Blizzard looking into a buff for Overwatch's Zenyatta | PCGamesN

Blizzard looking into a buff for Overwatch's Zenyatta

Overwatch Zenyatta buff

Zenyatta has a bit of an image problem. He's one of the least popular support characters in Overwatch, and support itself is the least-favoured play type. Players will always have their favourites, no matter how well-balanced a game's roster is, but the sheer rarity of encountering Zenyatta (or Symmetra) in the wild speaks volumes - something's got to give. Game director Jeff Kaplan has tacitly acknowledged 'Yatta's plight, telling the forums that "we're exploring some options right now."

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Here's Kaplan's statement in full, via

"We've been talking about him. We wanted to see how the Widowmaker and McCree balance changes played out before making any changes. We're exploring some options right now. Nothing more to report at this time."

The stats over at Overwatch Tracker paint a clear picture of why Blizzard are looking into it: there's a huge divide between support characters. Everyone's playing Mercy or Lucio, and almost no one is spending time with Zenyatta or Symmetra.

If you've spent any amount of time playing against the 'hard' AI (hey, we all need a safe place to practice unfamiliar characters) you'll know that Zenyatta can be formidable. His "Pass into the iris" line can instil genuine fear. But it's really rare to find any humans who've developed a similar mastery. I've literally never heard or seen a team-mate request someone to change to Zenyatta. It doesn't happen.

We'll be keeping out beady eyes on Kaplan, Zenyatta, and any further balance changes in the near future, and will report any new developments as they happen.

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TsunamiWombat avatarBen Barrett avatarWhiteCrow avatar
TsunamiWombat Avatar
1 Year ago

Zenyatta and Symmetra are both hybrid supports, which is why they have a lower choice rate - they fulfill niche's, niches that aren't necessarily... necessary, in every game.

Zenyatta is a tank buster, and absolutely wonderful if your enemies are beefier - his healing on the other hand, with the exception of his ult, is a secondary after thought. Instead it's about that focused damage and debuff.

Symmetra doesn't even heal, just gives a very small regenerating shield. She provides fragile utility placebles (her turrets, teleporter), and very high close range focus damage.

Both Zenyatta AND Symmetra lack any kind of escape mechanic, unlike Mercy and Lucio, meaning without support back from their team they are easy to focus, isolate, and kill. Essentially, in any pub environment, their value is extremely low because of the lower cooperation ceiling. Where they could shine is tighter knit groups.

I feel as if both might benefit from a change to their right click - some sort of short dash or weak shield ability, rather than what is there now. Zenyatta's charge shot is useless because you can't tag with E while you charge up, and Symmetra's charge shot is strong but so slow it's really only good as suppression fire.

Ben Barrett Avatar
1 Year ago

Agreed all over the place. I wouldn't change Symmetra's right click though, I like it for penetrating Rein shields. I think she should be redefined as a defensive hero, however, as that would help her be picked in better comps.

Making Discord Orb go off when you're right clicking would be a change I'd like to see, actually, along with a small health boost - maybe as little as 25 more shields.

WhiteCrow Avatar
1 Year ago

I really miss playing him. He was my most played during the betas, but he just doesn't make much sense as a pick in most cases. After getting wrecked by that Tracer or Genji for the third time with no support from teammates, you become a hindrance to your team due to lack of positive participation; he becomes dead weight.