Mournflakes

How Mercy Changes Will Affect Overwatch League Stage 2

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Is Overwatch League Stage 2 Ready for Mercy Changes?

In an article I wrote just a few weeks ago, I broke down what we could learn from the first seven days of Overwatch League. One of the first things I mentioned was the fact that Mercy had, by far, the largest play time of all heroes. As we head into week 4, Mercy’s reign as “Queen of the League” has not ended. In fact, her use has increased, with her pick rate extending into 95% of matches, a whopping 8.75% more than the next most-picked hero (D.Va 86%.)  However, today marks the end of the Queen’s reign in competitive play due to her changes in the most recent patch, and questions remain as to how she will affect the league in the future. Here are some of my speculations.

1.       The Mercy changes won’t affect the league until the end of February

No one is sure how patch changes will affect the Overwatch League, but the main talk of the town is that patch changes will cross over between Overwatch League stages. As the league is currently in stage 1 week 4, we will probably see the Mercy/Junkrat patch hitting the league at stage 2 week 1. Stage 2 week 1 will start February 21, so I don’t expect to see the patch hit the league until then.

2.       Zenyatta will become king of Overwatch League supports.

Also something I talked about in my article from week 1, Zenyatta sees a high amount of Overwatch League playing time. In fact, Zenyatta is present in 78% of all Overwatch League play. This percentage currently places Zenyatta as the third-most played hero in the league. Once Mercy has her wings clipped, it is likely that Zen’s play time will only increase, making him the number one picked support in Overwatch League. In my opinion, this change may even push Zenyatta to take the number one spot as the most played hero in Overwatch League compositions. Let’s see if Zen can transcend his way to the top!

3.       Other supports will see a dramatic increase in play time (except Symmetra)

With Mercy falling back down to earth, the void she leaves needs to be filled by other characters. Part of Mercy’s dominance as a support was because other heroes could not match her kit. The other support heroes weren’t broken, Mercy was just super overpowered, and was almost impossible to pass up in league play (thus the 95% play time.) However, now that she stabilized, I imagine that other support heroes will see a dramatic uptick in play time. I think Mercy will still get picked, but I know that Ana, Lucio, and Moira will be way more viable with the Mercy nerf in place. It will be interesting to see who will be the second most picked support, and it’s something that I will be looking into once the patch hits the league.

If I had to guess, I would say that the play time after the nerf will see this distribution of support heroes

From greatest to least:

·         Zenyatta

·         Ana

·         Mercy

·         Lucio

·         Moira

·         Symmetra

What do you think? Will Mercy still be the top picked hero in Overwatch League play? Will Zen be the new top? Will Mercy sink to the bottom of the barrel? Tell us what you think by commenting below!

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Zen will likely be top, but I don't see Ana being second, still too many barriers that limit her healing.

 

Triple Tank/Quad Tank with Lucio Moira will be popular on attacks where you need to overwhelm the enemy, such as Assault or 1st point Hybrid, but not as useful for escort modes or KotH modes.  Dive will likely be most popular on Hybrid/Escort and KotH with Lucio/Moira and Zen.

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3 hours ago, Atamisk said:

Zen will likely be top, but I don't see Ana being second, still too many barriers that limit her healing.

 

Triple Tank/Quad Tank with Lucio Moira will be popular on attacks where you need to overwhelm the enemy, such as Assault or 1st point Hybrid, but not as useful for escort modes or KotH modes.  Dive will likely be most popular on Hybrid/Escort and KotH with Lucio/Moira and Zen.

Yeah, I see where you are coming from. One of the main reasons I'm thinking Ana will have such a boost in play is her ultimate. Her ultimate mixed with Winston Genji or D.Va can put out some massive damage in clutch situations.

However, Lucio does have the speed to put dive compositions in position, and is arguably more viable throughout a whole match due to his kit.

I am hard pressed to think Moira will see heavy action. Her damage abilities are not good for professional play, and her ultimate can be interrupted by a lot of hero abilities. I think she will need a damage buff to be viable in OL. We will see though, and I'm excited to watch what happens!

 

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8 hours ago, Mournflakes said:

Yeah, I see where you are coming from. One of the main reasons I'm thinking Ana will have such a boost in play is her ultimate. Her ultimate mixed with Winston Genji or D.Va can put out some massive damage in clutch situations.

However, Lucio does have the speed to put dive compositions in position, and is arguably more viable throughout a whole match due to his kit.

I am hard pressed to think Moira will see heavy action. Her damage abilities are not good for professional play, and her ultimate can be interrupted by a lot of hero abilities. I think she will need a damage buff to be viable in OL. We will see though, and I'm excited to watch what happens!

 

Definitely don't think Moira needs any changes. I think it's pretty evident what the support meta is going to be after Mercy gets knocked down a peg or too. I also think that Mercy isn't dead. A resurrect is still insanely powerful ability and if it goes off with the proper coordination that pro teams have its able to swing. In the situations where Mercy isn't played, you can already see that the double support team was Moira and Lucio for some insane group healing, we saw it peak through a few times but eventually switch due to not being able to combat Mercy. Zenyatta will still remain a very decent support but Moira definitely doesn't need any change. The first ever balanced new hero this game has seen, let's keep it that way.

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3 hours ago, Slam said:

I like zen but I hate how much I need to be at the back when I play him :(

Yeah, Zen is a great hero imo, but he can be heavily team dependent and he has to be very careul about positioning. 

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2 hours ago, leapingshadow said:

Definitely don't think Moira needs any changes. I think it's pretty evident what the support meta is going to be after Mercy gets knocked down a peg or too. I also think that Mercy isn't dead. A resurrect is still insanely powerful ability and if it goes off with the proper coordination that pro teams have its able to swing. In the situations where Mercy isn't played, you can already see that the double support team was Moira and Lucio for some insane group healing, we saw it peak through a few times but eventually switch due to not being able to combat Mercy. Zenyatta will still remain a very decent support but Moira definitely doesn't need any change. The first ever balanced new hero this game has seen, let's keep it that way.

Great insight!

I definitely agree that Mercy is not dead. I put her at the third most played support because I can see her Resurrect still being really strong in professional play. 

I feel like I should clarify my position on Moira. I think Moria is fine as is. I don't think she is broken or under-powered, I just think her play style and utility doesn't fit with professional play as well as some other support heroes. In regards to her damage, I was saying that a small tweak that increases her damage would make her more viable in Overwatch League. Maybe even a change to her Decay Orb where D.Va slowly kills the orb with her shield, rather than deleting it, would increase her viability. I think one of those two changes is not necessary, but would make her viability increase in professional play. At this time, Moira is the lowest used support hero in Overwatch League (barring Symmetra.) Lucio is the third most used, Ana is the fourth. I guess since Lucio and Ana are above Moira play time now (even in Mercy meta,) that leads me to think she won't be utilized that much when the patch hits.

That, or Ana and Lucio's play times at the moment are dependent on stopping Mercy, and with her gone, Moira will be utilized more. That could be the case! If anything, I'm just excited to see more support heroes become viable again :) 

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40 minutes ago, Mournflakes said:

Great insight!

I definitely agree that Mercy is not dead. I put her at the third most played support because I can see her Resurrect still being really strong in professional play. 

I feel like I should clarify my position on Moira. I think Moria is fine as is. I don't think she is broken or under-powered, I just think her play style and utility doesn't fit with professional play as well as some other support heroes. In regards to her damage, I was saying that a small tweak that increases her damage would make her more viable in Overwatch League. Maybe even a change to her Decay Orb where D.Va slowly kills the orb with her shield, rather than deleting it, would increase her viability. I think one of those two changes is not necessary, but would make her viability increase in professional play. At this time, Moira is the lowest used support hero in Overwatch League (barring Symmetra.) Lucio is the third most used, Ana is the fourth. I guess since Lucio and Ana are above Moira play time now (even in Mercy meta,) that leads me to think she won't be utilized that much when the patch hits.

That, or Ana and Lucio's play times at the moment are dependent on stopping Mercy, and with her gone, Moira will be utilized more. That could be the case! If anything, I'm just excited to see more support heroes become viable again :) 

I think the case with Moira is just the same case as with a lot of heroes in Overwatch. They just need more heroes that they synergise with and counter which will happen over time.

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50 minutes ago, leapingshadow said:

I think the case with Moira is just the same case as with a lot of heroes in Overwatch. They just need more heroes that they synergise with and counter which will happen over time.

Very excellent point. It will be interesting to see what this new hero brings! 

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