Overwatch Callouts Guide for Competitive Players
Part 1: What are callouts?
– Callouts are quick, and concise bits of information that are necessary for your team to know
– Callouts prepare your team for upcoming events
– Callouts can make oblivious teammates aware of certain situations
– Callouts are useful at all ranks, and making proper callouts becomes a true skill of its own
Part 2: Who makes callouts?
– I don’t think that only one person or role should make callouts
– I am biased, and I prefer tanks making callouts. My list goes as follows: 1. Tanks 2. Supports. 3. DPS
– Each role still has specific role-based callouts that they can make
– Supports should be calling; Ultimate charge, enemy flanker positioning, heals to low HP teammates, and specifically when they are being attacked by flankers.
– DPS should be calling; Low HP targets, Ultimate charge, out of position heroes, and flankers.
– Tanks should be calling; shield charge, ultimate percentages, engagement timings, healing needs, target calling, blocks and denials of enemy ultimate’s, dives, and more.
– Although these are just a few examples of what each class generally calls, they can all be changed out depending on needs by the team.
– There is nothing wrong with a DPS or support making every call, just as long as you only have 1-2 people calling at any given time.
Part 3: How do I make callouts, and example of callouts?
– The very BASICS of callouts are the following: do not mumble, talk clearly, and speak up if the game gets too noisy. Shotcalling is not the time to be quiet.
– Cut out the BS in callouts, don’t explain 37,000 things in the same sentence. Clear, concise calls.
– Examples(over 24 in-game examples in video)
o Tracer behind(basic, quick, but understandable and useful)
o Genji is on our Zenyatta(more info, urgent, useful)
o Charging in now(important for supports to hear, useful)
o Going in on 3, 1…2…3(a little longer, but important to call engages)
o Shield’s at half(important, basic)
o I have grav(simple, useful for next engage)
o Winston one shot(low target, important, easy kill if acted upon)
o Enemy team in server room(location callout, useful for entire team)
o Example of a bad callout: “Tracer is going up the uh…stairs over there behind that white room with like 134HP right now and I think she has a blink or two left, I couldn’t force recall and she might have been like halfway to pulse bomb. So we should really be careful guys.” Too much info here, keep it clear and concise. If you say this during a teamfight, I’m going to kill you.(in game)
– These are some really basic examples of callouts. They are all clear, and there will not be confusion about these.
– It’s important to remember that you actually can hurt your team by making bad calls. Most of the time, the most important calls are targets. You actually need to have a decent understanding of the game to know which target should be focused and why. Sometimes it requires switching mid-fight which is an acquired skill. Don’t fret, you will improve over time.
Part 4: How can I improve at making callouts?
– The easiest way to improve at making callouts is by practicing them, nothing will ever beat it.
– Learning each map can help a lot, specifically the names of the locations on these maps. This will allow you to make clearer calls around specific spots, and reduces the vagueness of most calls.
– Improving gamesense in general(by playing) will improve your calls. There are sometimes 15 things to think about at once when making a call, from HP, to position, to ult charges, to ability cooldowns, to team comps, etc… and this will require you to make a quick calculation in your head about what is the right course of action. Don’t be afraid to fail, make the best decision you can and follow through. You will fail sometimes, callouts aren’t always easy, but you need to learn from those mistakes.
Part 5: Conclusion and Final Thoughts
Just trying to make callouts proves one thing, you want to get better at the game. I can’t tell you the amount of people who refuse to communicate in Overwatch, the most team oriented game I’ve ever played competitively. Callouts are important at all skill levels. If your team is unwilling to talk, it’s your time to step up and make calls. They won’t always listen and that is okay, just do your best. Callouts need to be learned over time, and they aren’t always super simple. The basics like positioning, ults, and calling out flankers and low hp enemies are simple enough, but once that fight starts…things tend to go to hell. That is where you truly can shine as a shotcaller. Remember to be quick and concise with your calls, nothing that will distract your teammates. Callouts can be as simple as two words, don’t try to over complicate things. Callouts are a huge part of communication, and when things are going well and the team is communicating Overwatch feels like a completely different game. Practice makes perfect, learn the maps, learn team comps, learn position, increase your knowledge of the game and you will start to make better callouts.
Quick, concise calls. Just try. Practice makes perfect.