When Ana stepped on the scene in Overwatch , her impact was felt immediately. Players stuck playing either Lucio or Zenyatta suddenly had another competitive support to add to their tool kit. Buffing up tanks and healing from afar made Ana one of the best heroes in the game, one who is still being played months after her release.
Sombra, on the other hand, has barely made a dent in the Overwatch community. Most of the time, if you need a sneaky skirmisher to run around and pick up squishy targets, you’d rather have Tracer on your team. Being able to go invisible and sneak up behind a McCree using “high noon” is fantastic, but being unable to kill him in one clip isn't. Sombra feels like a weak hero and Blizzard still hasn’t buffed her, why is that?
Tanks, Tanks Everywhere!
When Ana first showed up in Overwatch , she seemed like a perfect fit. The tanks, like Roadhog and Reinhardt that had been dominating the metagame got a little bit of an extra punch. Dropping a Nano Boost on a Roadhog who’s going hog wild or a Reinhardt happily swinging his hammer at anything with a face can quickly turn the tides of a large-scale skirmish.
Sleep darts can take out backline aggressors, like Genji, who might be aiming to pick off your supports. Ana was like the perfect puzzle piece for Overwatch’s tank meta; she gave tanks the thing they were missing, damage and even more sustain. Sombra is more like a wet rag, tanks are her worst enemy. The hacker wants to run around in stealth, killing an enemy and then retreating back with her teleporter; she loves to hit and run. When a big tank who can take two or three submachine gun clips to the face blocks her path, there isn’t much that can be done.
On the PTR, there are nerfs to Overtwatch’s two biggest tanks, D.Va and Roadhog and lower damage on Ana’s Biotic Grenade. Ana’s time as the best support in Overwatch might just be coming to an end. If tanks become weaker, it will put more focus on DPS heroes. With squishier heroes walking around, Sombra might finally be able to kill some stuff before she get’s taken down.
How To Buff Sombra
Buffing a hero that seems weak because of a game’s meta is a signal for disaster. Games like League of Legends tend to fight the problem of OP characters by nerfing stronger ones or buffing weaker ones. All that does is allow unnerfed champions who might have gone unnoticed for a while to swim back up to the surface, like Ziggs in the bot lane. Overwatch has a fraction of the playable heroes/champions that LoL does, so the meta would become even more stale.
Reddit user Meldorn has a simple fix for Sombra. Make the hacker deal more damage to Hacked targets.
Alongside those nerfs on the PTR, Sombra actually got a buff. Blizzard lowered the time she needs to hack an enemy to .8 seconds. If Sombra spends the time needed to hack an enemy before taking them out, all it does is level the playing field. Roadhog might not be able to use his hook, but Sombra has no offensive abilities on her own, all a Hack does is create a left click vs. left click fight.
Sombra isn’t weak mechanically. Pro players have been using her in competitive games, like Complexity in the NGE Winter Premiere. Once the meta shifts away from burly tanks, she might become a must-have hero in your games too.