The Newest Patch
On January 24th, Overwatch live servers received its newest patch. Patch 22.214.171.124 has angered many players due to the Reaper buff, which increased his life steal from 30% to 50%. While this seems like an insignificant change, it has made him much stronger than he previously was. Due to this buff, Reaper is now able to heal more of his health pool with the more damage he deals.
Reaper Vs. Tanks
As stated by the developers, “The added life steal is particularly effective against tanks, as they tend to do less damage than other heroes, and also take more damage from his Hellfire Shotguns due to their larger hit volumes.”
Tanks, especially those with less mobility, are increasingly weak to Reaper’s high damage attacks. Roadhog, Zarya, and Orisa are unable to retreat once a Reaper has entered into their space. The player will survive if he has the help of the rest of the team. The support has to focus on healing the tank while the DPS need to attack the Reaper. The tank player will die without their help. Other tanks, like Winston or D.Va, will be able to escape his barrage of damage only if their movement abilities are off cooldown. If cooldown is still active, they will also be picked off.
Reaper’s buff overpowers other characters as well. Support players are much less likely to win a one versus one when it comes to the new Reaper. Ideally, support players should not face off against a Reaper, but when it does occur they should have a chance at leaving the exchange with their health pools intact. Because of his buff, Reaper can out heal a support character. Combining this with the max 140 damage per shot done by the Hellfire Shotguns results in one overpowered DPS character. Luckily, a competent Widowmaker or Soldier 76 should be able to take down this pesky foe. Character’s with a range greater than Reaper’s shotguns should have no problem beating him in a fight, assuming they know how to aim.
What’s Next for our Wraith Form Friend?
Hopefully, we’ll see a Reaper nerf shortly. I don’t want to see him lose any viability as a character, but even knocking his life steal down to 40% could make him more balanced. Players want to be able to play the game again without worrying about being two shot by a Reaper. Tank mains want to be able to play tanks again. I’d also like for my team to protect their healers from Reaper’s sneaky ways. Maybe one day we’ll all get the teamwork we deserve.