Massive tank changes coming to Overwatch 2

By Olivia Richman

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Jun 28, 2024

Reading time: 2 min

Tanks are going to see some big changes in Overwatch 2 very soon.

In a recent Director’s Take, Blizzard discussed upcoming hero balances, focused on some game changing updates to tank heroes. This is due to developers seeing a lot of Overwatch 2 players discussing issues with the tank role.

Ever since Season 8 ended, the tank role has been in a “tough spot.” The largest complaint is that tanks don’t feel “tanky” enough, with support heroes often having to focus solely on tanks to keep them alive. This limits gameplay options, since data shows that tanks are dying at a much higher rate than they should be to keep the game balanced.

Said Blizzard: “Since Season 9 almost all heroes in the game have become less tanky. This isn’t all unintended. One of the issues we were addressing at the time was the sheer amount of burst damage and healing available. However, most tanks (excluding Ball, who is roughly the same) moved a lot further than heroes in other roles. Recent changes, like the headshot damage reduction on tanks, had some effect on this, but it’s still under where we’d like it to be.”

What tank changes are coming to Overwatch 2?

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Developers haven’t shared what specific changes are planned for tanks in Overwatch 2. Right now, the team is discussing overall systemic changes or per hero changes — and leaning toward the first. But players should still expect buffs and nerfs to individual tanks as well once larger changes are put in place.

There will be a patch that is targeted at increasing the “tankiness” of many heroes. An example is increasing the health of Reinhardt’s shield, since it’s his shield that makes him tanky and defines his gameplay style.

This patch will be released mid-Season 11 or Season 12.

Season 11 balance changes

The Overwatch 2 team opened up a bit about the balance changes coming in the first few days of Season 11 ahead of the tank patch. This includes:

  • On the tank side there is no standout winner with D.Va, Sigma, Winston, Junker Queen, Reinhardt and Zarya in the upper half. Their win rates are between 50-55%
  • With Damage, Pharah continues to excel at around 58%. Reaper (at 55%) and Mei (at 50%) have risen and Sojourn has dramatically fallen (around 44%)
  • And Supports are relatively stable with Illari being the biggest mover, rising a few percentage points to 55%

For now, this is all we know about the upcoming tank changes. Hopefully the role will become more impactful soon.