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Published: January 26, 2023

Written by: Isabella Aslam

  • Blizzard released Overwatch 2’s latest patch that focused around nerfing several heroes
  • Kiriko received just one but still important nerf to her Healing Ofuda
  • Despite being small, it’s hoped this change will change the way Kiriko is being played

With their latest patch, Overwatch 2 devs hope they will incentivize players to use Kiriko more as a damage dealer than a healer.

Kiriko Receives a Nerf

Overwatch 2 has been having some serious balancing issues ever since its launch and Blizzard has not been fixing these problems at a fast enough rate. Fans have been pestering Blizzard for faster balance patches and it seems that the company has finally delivered. One of the heroes that were in need of large amounts of tweaking was Kiriko, who was implemented alongside Overwatch 2’s launch, and it seems her support reign might be coming to an end.

The biggest change the hero received in the game’s latest patch comes to her Healing Ofuda. Her healing ability’s cooldown went from 0.85 to one second. Although this doesn’t seem like a big change, Overwatch 2 is a game where tens of a second could mean the difference between victory or defeat, so this nerf will impact the way Kiriko is played. 

The change was needed because Kiriko’s very solid damage output from her Kunai paired with the speed from her healing ability made her the perfect asset to have. With a solid pick rate of 5.49%, Kiriko was one of the top three most-picked heroes during Overwatch 2’s Season 2, second only to Mercy and Ana, according to OverBuff

How Will This Change Kiriko’s Playstile?

It seems the developers wanted Kiriko to be more of a damage dealer than she actually was during Season 2. Players tended to use her healing abilities a lot more. With the recent nerf, the devs want to incentivize players to pay less attention to her healing, and more to her other skills. Considering Kiriko’s teleport hasn’t been changed or removed, she’ll still be a good character for a quick kill in a sneakier spot.

“Despite Kiriko’s healing projectiles being slow-moving and single target, her average healing output per match is higher than we’d like. We’ve seen players tend to get overly focused on maximizing her healing potential and only use primary fire for extended periods of time,” the Blizzard devs write in the official patch notes.

“Rather than reduce the amount of healing per projectile, which may lead to feeling locked into focusing on primary fire even more, we’re increasing the recovery time before she can start firing the Healing Ofuda. Increasing recovery times opens the opportunity to weave in secondary fire Kunai more freely.”Kiriko was not the only hero to receive change in Overwatch 2’s latest patch. That list also extends to Orisa, Sojourn, but it also includes Roadhog, for whom the Blizzard has been working on a big nerf since last month.

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