Using Data Analysis to Understand Competitive Overwatch
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March 16, 2017
Overwatch Hero Meta Report: Console (Season 4 Week 2)
This week continues to show the evolving meta of Overwatch. Bastion continues to be the story, as his passive has not yet received the nerf yet. While always strong on Console, Mercy has seen a slight bump in usage since her ultimate buff and the rework of Bastion's kit. While the "Omnic crisis" continues for now, I expect lots of shake up on the next patch, with the introduction of Orisa and lots of hero buffs and nerfs.
As always, hope you enjoy this report!
New! Underneath each tier's "Hero Tier List" we now list the heroes whose usage changed the most since last week's report.
this report is: A report and tier list of Overwatch hero usage and
player trends across competitive ladder tiers (Grandmaster ->
Bronze), covering usage for Week 2 Season 4 (a single week of S4).
divided into tiers by their current SR at time of data capture.We want
to answer the questions "What are people playing at each tier? What are
the big changes from the prior week?".
this report is not: We do not report any data from professional or
Esports tournaments, only competitive ladder within the game of
above chart breaks down average usage of a hero by tier, grouped into
the same categories (Offense, Defense, Tank, Support) as found in the
game. Generally speaking, higher tiers prefer higher skill cap
characters that can reward them for their play, while lower tiers prefer heroes that are easier to learn and be productive with.
Let's take a deeper look at each hero category:
Offensive heroes seeing play are being heavily influenced by dive compositions. Soldier continues to see strong usage, is the most picked offensive hero across all tiers. With Mercy seeing very heavy usage, Pharah's popularity on competitive ladder is also growing. Strong usage of Pharah, along with Genji and Tracer at higher tiers, demonstrate that the meta has shifted to dive and hybrid team compositions. As a continuing trend, Sombra and Reaper continue to be extremely niche picks. There are a number of heroes at the moment that seem to be preferable to Reaper, including Soldier and Roadhog. With a buff to Sombra's translocator expected to be coming soon, she may finally start seeing more play in the near future, though time will tell.
Defense heroes usage continue to reflect a much stronger Bastion, who still has not received the "ironclad" passive nerf. Bastion is the most popular Defensive hero, whose usage is shockingly higher than every offensive hero except Soldier (Pharah at Grandmaster the lone exception). Bastion has become the 6th to 8th most played hero in competitive Overwatch on console. Junkrat continues to be an interesting anomaly who is popular at low tiers; it will be interesting to see if the
minor buffs on the PTR result in additional play. Mei is the only other standout worth mentioning; despite her relatively high skill cap, she is played more often at lower tiers (similar to Junkrat). Note that Hanzo, Mei, and Torb continue to be strong on some modes such as Assault.
Tanks continue to be a big part of the meta at all tiers of play. Generally speaking, Reinhardt continues
to be the most popular tank and the foundation of most team
compositions. D.Va continues to exhibit a sharp fall off in popularity at higher tiers; her usage has dropped nearly 20% from Season 3 across all tiers. Roadhog and Zarya continue to be the preferred off-tanks at mid to higher tiers; Zarya's with her projected shield bubbles and ult highly valuable, while Roadhog's DPS has increased from his damage buffs. Winston continues to see very little play, despite flankers and squishies such as Genji and Mercy seeing lots of play. With a large shield cooldown buff on the horizon, we may see more Winston in weeks to come.
Support usage continues to shift towards Mercy, despite her being traditionally strong on console. Mercy synergizes especially well with two very popular current DPS heroes: Pharah and Bastion. Lucio continues to be solid pick with his aura healing and speed boost being very strong. Ana and Zenyatta remains
somewhat popular heroes, with Ana's reliance on precise aim and Zenyattas limited fit in team compositions limiting their popularity. Simply put, with Mercy and Lucio being so strong on Console, there is less room for other support heroes to be picked. Symmetra remains a niche pick, though her primary fire and ultimate ability remains strong.