‘Overwatch 2’ Bringing Passive Self-Heal To Every Hero, Including Tank And DPS

Hero tweaks are part and parcel of the Overwatch 2 ecosystem, but the upcoming season’s changes might be the game’s biggest shakeup to date — barring the leap to a five-versus-five play format. Blizzard is rolling out passive self-healing to all heroes in Season 9 for the first time, in hopes of taking some pressure off support players to keep the team alive.

“In Season 9, both Tank and Damage heroes will get a modified, tuned-down version of the Support self-healing passive,” reads the announcement. This should give non-Support players more options in terms of sustaining themselves.”

“It should also take some of the pressure off Support players to keep everyone alive since individual players now have more control of their own health pool,” it added, acknowledging that the update will impact how the game is played, and shift the balance between the power of a team and the power of an individual hero or player.

The change, intended to improve Overwatch 2‘s “individual and team-focused gameplay to meet the needs of our core audience,” has drawn confusion and backlash from the community. The common argument is how this overhaul would render some characters useless, especially Supports, as they no longer need to focus on healing, and are instead expected to deal damage.

The below reaction sums everything up rather aptly:

In wake of the response, game director Aaron Keller has stepped in with further clarification, stating that it was “a mistake to talk about this lone change out of context.” “It’s one part of a much larger set of changes coming to the game in [Season 9],” highlighted Keller on X / Twitter.

“Internally we’re talking about, and targeting some of these changes at damage spikiness in game, the role of DPS in securing kills, and the strength of healing. It was a mistake to talk about this lone change out of context, since [it is] a part of a much bigger set coming to Season 9.”

Season 9 is expected to arrive in Overwatch 2 in February 2024, with no concrete release date set just yet. It remains to be seen if the update will be able to strike the right balance between teamwork and solo play, but fans can, at the very least, gear up for upcoming content in the pipeline, including three new heroes, a new game mode, and more cross-brand collaborations.

“When I look at the future of Overwatch, a year or two out, I don’t see the exact same game that we’re playing now, but with a few more heroes and maps added to it,” Keller said. “The game should always evolve with new systems and features that serve our players.”