UPDATE: First Hero nerfs arriving in a patch dated for this week.
UPDATE #3 19:18 14/06/16
The first balancing patch is now live!
UPDATE #2 15:48 14/06/16
Game director Jeff Kaplan has confirmed that Widowmaker and McCree will be the first Overwatch Heroes to be nerfed in a patch due to be released at some point this week.
Confirmation of the live game’s first balancing patch came on the official Overwatch forums a little earlier on today, with details of the Heroes in question following shortly afterwards.
UPDATE #1 14:44 07/06/2016
McCree has been confirmed as the first Overwatch Hero to be nerfed by game director Jeff Kaplan. The news came in an interview with MetaBomb’s sister site Eurogamer.
“What we’re not crazy about, right now, is the way in which McCree can absolutely shred tanks,” explained Kaplan. “It’s a little too easy, so we want to bring the fan the hammer damage down, so he’s still killing the squishies and the medium strength heroes, but he’s less effective against the tanks.
“If he times everything perfectly and gets every single shot off, he’s got a shot against a tank, but it’s not the instant ‘I win’ button that it is right now.”
As for plans to buff D.Va, the team are still exploring all options before committing to a change, although they are keen to improve the fortunes of this Tank.
“With D. Va, we’re still in exploration mode. There’s a couple of directions we could take her and it’s still unclear which direction we’ll go. Obviously her damage has come into question from a lot of people. You have to be really close to do effective damage with D. Va and we might look at that.
“We might also look at her survivability. A lot of time, D. Va can get herself into situations where she’s a tank and it feels like she should be there, but then she gets knocked out of that mech so quickly. We probably won’t do a bunch of buffs to her damage and her survivability; we’ll probably pick one direction or the other, but right now, we’ve been exploring both.”
There’s no time-frame for the patch, although Kaplan did explain elsewhere in the interview that the developers intend for the patch to arrive simultaenously on PC and console platforms.
Who’s the most overpowered Hero in Overwatch right now? Bastion, with his turrets that rip through advancing enemies like a hot knife through butter? Lucio, perhaps, with his ability to storm friendly forces into battle, then keep them alive for longer?
If either of those two popped instantly into your mind then you’d be wrong, according to a post on the official Overwatch forums last night by the game’s Principal Designer Geoff Goodman. He, rather unexpectedly, has his nerfgun aimed squarely in the direction of McCree.
“I’ve been watching McCree carefully since we’ve released,” he explained in a response to a forum thread requesting that the character’s strengths be toned down a little.
“McCree’s flashbang plays an important role in being a strong option against very fast/agile teams (tracers/genjis/etc). It is also a nice tool to prevent close range devastating abilities and ultimates such as Reaper’s Death Blossom.
“That said, its probably a bit too good at dealing damage to higher health targets such as Tanks and barriers. I don’t have any concrete changes yet, but I’m going to be testing some things internally to see how he plays.”
Goodman later clarified that it wasn’t the Flashbang itself that was the problem, rather the subsequent flurry of damage that comes from McCree’s Fan The Hammer ability. In a separate thread, he also discussed possible improvements to D.Va in the Tank category of Heroes.
“D.Va’s damage is definitely on the lower side, much like Winstons. They are this way for a similar reason: They are both very mobile and hard to kill. Every character in the game has strengths and weaknesses, its part of what makes the teamplay work well.
“That said, I do think the is some room for some D.Va improvements, but these are unlikely to take the shape of increasing her damage output significantly.”
No window for when these changes might take place was given, nor was there any indication of how exactly the values might be tweaked to accomodate these nerfs and buffs. We’ll update this article if we hear any more on the subject.