Hero Tier and Meta Report: OWL Stage 3
Below is both the Week 5 hero tier listing, and the Stage 3 listing below that for more data fun.
S Tier (≥95% Usage Rate): D.Va (97.05%)
Tier 1 (≥80% Usage Rate): Mercy (92.02%), Zenyatta (82.69%)
Tier 2 (≥50% Usage Rate): Winston (77.63%), Tracer (74.54%)
Tier 3 (≥20% Usage Rate): Widowmaker (49.77%), Genji (29.39%)
Tier 4 (≥5% Usage Rate): Roadhog (16.22%), Orisa (15.79%), Junkrat (13.10%), Lucio (7.97%), Moira (7.38%), McCree (6.90%)
Tier 5 (<5% Usage Rate): Pharah (4.85%), Reinhardt (4.71%), Soldier: 76 (3.03%), Sombra (2.77%), Zarya (1.82%), Reaper (1.74%), Bastion (1.44%), Ana (1.38%), Hanzo (1.21%), Mei (0.92%) Torbjorn (0.01%), Doomfist (0.01%), Symmetra (0%).
Week 5 Discussion
Week 5 was the week where teams stuck to what works, having the smallest diversity in the hero pool for the entire stage. This week saw only seven heroes in the top 80% of playtime, whereas the average is eight to ten. What does this mean? Is this much different from normal? Read on.
Stage 3 Overview
S Tier (≥95% Usage Rate): D.Va (95.61%)
Tier 1 (≥80% Usage Rate): Mercy (90.10%), Zenyatta (81.02%)
Tier 2 (≥50% Usage Rate): Winston (77.40%), Tracer (71.45%)
Tier 3 (≥20% Usage Rate): Widowmaker (42.08%), Junkrat (24.35%), Genji (24.15%)
Tier 4 (≥5% Usage Rate): Orisa (18.18%), Roadhog (15.85%), Lucio (11.36%), Moira (9.21%), Sombra (8.89%), McCree (8.56%), Pharah (5.51%)
Tier 5 (<5% Usage Rate): Soldier: 76 (4.82%), Reinhardt (4.07%), Bastion (1.98%), Zarya (1.84%), Ana (1.25%), Reaper (1.20%), Mei (0.89%), Hanzo (0.72%), Doomfist (0.57%), Torbjorn (0.11%), Symmetra (0%).
Stage 3 continued the trend of the dive domination. D.Va, Winston, and Zenyatta have maintained the high use they’ve had for more than a year now. The major difference between then and now is the secondary healer who sees more use. Back then it was Lucio and his speed boost, and now it’s Mercy with her maneuverability, high healing output, and, of course, Resurrect.
Different this stage compared to Stage 2, was the rise of Mercy back at the top of the meta. Week 2 was the first time she beat out Zenyatta, and it was only marginally (85% compared to 81%) so. In the last few weeks of the stage, it was about 9-10% more use (92% for Mercy against Zenyatta’s 83% in Week 5). While her ascension received much hype and discussion when it first happened, these days it’s accepted as the norm and doesn’t get much attention. Unlike Stage 1 when she was last on top, she doesn’t feel completely dominant as she did back then.
As for other supports, Ana only appeared once in a blue moon for some ranged healing, but in most of those cases, Mercy still would have probably been a better option. Lucio is almost exclusively used to give a speed boost at the beginning of Control maps, and is then immediately swapped for Mercy. Moira is only seen on an occasional Control map to team up with Lucio when a team goes for a 3+ tank lineup.
Up Ahead in Stage 4
Next stage brings with it both a new map pool and Overwatch’s newest hero, Brigitte.
Hybrid: King’s Row; Blizzard World
Assault: Horizon Lunar Colony; Hanamura
Control: Oasis; Lijiang Tower
Escort: Dorado; Watchpoint: Gibraltar
Precision Swedish Engineering
Horizon and King’s Row are our best bets to see less dive, at least on defense, much like previous stages. The wild card here is, of course, Brigitte. Some pros feel she’s easy to deal with, and that she doesn’t affect dive too much, and others feel she is a dive breaker. Perhaps the difference in opinion lies in if you’re the player who’s in melee with her.
It’s yet to be seen how Brigitte will affect things in Stage 4, but we know that her nerfed form will not be used for these five weeks. Overwatch League Commissioner Nate Nanzer tweeted a statement saying that most recent patch, a patch that included a nerf to Brigitte’s Shield Bash, along with a number of changes for other heroes including Hanzo’s rework, won’t be used. His reasons are both a bug in that patch for resuming play after a pause on Escort maps, and because teams haven’t had much time to play the new Hanzo.
Does this older patch, with the more punishing Shield Bash, mean we’ll see Brigitte a lot in Stage 4? While it could go either way, I’m going to say no. Other than some niche use, and maybe some play on Control, she’s going to be further down the tier lists with the other supports that aren’t Mercy or Zenyatta. Mercy’s Resurrect and Zenyatta’s Orb of Discord are just too good to pass up, and a short, but frequent, stun, won’t change that much.
What do you think? Will Brigitte see a lot of use in Stage 4? Should Blizzard have gone ahead with the most current patch anyway?
Until next time,
Cover photo credit: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment