Another day, another discussion about nerfing in Overwatch. This time, the hero in question is the sniper, Widowmaker.
Game Director Jeff Kaplan responded to some complaints on the Battle.net forums with a rather unspecific replay. Here’s exactly what he said.
Widowmaker is on our radar. We are discussing her. We have some internal experiments going to see if we can keep her viable while lowering the frustration threshold a little bit. Right now, this is just exploration. If something more comes of it, we’ll let you know.
What are users complaining about? The forum post mentions her powerful SMG, bodyshots that result in big damage, a quiet ultimate and her shots recharging to quickly. All of that likely falls under what Kaplan calls “the frustration threshold.”
The only thing that really upsets me about Widowmaker has to do with a combination of her precision and each heroes head hitbox. What do I mean? Each hero has a hitbox that actually extends a bit beyond the action model of their head. That is, if you were to shoot an empty space right next to a hero’s head, you’ll still get a headshot because of the hitbox. This is especially frustrating when it comes to both Widowmaker and Hanzo, the two snipers in the game. If you hide behind a wall or in other cover, you can still be shot without being visible thanks to the hitbox size.
Cover, in my opinion, should reduce the size of the hitbox. It makes sense when everything’s frantic and characters are zipping about in open space, but if I actively take cover in a firefight, I shouldn’t be punished by my invisible yet impossibly large hitbox.
Should Widowmaker be altered in other ways? Her ultimate call out could be louder, I guess, but I’m fine with her beyond that.