Overwatch 2’s Lifeweaver “should be good,” Blizzard says, pointing to the stats underpinning the newest Overwatch 2 character. But the simple truth is that he isn’t; his win rate is struggling and many support players just aren’t picking him. Overwatch 2 game director Aaron Keller thinks he’s found the answer, and it’s that there’s just not an appealing reason to pick up Lifeweaver in the multiplayer game.
Despite a recent overhaul to Lifeweaver abilities that reworked his controls and buffed his overall potency, he’s still having a tough time out there. Lifeweaver’s win rate has gone up, Keller says, but only to “around 45%” at low skill tiers and quickly dropping off at higher skill ratings. Despite that, he claims that the new-look Lifeweaver provides “a great base to build off of.”
Healing-wise, Lifeweaver’s output is “one of the highest in the game,” which Keller says “aligns with our vision with the hero, and we’re happy with.” Alongside this, he adds, “Lifeweaver has one of the lowest, if not the lowest, death rates for support heroes” despite his rather chunky hitbox meaning “he is still taking a consistent amount of damage – in the middle to upper range of other supports.”
“That should be good, right?” It’s not. While it’s easy to point at high healing output and feel like a successful support, the fact of the matter is that Lifeweaver’s healing is high because he really doesn’t have a lot else to do. In order to keep his team alive, he needs to be constantly pumping out healing, and unlike heroes such as Baptiste and Ana he can’t easily deal damage to enemies at the same time.
This often means he’s found hanging at the very back of the battlefield, tossing out heals and keeping an eye out for teammates he needs to pull to safety, which keeps his death rate lower (especially at lower tiers, where players are less inclined to dive into the backline) despite getting easily pinged from range. His Life Grip and Petal Platform offer some utility, but they’re very reactive abilities; heroes traditionally excel much more when they can offer proactive moves.
Keller admits as such: “Life Grip and Petal Platform both can be game-changing abilities, but they’re also inconsistent… Many times they are waiting to be used or just not being used well, either by Lifeweaver or his team.” As such, he lands on the real question, asking, “what’s a strong incentive for swapping to Lifeweaver?” Currently, while his tools are fun enough, they don’t let you enable your team in the way that many other supports do; I don’t ever look at my team and think, “Lifeweaver will really make this comp pop off.”
This, then, is Blizzard’s goal. While increased damage buffs and a smaller hitbox are likely still on the cards, Keller says that “ultimately we’ll have changes targeted at further pronouncing Lifeweaver’s strengths and clearly defining his role on your team. This could be leaning harder into his healing effectiveness through a new passive or bringing additional benefits to some of his utility-focused abilities.”
These upgrades are on the cards for season five, so it’ll be a while yet before we see any more changes. In the meantime, Overwatch League caster and former pro player Jake ‘Jake’ Lyon says we shouldn’t expect to see any of him at the top level (outside of the occasional troll pick), and it’s likely to be the same story elsewhere. For now, then, the numbers don’t lie, and they spell disaster for Lifeweaver in season four.
Our Overwatch 2 tier list should give you plenty of better picks in the meantime as Overwatch 2 season 4 rolls on. Alternatively, you can always browse the best FPS games on PC for plenty more satisfying shooters while you wait for the Thai healer to find his spot.