Overwatch All Heroes Full Guide by Eesive
Introduction: Who Am I And What Is This Guide?
Hello guys. I go by Lite ingame and have played quite a lot of Overwatch during the closed beta. Chances are you’ve probably seen me around if you played a good bit of the closed beta! I reached level 181, played roughly 1500 matches, and reached Master 3 in ranked (the level nor the matches are even close to the highest, but both are plenty to know all the ins and outs). I played mostly Genji during the beta, but I played with all the heroes extensively enough to hopefully give you all some insight and an edge when you hop into the open beta, and eventually, launch. I will go a little bit into counters, but I’m going to try and stay away from too much of it because very few heroes “hard-counter” another hero. I will try and exclude all obvious information (IE Bastion does a lot of damage! Reinhardt shields his team!) to make hopefully most of what you read worth your while. The guide is mostly for the heroes, but I have thrown in some random and very helpful tips at the end.
I alphabetized them to try and make finding the specific one you might be looking for easier.
- Bastion is all about surprise. He is easily one of the worst, if not the worst hero when you don’t have the element of surprise. After 1 enemy push or even 1 or 2 kills, you need to move. If the other team is good, they will kill you. Bastion isn’t as functional in higher level matches (whether it be in ranked or in tournaments) but he can be helpful as long as you have one thing–surprise.
- Don’t be afraid to run around in recon mode. Running around in recon mode is perfectly acceptable, although you do want to stay in sentry mode whenever possible. You do roughly as much damage as S:76, but have trouble being a huge threat due to your accuracy.
- You will be spammed at. A lot. You will be shot at around corners where they get full damage shots in, and you barely scratch them. Keep this in mind when you’re positioning yourself. You can use this to bait enemies (set up in LoS of where a corner that is covered by your teammates is, this will keep you safe or allow your team to pick up kills.)
- Please, shoot at Reinhardt shields. This is probably pretty obvious, but you shred Reinhardt shields. Please, shoot at them. Bastion absolutely melts them.
- Get in very weird spots. People will not expect you to take the long way around to get somewhere. People will not expect you to be high in the air. Hide in a room where a large health pack is an obliterate people that are low. Any spot that you can shoot from while they’re committing to an objective push is a good one.
- As a closing note on Bastion–please realize that he really isn’t that good of a hero. He can and will work for you some games, but don’t expect that to be the norm. If you’re expecting to hop in and “main” Bastion, you will likely be in for a rude awakening or a lot of lost games.
- D.Va is relatively straight forward. Due to that, this section probably won’t contain as much helpful stuff as the others.
- D.Va is not a traditional tank at all. She plays much more like a flanker. If you aren’t in the enemies face the majority of the game, you are doing it wrong. You fusion cannons have a lot of damage up close, but it falls off VERY heavily. Boost in and try and stay as close as possible otherwise you won’t get the kill.
- D.Va is a harasser more than anything. It can be very hard to rack up kills as D.Va. You normally have to thrust in to get close enough to make your damage good, but then your thrusters are done. They normally can just run away from you. If you manage to thrust in a second time, you have some kill potential, but it puts you at a great risk of losing your mech because your thrusters are off cooldown and you are in pretty deep at that point. Your job is to mostly put damage into people and force them to run away and go get health packs.
- Be disruptive. Very, VERY disruptive. I don’t really know how to elaborate on this, so all I’ll say is that if it’s disruptive, you are doing your job.
- Defense matrix can eat up things like reaper ult. Kind of obvious, but make sure to use this ability a lot. Cooldown is short so spam it whenever you or your team is getting pressured.
- D.Va’s ult is really, really lack-luster. It is great if you can combo it with Zarya or Reinhardt, but outside of that, you won’t be getting much done with it. Just send it in whenever the other team is committing hard and hope for the best.
- As I mentioned earlier, I played a LOT of Genji during the beta. This section will probably be the most helpful due to the playtime and all the cool things you can do with Genji.
- Starting with an obvious one, your dash resets every time you get an elimination. Whether it’s a kill or kill assist, if your dash is off cooldown, it will be reset after an elimination. Killing a building (or anything that isn’t a hero) won’t reset it. Killing D.Va’s mech will also not reset the dash cooldown.
- Quick melee. PLEASE, USE IT. Genji is very reliant on quick melee. You should use it a lot. If you have a mouse with thumb buttons, bind it to mouse 4 or something (I think it by default).
- If a target is right in front of you, here is the combo: Right click, quick melee, then dash through them. If you land this entire combo, it is 164 damage practically instantly. This is obviously a lot, and will either kill or leave most heroes with only a little bit of HP that is easy to finish off. If they don’t have a defensive ability they can use (such as Symmetra) you can throw in as many right click as you can at the start.
- If they are farther away, here is the combo: left click, dash in as the shurikens are hitting, spin around, right click, then quick melee. This is 248 damage and will kill almost all the non-tanks.
- Shuriken speed and travel time is critical to learn. You have to constantly adjust your aim throughout the ENTIRE left click to hit all three shurikens. If you can’t do this, you won’t be able to do either of the combos or get a lot of kills at all really.
- Switch Up your firing modes! I see a lot of really good Genji players rely on right-click WAY too much. If you aren’t close enough to hit 2 or more shurikens from your right-click, you need to try and use left click. Right-click is much, much more forgiving but you will lose damage if you don’t use left-click. Right-click is amazing if you can hit 2 or more of the shurikens from it. It has a slightly higher rate of fire, so if 2 or more will hit, just go with the right-click rather than trying to hit all 3 stars from the left-click.
- When using deflect, AIM IT and think about what heroes are shooting at you. If the hero is hitscan (like S:76 or Tracer), you need to aim right at them. If the hero is Pharah, pretend you’re playing Pharah and lead the shot back at her. You can headshot with the reflect projectiles, which means that if your aim is good, you can kill people that are just poking at you surprisingly fast. Deflect is actually surprisingly good against Tracer if she is close to you. She shoots so fast and does so much damage that it is pretty easy to force recall out of her or even kill her if you reflect with good aim and then dash through her.
- Deflect can deflect ultimates if they’re projectile based. That means if a McCree is charging deadeye, he has to wait to fire it or he will die. You obviously still have to aim the deadeye back at him. You can reflect stuff like Reaper ult which will make Reaper kill himself. If a Reaper ults, dash in and deflect for a free kill. This list really goes on, if it’s a projectile or hit-scan based ultimate, it can be reflected. Probably the most useful but also hardest to deflect one is Zarya’s, but if you can, it will turn into your team’s grav surge and will suck the enemy Zarya’s entire team in.
- Dragonblade will NOT work unless you get a dash reset early on into its duration. Ideally, the other team has a Zenyatta or Tracer with no blinks and recall, and you dash through them and immediately kill them. Getting your first dash reset early on is very key, after you get your first one, the rest of the kills become a lot easier and you have a much smaller chance of dieing. Target 1 person to get this dash reset. You need to dash in and go for that 1 person relentlessly. Once again, preferably that person is Zenyatta.
- Using Dragonblade resets your dash cooldown, but not your deflect. Try to avoid popping deflect towards the end of your dragonblade, it will eat the cooldown for deflect and cancel the ability at the end of Dragonblade’s duration.
- Hanzo is pretty straight forward–you either have good aim and you get a lot of kills. Or you have bad aim and you do nothing. Not a whole lot to talk about
- Scatter arrow can 1 shot pretty much anyone unless they’re a tank. If all the scatter pieces hit (all 5) it does 375 damage. Even if it doesn’t kill them, it will put a huge dent into their HP.
- Fire scatter arrow DIRECTLY at someone’s feet. Not close to their feet, but literally a tiny bit in front of their feet. This will make all 5 hit.
- Shoot sonic arrow on to corners of rooms/buildings where you think/know enemies are to line up easy headshots.
- Keep sonic and scatter arrow on cooldown. You need to be using both of these a lot. Don’t waste it, but don’t hesitate to use it.
- Dragonstrike has a lot of potential, but often times you’re lucky to get more than 1 kill with it if you aren’t combo-ing it with something like Zarya ult. That being said, if you don’t have a combo hero or you do and their ult isn’t close to being charged, spam out dragons. Dragonstrike charges very fast and chances are, you could have recharged it already by the time you see an opportunity for a good one. Just use it.
- Go for headshots. Headshots do 250 meaning they will 1 shot all non-tanks as long as they aren’t buffed (in the case of Reaper.)
- Junkrat’s main strength is how much damage output he has. He does 120 damage on a direct hit and has 5 grenades before he has to reload–this means he can do a whopping 600 damage before having to reload. His rate of fire is also pretty good, so if you’re accurate, you can melt anyone really.
- Keep in mind that steel trap visually sinks into the ground a bit to make it harder to see if the junkrat trap is on the enemy team (AKA if you’re playing junkrat, that’s what they’ll see.) This can make it pretty hard to see if you stick it in the right spot. Generally you’ll want to stick it on paths that have a lot of fighting going on. It’s relatively easy to be in the thick of a fight and step on a trap due to how focused you are on aiming, dodging, watching, etc.
- His trap also works well for locking down flank routes. For example, I normally stick my trap in the building to the right of first point Numbani (to the right from the defender’s perspective.) If it gets triggered, okay cool–free kill. If it gets destroyed, then I know that someone is there and I can go see what’s goin on. If you are going to stick it on flank routes, set it around the corner of the exit or (preferably) the entrance. Setting it in the middle of a path that isn’t heavily traversed or contested won’t do you any good.
- A grenade does 120 and so does his concussion mine, so 240 if both hit. This is enough to kill most non tanks (except, once again, Reaper). If you’re fighting someone and you see one of your grenades hit, just chuck a mine and detonate it. You can kill people before they even know what hit them.
- Tire is amazing when it doesn’t get killed, but it gets killed a decent portion of the times. Your best bet is to throw it in during the middle of a fight. You can make it work when there’s no a fight going on, but you normally have to have it drop down on the other team. Sending it straight in works occasionally, but if it’s not coming from around a corner that is very close, it’s going to get killed.
- Lastly, Junkrats grenades explode if they touch an enemy at any point during their duration for full damage unlike tf2’s demoman. That means whether you land a direct hit with no bounces, or it bounces along, it’s going to do 120 if the grenade is a direct hit.
- Lucio has received quite a few nerfs over time. Why? Because he is a solid support and is very likely the best support. If you need a support hero, Lucio will always help your team a lot.
- Switch between speed and healing often. Obviously whenever your team is in a fight, being spammed at, or someone on your team needs healing, stay on heal. If none of those 3 things are happening, you should be on speed. Basically if there’s on one person that needs healing and he’s only missing a bit of HP, stick on speed.
- Use Amp It Up during critical moments. You shouldn’t just spam Amp. You NEED to have Amp ready to use during fights. If you aren’t amping your heal for the fight, Lucio is a very lackluster healing support. If there is a low HP enemy running away, don’t be afraid to amp speed and chase them down. The majority of your amps should come in the form of healing, but keep an eye out for opportunities to use speed amp. Also, you should always speed amp your team at the start of the round if you’re defending or if it’s control point.
- Use your right click often. It doesn’t do a ton of damage, but it’s more or less free damage on a 5 second cooldown, so use it whenever you’re trying to kill someone. On maps with ledges, like Nepal or Lijiang Tower, knocking 2 or even 1 hero off before the fight starts greatly impacts how the fight plays out. Hunt for chances to knockoff, stand around corners and stuff.
- Wallride has an extremely high skill cap. If you get good enough with it, you stay off the ground for basically as long as you want. There are guides, so just google, “Lucio Wallride Tips,” or something like that.
- If the other team has a Zarya, try to save your ult for whenever she drops hers. If they don’t have a huge damage followup, it will save your whole team. Otherwisae, use your ult preemptively, not reactively. People can get blown up very easily, so it’s better to pop your ult sooner rather than later. That being said, you should obviously use your judgement and wait as long as you can.
- McCree is one of the better heroes in Overwatch. He has been consistently played through all of his nerfs and changes. McCree is worth getting good at, that is for sure.
- Please, for the love of god use your left-click. If every one of your reloads is a result of using right-click, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG. Left-click is amazing, but requires something that often steers people away–accuracy. On some maps you might be able to get away with just right-clicking, sure, but it hugely handicaps you. Left-click is amazing and headshots with it are deadly.
- That being said…DO use right-click whenever someone is close to you. Right-click shreds people and you should use it whenever you conceivably can. Just be wary of how inaccurate it can be sometimes. Sometimes right-click will call your name when it’s just better to hit the left-clicks.
- Use right-click to melt shields. If there’s a Reinhardt in your team’s face, right-click until he backs off. You can kill his shield pretty fast by just using fan the hammer.
- You can throw flashbang above Reinhardt’s shield which will stun him. The flashbang has to be pretty well placed, but it’s very possible with a little practice. If the flash hits, right click, roll through his shield that he’ll try and protect himself with, and right-click again.
- Deadeye has many obvious applications, so I’ll just give you a way to consistently get more out of your deadeye–flank with it. Deadeye from the front works sometimes, but flanking with deadeye is normally the way to go if possible. Getting behind or on the side of their team makes it much harder to run out of in many cases. That being said, don’t be afraid to deadeye from the front just for 2 or even 1 kill. Deadeye charges fast, using it for 1 kill isn’t really that bad.
- Mei was one of the weaker heroes, and still kind of is, but she’s gotten marginally better. If your Mei is good, she will do work.
- Mei is not just a close range hero. In fact, I’d say that she’s actually strongest at mid-range. You need to abuse your rightclick, it is VERY good if you can aim. You can 1 shot headshot Tracers with it and this is a lot better than hoping a tracer has 0 blink and recalls. I have shut down VERY good tracer players before by headshotting them with right-click. It takes some practice, but the projectile moves fast enough to where you don’t have to do a ton of guess work. Running in to left-click normally isn’t the best play if you’re accurate, your icicles do a pretty ridiculous amount of damage for how fast you shoot them and how many you can shoot before reloading.
- Obviously, use Mei’s left click too. Mei’s right click is primarily for poking and killing low HP heroes with headshots. During the thick of a fight, you need to try and get in there and freeze some people. After your freeze goes off, you should right click headshot them then quick melee. Sometimes you can get 2 right click headshots off if you’re quick. This will kill most heroes.
- Use ice wall to split up the fight. One of the most practical examples of this is on Anubis last. You can wall off the bridge to the control point. They have nowhere to run unless they drop into the pit, in which case they aren’t pushing anytime soon. Use it to block off chokes once 1 or 2 heroes are through. This results in easy kills and dissuades the enemy team from pushing as they’ll be down a couple of heroes.
- Another cool thing you can do with icewall is lift people up into spots they normally couldn’t get up to. For example, lifting a Bastion up to a spot that he normally never would be in helps him out a lot.
- Blizzard is pretty self-explanatory–just throw it right into the middle of the fight. You know you’re doing well if Blizzard is charging fast. If you’re hitting a lot of right-clicks (AKA playing well) you will charge Blizzard very fast. It’s a pretty stong ultimate that either forces the other team off the point or gives your team an advantage. The AoE isn’t huge though, so place it well.
- Cryo-Freeze is pretty easy to understand. Use it when you’re about do die. Use it after you throw Blizzard if you need to stay safe until they’re all frozen. Use it to contest the point and payload. Use it to bait people, if they’re chasing you, wait until the last second to pop cryo-freeze. This will hopefully put the person who was chasing you way out of position and make him an easy kill for your team. Finally, you can make it out of even the worst situations by cryo-freezing then walling yourself off.
- Mercy is a solid support. She can keep everyone healed up very well–probably even better than Lucio because she doesn’t have to rely on a 12 second cooldown to do a considerable amount. The one thing that Mercy is weaker at than Lucio is staying alive. Lucio can passively heal and speed himself around (even amp heal himself which will heal him for 360 HP over 3 seconds). The only way Mercy can dodge flankers’ kill attempts is to guardian angel away, which doesn’t work all the time.
- I have played a fair bit of Mercy, but everything I have and would like to say would take far too long for me to type. That being said, I’m just going to refer you guys to OneAmongstMany’s Mercy video which is very fantastic. Credit to him for making a great video. Covers everything you should know and more.
- Pharah is very comparable to Junkrat in terms of damage out. Pharah’s rockets and Junkrat’s grenades both do 120 on a direct hit. The main difference being Junkrat has a considerably higher rate of fire, but Pharah has an extra 120 damage before reloading (putting her total damage capability up to 720.)
- Those of you who have played Quake or TF2 will feel very at home with how the rockets “feel.” The rocket speed is very similar to that of the tf2 soldier’s so you’ll get right back to landing airshots with hardly any practice. You can’t really bounce or knock people around though, so the only time when you’ll really need to land airshots is on other Pharahs.
- Landing direct hits is very important. The difference between 120 damage from a direct and ~70 from a splash hit is very big. You’re going to need at least 2 rockets (even if they’re both directs) to kill anyone that’s full HP. This means that if 2 of your rockets are just splash, you are barely doing more than one direct with 2 rockets. Get them directs.
- Flying around is obviously really powerful but if the other team has a lot of hitscan (S:76, McCree, Widow etc.) it can be hard to stay up there for long or even at all. If you’re getting shot while just floating around…don’t float around. You can still use her jump jets to get on top of buildings that others can’t reach.
- You can actually put in a lot of work against a Reinhardt. If you fly above him (has to be directly above him or very close), you can hit him and his shield can’t save him. He can aim his shield straight up, but that leaves him exposed to the other 5 heroes on your team that can kill him. If the other team has a Reinhardt, you should be pressuring at least the way he positions his shield.
- Concussive blast is mostly useful in 3 ways. One, you have to get in or out of somewhere fast. You can blast yourself a good distance away/towards it and hope for the best. Second, you can knock people off. Lastly, if someone is moving really unpredictably or is just hard for you to hit, you can blast them with this and they’ll move in a very predictable straight line so that you can hopefully get some damage in.
- In most cases, you’re going to be using Pharah’s fuel (holding space) to travel horizontally. It doesn’t give you hardly an vertical height, but it can move you a good distance horizontally. That being said, tap the fuel, don’t hold it down. If you hold it down, you’ll be wasting a lot of potential horizontal distance. Just tap it often enough to keep your height the same.
- Barrage easily has the highest damage potential out of any ability or ultimate in the whole game. It’s not evenclose. At around 30 rockets per second that deal 40-60 damage for 3 seconds, the minimum damage you’ll get if all the rockets hit is 3600 with the maximum being 5400. Even with the minimum damage, you can burn through a whole Reinhardt shield and still have enough damage left to completely burn through and kill an entire sound barrier on any hero. And that’s the minimum. Basically this means that if you combo it with grav surge, the only way anyone is surviving is if they have a Zenyatta ult–and the only one who’s going to be surviving is Zenyatta. And that’s with the minimum damage output possible.
- The example above assumes that all rockets hit, which is extremely unlikely (unless you have a grav surge to combo). In reality, Pharah’s ult takes a good deal of practice to aim with if you’re outside of close range. It does a lot of damage and doesn’t need to be comboed, but you need to kill people before they have a chance to kill you (very easy for them to do) meaning you have to be accurate. Your best bet overall is getting behind or on the side of the enemies almost point blank, then just obliterating them. Generally the closer you are, the better.
- Reinhardt is the back bone of most front-line focused hero compositions. If the other team doesn’t have flankers, you can just push and push and push. Reinhardt is very good when your team isn’t being heavily pressured from the flanks. His job becomes a lot harder when the other team has one or two good Genjis or Tracers. If you’re being destroyed by flanks, DON’T pick Reinhardt. It probably won’t work. If the other team is neglecting to flank or has players that are bad flankers, running Reinhardt will be great.
- If the other team does happen to have flankers or Pharahs that are pressuring you, you need to look at where the most damage is coming from. Sure, if you shield straight up you’ll be blocking the Pharah’s rockets. But oh no. What was that? Your Mercy just got sniped because she was relying on your now non-existent shield. The only team you should shield yourself from damage that isn’t frontal is when it has the potential to kill you. You need to keep your shield where it will block the most of their damage. This means that if two Tracers are on you and your team, then yes, try and shield you and your team from them if the front side of you isn’t going to be throwing a ton of damage your way.
- Reinhardt’s ult is very good. It builds very slow if you aren’t doing damage. This means that the single most important thing you can do for your ult charge is to firestrike as soon as it comes back up. If firestrike is off cooldown and there’s a target, chuck it. You won’t build ult very fast without spamming firestrikes.
- The other way to charge ult fast is to go for hammer swings and charges even if you don’t know if it will get you a kill. If your team doesn’t desperately need your shield and you can go hammer or charge someone without dieing, go do it. Get that ult charge.
- Charge doesn’t have a lot of fancy things–you either hit and you do a lot of damage, or you miss and you don’t. Risk-reward. Other than that, it’s pretty easy to land a charge on an enemy Reinhardt that is shielding and is reasonably close to you, so you can go for that. Also use this to get out of spawn and closer to the fight faster. Cooldown is only 10 seconds so you’ll have it back up in plenty of time to use it in a fight.
- Earthshatter sounds a lot less cooler than hammer down, so do yourself a favor and just realize that Reinhardt’s ultimate is not called earthshatter. It is called hammer down.
- Some games you’ll be able to build it faster than others. It will depend largely on what heroes your team and theirs has. If you’re building it fast throughout that particular round, use it more liberally. If you’re building slowly, spam firestrike more and just try and find that perfect moment.
- Just use it whenever it will hit a lot of people or important targets. Nothing too complicated. Keep in mind that it will be blocked by stuff like other Reinhardt’s barrier even if they didn’t have their shield up when you pressed Q. Hammer down spreads over time in a cone shape, meaning if the other Reinhardt has good reflexes, he can block it. Just be wary about using it when a Reinhardt is right in front of you.
- Reaper is a pretty solid but straight forward hero–the thing that sets the good reapers apart from the bad ones is aim. That being said, this section won’t contain a ton of useful stuff but I’ll do my best.
- Your biggest responsibility is making sure their tanks are always under pressure. Keep them low HP and kill them if you can. Reaper melts tanks due to his damage per pellet being so high and tanks having a huge hitbox. All the pellets will hit and they will take a ton of damage–you should never lose a fight to a tank assuming you’re full HP.
- Shadowstep doesn’t have to always be used to get to a high place. It’s also very good to just get behind people without them seeing you. Take Lijiang point 1 for example. If you’re moving around to try and ult from behind, they will see you coming from the 2 entrances to the point. If you shadowstep past this area, it not only makes you unseen, but it’s a lot faster.
- When an enemy hero dies, they will drop a little soul globe that heals you for 50.
- Death Blossom does not go through shields. A Reinhardt that is good will completely shut down your chances of doing anything notable with death blossom. If the other team has a Reinhardt near where you want to ult, kill him or wait until he is too far away to save most or all of the targets you have.
- Death Blossom does a ton of damage, but you normally need the element of surprise to do anything super great with it. Dropping down on a team or coming in when they’re in a fight and distracted with your allies is when stuff like 3 or 4 man death blossom kills happen.
- Roadhog is a solid hero. He got a few buffs last patch that made him a lot more viable against squishy heroes that run around really fast.
- One thing that you need to understand when you’re playing Roadhog is how much ult charge he feeds the other team. You have 600 HP, a big hitbox, and an ability that makes you stand still and have more health to have ult built off of. A Tracer can literally charge her entire pulse bomb from zero to 100 if there’s a Roadhog around who the Tracer is unloading on. The fact that Roadhog feeds so much ult is by far the worst thing about the hero, in my opinion.
- Enough of his negatives though, let’s talk about his hook. Hooking any non-tank will pretty much spell their death if you get a good shot off. Obviously aim for the head after hooking someone. Hook has a very long range and can be used to do stuff like hook Pharahs out of the air pretty easily. As I mentioned in my earlier point, Roadhog isn’t a great choice against Tracer due to how much ult you feed her, but if you land a hook, it’s normally a dead Tracer. If you can somehow avoid feeding Tracer a ton of ult charge, Roadhog is a pretty good Tracer counter as long as you can aim your hook.
- Using your heal in a sure-death situation is a bad idea. It just gives the other team more health to charge ult off of. The only time you shouldn’t use it is if you know for a fact you’re going to die. Otherwise, spam this ability–it’s what keeps you active.
- Try and hook key targets. Hooking a Zenyatta that will potentially counter your next push with transcendence is a big kill. Supports > Everyone else when you’re going for hooks unless you can hook a Tracer. Hook also cancels some ultimates like Pharah’s and Reaper’s. Even if you die for it, cancelling their ult is probably worth it if it’s going to save your team. After hooking someone, you should left-click headshot and immediately follow up with a quick melee.
- Roadhog is extremely close range focused. His right-click is often cited as being a medium range tool–it’s not. His right-click is just for situations outside of them being almost point blank.
- Besides melting a Reinhardt shield (which is potentially a very good use of your ult if your team needs the shield down to use some ults and push), Roadhog ult is either feast or famine. Your best shot of making it work is pushing someone up against a wall where they can’t escape. It does a ton of damage close up, but it pushes people so far back so fast that your chances of killing someone with it are pretty low unless you can push them into something to stop them from being knocked back. It can also be used just to push people away, whether it be to secure the objective or off of a cliff.
- 76 is a very solid hero. If your aim is good, he is versatile enough to fit into almost any team to great effect.
- 3 round burst is the name of the game for long ranges. It is 100% accurate if you burst fire it, meaning that you can do a lot of damage no matter how far away your target is. If they aren’t super far away though, just hold down left-click.
- Headshotting is how you really start outputting a scary amount of damage. His damage is solid without headshots if you’re aiming well, but if you can headshot, people will melt.
- 76 is one of the best Pharah counters. When she is floating around in the air, you can easily heavily damage or kill her. If the Pharah doesn’t start dropping fast enough or at all, this is pretty much a free kill.
- 76’s helix rockets don’t have a big splash radius, and they don’t do a lot of splash damage. If it isn’t a direct hit, they aren’t going to do a lot. If it is a direct hit, these things are very scary. Where to aim them takes a bit of practice, but once you master it, this is a very good tool.
- Don’t walk, sprint. Pretty obvious–the only time you shouldn’t be sprinting is when you’re shooting.
- If you know you’re about to fight someone, sprint away and get behind a corner. This will give you time to get your heal station down, then fight them. Heal station gives you a pretty big advantage in a 1v1.
- 76’s ult can potentially be very strong, but if you misuse it, it is pretty weak. The main time you want to use this is when the other team is heavily committed or has no cover at all available. Don’t use this whenever there’s a Reinhardt around. His shield will eat your ultimate and make it basically useless.
- While 76’s ult is effectively aimbot, you still have to aim it some. If you’re trying to focus down 1 target like you should, an enemy can get in the way and start taking the fire instead. Just try and keep your crosshair as close to your target as possible.
- Symmetra is a solid “support hero.” If she had a true archetype, she would be defense-support. Having a Symmetra on your team is always welcome and will help.
- Keep. Your. Shields. Up. Obviously stick a shield on everyone at the start (just count each shield that you’ve put on until you’ve counted to 5). Beyond that though, your 5 other teammates should ALWAYS have shields. If they die and take teleporter it says, “Player name used your teleporter.” Instead, read this as “PLAYER NAME NEEDS YOUR SHIELDS.” 25 HP that regenerates is very good and often makes the difference between living or dieing when someone is trying to 1 shot you.
- As far as your turrets go, there are 2 main ways to place them. You can place them spread out or a lot in 1 clump. I prefer (and think it’s better) to clump them up. They do 25 damage/sec which means that with all 6 in one spot, they will be doing 150 damage per second. If a Tracer uses her last blink charge to get into the room where your 6 sentries are, she will die in literally 1 second. That is a lot of damage. The only weakness of clumping them up is that they become very weak to heroes like Winston. I still think it’s worth the risk though, because putting 2 in spot just so they don’t get Winston’d makes them very weak anyways.
- You should try to book it out of spawn to get as many sentries as you can up.
- Generally you should place them around a doorway or around a corner. If you put them in a doorway, spread them out so that if the hero that walks in doesn’t have AoE, he will have a much harder time killing them. IE put them in sort of an arc shape around the doorway.
- Symmetra actually does a lot of damage. I’ve had a few rounds where for over half of the round, I had gold damage and eliminations. If you just hide out and move behind/come from the side of their push, you can melt any non tanks unless they have an escape up.
- Spam right clicks. Spam them. They go through shields so if there is a Reinhardt shielding, that’s where you should aim your orb spam. If there’s not a Reinhardt, just spam them where you think they’ll hit. Point is, it’s free damage and ult charge (if your tp is down.)
- Teleporter spots are obviously map-specific, but as a general rule try to place it as close to the fight as you can while putting it as much out of the way as you can. Out of the way meaning in a high spot that has very little traffic by the enemy team or is a flank route that your team can take but theirs can’t until they get further up (these do exist.)
- Torbjorn is not only super annoying, but also hands-down my least favorite hero to play against. He’s a pretty good hero for defending and if the other team doesn’t play their cards right the turret will cause problems.
- Why do I hate torbjorn so much? He’s annoying for flankers. Genji is a flanker. Anyways, his turrets seriously destroy any flanking potential that the other team has. Stick it somewhere where it will cover the exit of a flank route, and they are forced to just not flank, or they’ll get behind you and be in a very awkward spot where they can’t come out in the open for kills because the turret is there.
- More on why his turret is so good versus flankers? You might say that, “Oh, Genji has reflect. Genji counters Torbjorn!” Doesn’t really work like that. If Genji throws 2 3-shuriken bursts, hits with all of them, then uses to deflect with perfect accuracy, it barely dies and you’re left with <15 HP. This means that if the turret gets healed even ONCE, you just wasted deflect and all your HP to absolutely no effect! Even if you do kill it, Torbjorn will rebuild it and have it back to level 2 within 10 seconds–meaning you still can not flank. Alright, enough about the flankers.
- Torbjorn is a pretty straight-forward hero overall but has some lesser-known characteristics. This means I’ll basically just fill this section with tips/cool stuff rather than playstyle because all you do is build a damn turret.
- Torbjorn actually does a lot of damage. He can win a good handful of 1v1s pretty easily and has enough damage to finish off hurt people easily as well. This means that you don’t have to sit next to your turret all the time and shouldn’t if you can go do something like get behind the other team and kill their supports. Even if your turret dies, you can have it re-built and back to level 2 within less than 10 seconds. Ten. Seconds.
- Torbjorns turrets are actually healed from healthpacks. I’m not sure if this is intended or has been patched out yet, but placing your turret on a health pack makes it a bit tankier as the healthpack heals it whenever it takes damage. Obviously this will eat up the healthpack so your team won’t have it–so if you only have Symmetra or Zenyatta for a support, don’t be so keen on doing this.
- To elaborate on the healthpack thing, it will only really be tankier if the damage your turret is taking is burst damage. If it’s just being whittled down little by little, the healthpack will heal at its first available chance which might only be 5 or 10 HP.
- You can make yourself very survivable if you have a lot of scrap stocked up. If you’re being aggressive like I mentioned earlier, you can dive pretty deep and just keep topping yourself off with armor after the other armor gets destroyed. Every armor pack gives 75, so even if you only have 100 scrap, that’s 150 extra HP that isarmor meaning that it will effectively be more than 150.
- Use molten core when the other team is pushing. After you pop molten core, you turn into a monster. You have a ton of HP and you fire so fast that you can kill tanks with relative ease. After you pop molten core, you should be in the other team’s face.
- You literally don’t have to do anything to get potg, so make sure that you have a hearthstone match opened up in the background. Playing torbjorn can be boring, but all that really matters is getting potg.
- To start with, tracer is strong in the right hands, and weak otherwise. If you aren’t able to kill people, it’s because you can’t aim well enough, not because Tracer needs a buff or is weak. I know a stupidly high amount of people just want to hop in, main tracer, and think everything will be just dandy. If you have good aim, then sure. If you don’t–you will struggle a lot.
- Accuracy, once again, is by far the most important thing for playing Tracer well. She has 40 shots which she unloads in one second. There is a lot of damage wrapped up in a short time period. This is both good and bad. This is good because, if you can aim well, you can do a ton of damage very quickly and without having to reload. Bad because if your aim falters for a split-second during your clip, you will lose a LOT of damage due to how fast your ammo is dumped and how long it takes you to correct your error in aiming.
- Blink is pretty straight forward, but one of the cooler things you can do with it is fake people out. If you blink behind them then immeaditely back in front of them (blinking forward then blinking backwards will leave you where you started), they will normally turn around to find you not there and be very confused. Confused people are easy targets. They don’t shoot back and move very predictably. This is most useful against Reinhardts as they will probably both drop their shield and open themselves up to being heavily damaged by you. Be wary of using 2 blinks at once though, one blink isn’t enough to get you out of bad spots sometimes.
- Just like everything else in this game, headshots make your weapon significantly better. You can kill people before they even have time to react if you land a lot of or mostly headshots in 1 clip.
- Just pop recall whenever you’ve either taken a lot of damage in a very short period of time (that could lead to you dieing) or after you’ve blinked way too far in and you need to recall to get out. Cooldown is pretty long for a hero that plays as fast as Tracer–12 seconds. Try to avoid fighting dangerous fights whenever you don’t have recall.
- Pulse bomb builds very fast as long as you’re playing well, so use it pretty liberally. Blinking behind Reinhardt’s, bombing Teleporters, bombing supports, etc. are all good applications. Being able to stick it takes a bit of practice but you’ll get there with time.
- To start with, being good at sniping in other games doesn’t automatically make you a good or decent Widowmaker. I played sniper in tf2 for both steel and silver highlander teams, but I am pretty garbage at Widowmaker. I’ve tried putting in time, but I just can’t get good at her it seems. Overall, Widowmaker is definitely stronger than the tf2 sniper, but it doesn’t matter how much better the gun is if you can’t hit shots. Just some food for thought for you other sniper mains out there.
- Grappling hook is pretty self-explanatory. Use it to get to spots where you want to snipe from. You can hold down space just as you’re about to reach the spot you grappled to to be launched into the air.
- Venom mine is also pretty self-explanatory. Just put it in spots where the enemies will go. If the spot where you’re sniping from is easily flankable, just set up your mine around the corner of the flank entrance so you know when someone is coming and can avoid death. If you’re defending, I suggest pushing up to the enemy spawn or very close to it and setting one of these in a spot where it will get triggered. It’s basically free ult-charge as it will be off cooldown by the time you need it again.
- One of my least favorite things about playing as and against Widow is how unimportant headshots are compared to other games. It is true that most good Widow players will mostly land headshots, and it’s also true that they will be more effective than people that land mostly bodyshots. Either way, Widowmaker can be adequately effective by never landing a headshot. 150 damage every 1 second is enough to be very effective.
- Your ult charges fast. Use it often. As soon as your in a good spot to start sniping, pop it and go ham.
- There isn’t a whole lot of fancy stuff to do with Widow. You aim and you’re either effective or you’re not. That’s about all there is to it.
- Winston is a tank like Reinhardt in the sense that he stops your team from taking damage, just in a different way. As Winston, you should be harassing the other other players to the point where they can’t damage your team because they’re running.
- Leap only has a 6 second cooldown. Don’t be afraid to use it whenever and wherever. It’s pretty easy to get over-aggressive sometimes and extend to a point where there are too many people damaging you and not enough of your team to help you. Just be wary of extending too far with leap and you’ll be fine.
- Your favorite targets as Winston are Widow, Genji, and to a lesser degree, Tracer and all support heroes. If you see a Widow perched up sniping or a Genji that is too far from his team, just hop on them. They will have to run or you will kill them.
- Your shield doesn’t have a lot of HP, only 600. This means its better used re-actively other than preemptively, basically the opposite of Reinhardt’s shield. Once again, the best way to “shield” your team from damage is to make sure their damage dealers aren’t close to the fight.
- Your tesla gun goes through Reinhardts shield. It won’t do a ton due to Reinhardt having armor, but it will still do enough to make him back up after a few seconds. Pressure the Reinhardt.
- During a push, you need to find SOMEONE to hop on and make sure that they are not part of the fight. This could be really anyone unless they have a ton of movement abilities (like Tracer.) Hop on them and drop a shield on them so that they can’t do anything but run away from you. You should have your ult during a push, so once you get low, just pop your ult and keep going at it. It will fully heal you.
- Winston’s ult is best used for disruption. You won’t be getting a lot of kills with it unless you’re knocking people off (which, by the way, is a great use of his ult). This goes back to the whole concept of protecting your team by making their damage sources uncomfortable. With a 1000 HP monkey that can leap every second in your face, it’s pretty hard to play your hero and do damage, don’t you think?
- The concept of shielding your team from damage by cutting off their damage sources pretty much sums up Winston. This means that, unlike Reinhardt, sitting on the payload the whole time just to try and keep your shield up is the wrong move. If there’s down-time or the jumps are too risky, then yeah, shield your team when damage is coming and just push the payload. Otherwise, you need to be where their damage dealers want to be.
- Zarya’s role as a tank is to be an “off-tank.” This basically means that the standard conventions for what makes a tank don’t really apply to you. You can only shield your teammates once every 8 seconds for a 2 second shield of 200 damage. It’s not that amazing. The main reason you pick Zarya is because you want something that can stay in the fight, hit hard, and provide occasional damage protection. Also, to the people who try to call Zarya a “support tank”–please. Save me some effort here. Zarya is not a “support tank.”
- If your energy isn’t high, it means one of two things. It could mean that your team is steam rolling so stupidly hard that you can’t keep a high energy number. The enemies die so quickly that they can’t fight back enough to charge you. This isn’t very much fun for the Zarya player, but it’s good for winning the game. The other situation is that you just…aren’t keeping them charged. This is a problem. If your team isn’t steamrolling and you don’t have energy, you need to switch up how you’re playing.
- Most of your shields will come reactively with some slight prediction involved. Normally you can tell when someone is about to take damage. Use that to charge you up. If there is a Torbjorn turret hiding out somewhere, shield yourself, run at it, then kill it as it’s charging you up. There are a lot of ways to get energy if you aren’t steamrolling. It will come with time put into Zarya.
- In my opinion, it’s a big mistake to use right-click often. The only times I ever use right click is to lob shots at things like turrets or snipers, squeeze in as much damage as I can right before the enemy gets around a corner, or when I’m at full energy and there’s a clump of enemies. Using left-click instead of right will do more single target damage, which is way more important than spreading damage between 2 people. Focus down people with left-click instead of going for slightly bigger damage with right-click. In the case of being full energy, damaging 2 people for 95 isn’t nearly as good as damaging one person for 150. The person that you’re focusing has a much better chance to die than the 2 you did 95 to. Using right-click outside of graviton surge is fine, just please don’t overuse it. It will slightly help your damage number overall, but greatly hurt your potential to actually kill people–something Zarya is very good at and one of her biggest strengths.
- When you have people pulled into graviton surge, obviously use right click. If you don’t have any combo ults (Hanzo, Pharah, Tracer, etc.) you need to have a lot of energy or your whole team there to make it work. Be wary of stuff like sound barrier and Zenyatta ult coming out from the other team. If you don’t have combos like the heroes I mentioned earlier, you won’t get any kills out of your surge.
- Try and duck in and out of the fight every once in a while. Since 200 of your 400 HP is made up of shields, if you take 200 damage, you effectively took none if you sit out of the fight for a second.
- Zenyatta has been nerfed quite a bit but he’s still solid for most games. Just know that you will probably need a second healer if you’re running a Zenyatta. He doesn’t heal a lot so your team will likely be HP starved if you’re just running a Zenyatta.
- To supplement the lack of healing he does compared to other supports, he does very good damage. This means that if you aren’t doing damage as Zenyatta, you are likely better off picking another support. The only thing you’d have going for you at the point is orb of discord which isn’t to be scoffed at, but probably won’t make up for your lack of aim.
- Discord is great and allows you to 1v1 a lot of heroes that you really wouldn’t expect to be able to 1v1. Are you favored to win them? No, not at all. Can you? Yes, you can. Headshots with discord do 135 apiece which is pretty hefty considering your rate of fire. You shoot 3 per second which means that you can actually 1v1 some offensive classes (like Tracer even) if they get to close. 1 headshot and a kick will end Tracer, for example. It’s not easy and it requires them to be close, but with good aim, you CAN defend yourself. You’re still pretty hopeless against heroes like 76 from a long range as he is hitscan and you aren’t.
- Don’t burden yourself too with keeping harmony on someone. If they left your LoS, they did it willingly. They know where you are and they know where the health packs are, just focus on keeping yourself alive.
- Discord whoever is being shot at and is the most important to kill/has the most HP. Pretty self-explanatory. Just make sure that you constantly have a discord orb out whenever you can throw one. Always put it on the hero that’s trying to kill you before you start fighting back, 50% extra damage isn’t insignificant at all.
- Transcendence should build at a medium speed as long as you’re pulling your weight in damage. Just use it to counter-act the other team’s push or ultimates. Keep in mind that it makes you invincible.
- One thing that I wish more people had a concept of is when to use your ultimate. You win by either completing the objective, or stopping the objective from being completed. This means that if it doesn’t help your situation in regards to the objective, IT DOESN’T MATTER. Your Reaper ult way back at the other team’s spawn that killed 4 people? Yeah, that really doesn’t matter outside of looking cool and probably getting potg. It bought your team 10 seconds and that’s it. What if they push after that 10 second respawn time? Your ult is down and you don’t have it to contribute to stopping their push. I say this not to say that you should never use your ultimate unless they’re about to win the objective over, but to say that you NEED to some SOMETHING to use during their push. That is why I am normally very conservative with my ult usage, especially on defense. I know that the 5 others on my team are most likely just going to spam their’s out to get kills–that’s fine. I have mine. Just make sure you have something for sure during their push, consider doing what I do and just saving my until a very important moment.
- This is a more specific one, but I feel like I need to put this here again. I have a feeling like a lot of people will be complaining about how OP tracer is. Yes, she is very strong, but she’s not impossible to beat. As I mentioned in the Mei section, Mei right click destroys Tracer if you get a headshot. When you’re countering Tracer with Mei, you don’t try and use left-click. She will just blink away or recall 90% of the time. You use right and finish her instantly with an icicle to the head.
- This is a more obvious one, but you need to play with your team. It’s a lot harder when playing with randoms, I know. A good portion of people in the closed beta were willing to use their mic and call stuff so hopefully things will be similar during the open beta.
- I know that everyone has their “special hero” in mind that they really want to give a try which is fine. Just keep in mind that, chances are, you probably won’t stick with that hero or even like them quite as much as you thought you would. In my case, I was very committed to Hanzo since I saw the game get announced at Blizzcon 2014. I played him a lot for the first 2 weeks when I was lucky enough to get in the open beta–in fact, I played almost exclusively Hanzo for quite a while. I wasn’t expecting Genji to not only be my best hero, but also my favorite hero to play. Keep an open mind.
Notes n Stuff
- First and definitely foremost, thank you to SpriteGuy and the Oversheet for not only providing me the good handful of data I needed to write this, but also for being an awesome and cool guy to play with. Do us all a favor and cut the Torbjorn flair though.
- Excluding this last section, this post is a pretty large 10,088 words.
- Mostly I just hope this helps someone enjoy the game more. Cheers guys and if you see Lite out there say Hello!
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