Blizzard knows that support players are having a rough go of things in the Overwatch 2 (opens in new tab) beta, acknowledging the class needs to become "more attractive to players."
While a fair few tanks and DPS heroes have had significant overhauls, supports have had their kit largely untouched. It's left the role in a weird place in a 5v5 world. (opens in new tab) While mobile heroes like Moira and Lucio have been faring pretty well in the beta, others like Zenyatta have felt significantly less useful. Then there's Mercy, who was plain broken (opens in new tab) when the beta launched.
Blizzard has already made tweaks between the alpha and beta, like giving support better passive self-healing for increased survivability. "This change improved their overall power and durability, and overall supports are performing well in the beta," the developer wrote in a blog post (opens in new tab). "But we know that balance is only one aspect of what makes a hero fun to play. We have heard clearly that support players feel both tanks and damage players have more new content to enjoy and explore in this beta."
support_feels_bad_in_overwatch_2_and_i_dont_think from r/Overwatch
So what's the overall solution to the current problem? Well, Blizzard seems to think it's a matter of adding more support heroes to the roster. "Longer term, we believe the most effective way to tackle this issue is to add exciting new support heroes to the game, and that is part of our plans," the post continues.
"In the near term, our hero design team is also experimenting with significant, shorter lead time, ideas including new and refreshed abilities for some existing support heroes." Blizzard says some of these changes may potentially happen towards the end of the current beta, but most major changes won't make an appearance until the next test.
While Blizzard itself has acknowledged that support feels a little underbaked compared to Overwatch 2's other roles, the issue has been hotly debated across Reddit and the official forums. There seems to be a pretty clear divide between "git gud healbots (opens in new tab)" and "supports need better survivability (opens in new tab)." I've only had the chance to dip in for a few games myself, but as a Zenyatta main I definitely felt the absence of an off-tank. It's still early days for Overwatch 2 and hopefully, tweaks in future betas will make every role equally fun to play.