Back in March, Blizzard introduced a hero pick/ban system for Overwatch’s competitive mode. The catch, however, is that while the mode bans certain heroes, it was Blizzard that was doing the choosing.
This led to a lot of pro-level players condemning the new competitive system. While it may have made the Overwatch League regular season meta a lot more diverse, it also increased the difficulty of coaching and playing professional Overwatch, damaging the sustainability of the league itself.
How would you like it if you had to get stressed out lost over a new and shifting meta every week?
Ive never been more frustrated with the community and their separation from the competitive scene than when I read the reddit thread about how hero pools are great
Hero pools are the worst thing ever to happen to OW. Everyone I've talked to hates them, they make our lives hell
— Dream (@DreamOverwatch) May 12, 2020
— AVRL (@imAVRL) May 12, 2020
Bottom line: no one asked for hero pools at all, especially the pros and competitive players who are keeping the scene alive. As such, the Blizzard folks are removing the feature from competitive mode “indefinitely”.
“We initially implemented Hero Pools to address issues with stagnating metas and to keep match-ups exciting and fresh. However, we’ve found that the introduction of Experimental Card and increased hero balance updates have helped us work towards a healthy, changing meta in Competitive Play without needing to disable heroes.”
However, Hero Pools are not departing from Overwatch League. Each selection of heroes will now last two weeks instead of one, and the feature will be disabled during tournaments as well as the week before each tournament. At the very least, Blizzard is listening.