The Overwatch closed beta has finally begun, and lucky players have dived into its wonderful world with reckless abandon. Watching streams so far has been a chaotic and harrowing experience, as it seems very few players are focused on improving their skills and learning the intricacies of the game. Thankfully Overwatch includes active in-game tips while you're playing, and players with an attentive eye will gain an edge from them in no time.
I've assembled 10 of the best tips I've seen pop up in Overwatch so far, along with a little extra discussion to explain why they're so important. All new Overwatch players could stand to spend a little time learning these tips to improve their play.
When approaching an unaware enemy, don't open fire too soon.
The frenetic speed of Overwatch can be overwhelming at times, but it's important not to get caught up in the speed just to be fast. You can still play in a careful and calculated way. Shooting everyone you see immediately means you're throwing away strategic opportunities to gain an advantage alongside a teammate, and you might also be unsafely announcing your presence.
Watch for enemy snipers while airborne. You have little cover and your movement can be easy to predict.
Most new players are taking full advantage of flying characters, but not everyone has figured out the counter to these heroes yet. Because of the predictable movement patterns of airborne characters, snipers can line them up and mow them down. Be mindful if you're in the air, and consider switching to a sniper if flyers are dominating your team.
While in sentry configuration, Bastion cannot turn to face directly behind himself.
A lot of people have been destroyed by the outright power Bastion can unleash in sentry mode. The important thing to realize is that he's immobile and inflexible when he's parked in sentry mode. Mobil characters can literally just dive behind him and execute him from pointe-blank range before he can do anything. As Bastion, keep that in mind for find a position. As everyone else, look for those opportunities to sneak behind him and ruthlessly delete him.
Always keep moving around the battlefield to make it harder for enemies to locate and aim at you.
You can't afford to be stationary at any moment. You need to be constantly moving when engaging enemies, and you need to change your approach angles and directions too. Being mobile both mechanically and strategically will make you a hard target for opponents.
Team composition matters! A well rounded team increases your chance of winning.
Don't get stuck to a single hero! Far too many players are selecting characters they like and want to play, with no regard for team composition or map strategy. Look for synergies and counters to give your team an edge, and never be inflexible when it comes to changing heroes.
You hear sounds from your enemies more prominently than those of your allies.
As visually cluttered and confusing as Overwatch can be, it's important to maximize use of your secondary sense — sound. Pay attention to audio cues to know when an enemy is nearby. This gives attentive and careful players a distinct advantage.
Avoid open spaces and areas with long sight lines as you approach your objective.
Overwatch maps are incredibly complex and layered, with nooks, crannies, and levels all over. There's no reason to travel via main throughfares when there's almost always another way to approach an enemy or an engagement. Giving your opponents time to line up shots or identify your presence is a good way to die and endanger teammates.
Sometimes it is better to aim at the ground under your target than to attempt a direct hit.
Many abilities in the game benefit from proximity or reflective damage, so you need to be aware of your weapon's patterns and potential. It's much better to have guaranteed damage off the ground than it is to risk missing altogether from straight shots. Just be conscious of where and why you're shooting at all times.
These 8 general tips might pop up from time to time while you're playing Overwatch, and they should serve as a staunch reminder to concentrate on improving your play and being a good ally every chance you get. Once you master these basics, you'll be on to bigger and better tactics in no time!