dominant.

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Considering how much the focus is on OW2, I expect the only difference without Experimental Card would just be slower patches.

It’s not like they never put anything bigger on Experimental before. It’s just that they presumably don’t want to put the resources into something that would be done easier or end up irrelevant once OW2 is done.

I agree. In general it’s not “powerful” that’s the issue. It’s “self reliant” that’s needed.

Tanks should be able to exist and participate in duels, without being useless unless they are pocketed by their teammates the entire match.

Generally, this is how I’d get there.
Experimental Mode – Hero Balance January 2021

Balancing was always bad.

The experimentals just highlighted how little the balance team knows about how the game is being played.

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Small number changes can make all the difference in the world. For example, altering McCree’s fire rate by 0.08s. Zero point zero eight seconds seems like a laughably insignificant change on the face of it, but in practice it was a huge deal.

Yeah say that to the potential 2-3 digit amount of bugs that will cause…

These changes are limited to PTR for a good reason. OW’s source code is not good enough to handle even “perfectly designed” abilities, let alone a hasty change of them and/or a good amount of them at the same time.

Especially Sigma should have had a huge overhaul to get rid of his ability to do everything.
Sigma and Brigitte has been the biggest design failures of this game, closely followed by Ball.

And people started calling him Machine Gun Cree!

The game is so interwoven into itself, people thinking they can predict every possible outcome of these seemingly small changes are deluded.

Test and feedback first.

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Yep they had it right with the first experimental that 1 3 2 stuff now its just a lazy preview with small changes that dont do much.

Pretty sure no one would care for a BIG OL patch

This is actually very true. The experimental card was meant to try out new “radical” changes and not for minor balance changes (thats what PTR is for)
I already miss the days of experimental where we saw 2cp changes or trying to make every tank a maintank. Those were actual experiments and not just small balance updates…