Overwatch has 25 playable heroes. Overwatch has 5 support heroes. Overwatch has 4 support heroes capable of healing. Overwatch has 1 pure healer. The game’s sole pure healer has a near 100% pick rate and is widely considered to be considerably overpowered.
A recent rework intended to solve this instead saw her return even more potent. While it’s clear that Mercy needs some rebalancing, that isn’t the only thing needed – Mercy needs an alternative. She needs competition.
Take the other three heroes capable of healing.
Lúcio has minimal healing output and is considered useful for his mobility and other buffs, with healing being a minor element of his playstyle. He’s nice to have around, but he isn’t the hero you’d rely on to keep the team alive in a tough fight. Zenyatta, though placed in the support class, is more of a damage dealer than a healer in practice, with healing once again being forced into a secondary position.
Ana is really the only other viable alternative, but even she balances healing with damage, and a recent nerf didn’t do her any favors. Her burst heals can come in handy in many a situation, but overall it’s minor compared to the insane healing output that Mercy brings to the battlefield.
Currently, between her rapid resurrects, insanely effective Valkyrie ultimate and massive healing output, Mercy is the only truly viable healer in the grand scheme of things.
The new Mercy build, which was introduced a month ago to solve issues her Resurrect ultimate were causing, has become a rather sizeable controversy in the game with the community fighting among itself.
Many defend the new skillset as allowing Mercy players to be more dynamic and active, while many deride it for being viciously overpowered. Basically, Mercy is great to play as, and abysmal to play against.
However, this issue isn’t one that can be fully solved just by whipping this one hero into shape. With there being six defense heroes, six tank heroes, and eight offense heroes, the five supports (of which only four are healers) are very much in a minority. All five of them were launch heroes, too. With such a large roster, having only a single pure healer seems off.
Healing has always been considered a crucial element of any Overwatch strategy, and success without it is nigh impossible.
This is part of why the new Mercy build is considered to be a must-pick on both casual and profession levels. If there would be another pure healer who would have similar raw healing output but another, less controversial skillset without any resurrection abilities, you’d have a viable alternative healer.
Having at least one more pure healer would benefit the game in multiple ways.
Beyond the obvious and basic benefits of “yay, new hero!”, adding a second viable pure healer would make things more varied in the game’s landscape, possibly curbing the nigh constant Mercy picks and allowing new strategies to arise.
The problem with allowing one given meta to dominate for too long is that players will get bored, and having a characters who is present in every single match compares.
While there isn’t anything that has been announced and we’re waiting for, anticipation fills the fans as we eagerly await who the next hero could be. Whether the character will fill in a story hole, or be an entirely new creation is anyones guess. But we’re sure hoping that whatever the hero turns out to be, it will be a pure healer.