Overwatch 2 tier list: the best heroes in Season 1

Overwatch 2 sees balance shifts original game's heroes and adds some new ones. Here is where they all sit in our Overwatch 2 tier list

Overwatch 2 Tier List: Mei can be seen firing her freeze gun

Everyone has got some time in with Overwatch 2 and with solid win rates for all the heroes after a few weeks, finding the best character to play as isn’t an easy task. No one stands out beyond anyone else to a great degree, but there are still some strong characters. As such we have pulled together an Overwatch 2 tier list with the best characters you can use across all the roles. Whether it is one of the new heroes or a classic hero there should be something here that fits your playstyle.

Overwatch Tier List

Our Overwatch 2 Tier List looks as follows for the launch of the game:

  • S-tier – D.Va, Genji, Soldier 76, Lúcio, Ana
  • A-tier – Orisa, Moira, Widowmaker, Sigma, Roadhog, Junker Queen, Kiriko, Sojourn, Mercy, Zenyatta, Bastion, Hanzo
  • B-tier –  Reaper, Tracer, Winston, Zarya, Cassidy, Pharah, Baptiste, Reinhardt, Sombra, Brigitte, Doomfist
  • C-tier – Wrecking Ball, Echo, Junkrat, Ashe, Torbjörn
  • D-tier – Mei, Symmetra

S-Tier

D.Va

D.Va comes into Overwatch 2 with very little in the way of major changes or reworks because, by default, she stands to gain quite a lot from the more damage-focused 5v5 format. Her mech’s Rocket Boosters have always made her a natural at chasing down mobile damage heroes, and the light buff to her health and primary fire accuracy ensure she remains just as effective in that regard.

But, despite her chunky hitbox, she has shown she is a must-pick character for any team due to her ability to disrupt and displace enemies with her mech. While weak out of the mech, the explosion radius of its self-destruct more than makes up for it and should catch someone off guard, netting you another mech. As such, the cycle will continue and so will your domination.

Genji

A resurgence in the viability of Genji is a clear indication of Overwatch 2’s more shooter-oriented gameplay and damage focus. With hitscan damage and projectiles once more driving eliminations, Genji acts as a natural countermeasure with his ability to deflect bullets and ward off a lot of the more damage-focused heroes.

With fewer shields in the way, Genji has really come into his own, able to attack from all directions and surprise players with his mobility. His ultimate doesn’t feel nearly as powerful as it once was, but his other abilities more than make up for that weakness. He is a high-skill character, but if you can really get to grips with his moveset you will dominate the match, clearing enemies off an objective.

Soldier: 76

Continuing the trend of Overwatch 2 being some sort of upside-down world in which all the trends we know from Overwatch are being subverted before our very eyes, Soldier: 76 is by a wide margin the most reliable DPS hero right now. A character who seemed to hardly ever step above mid-tier even with substantial buffs, now he’s in a position where Blizzard has had to nerf him to bring him back down to a balanced level.

Touting zero recoil on his Pulse Rifle in the initial burst, Soldier: 76 is able to take advantage of Overwatch 2’s lack of shields and apply remarkably accurate and consistent pressure to any enemy team attempting to hold an objective. His ability to sprint to high points and stay there with a self-sustaining Biotic Field means teams are going to have to dedicate significant resources to chasing him down before they can win any fight. He can absolutely lay into the other team and pick them off from both close range and a distance.

Lúcio

At nearly all competitive ranks on the original Overwatch, Lúcio boasts the highest support hero win rate, primarily because he never dies and he does a tremendous amount for his team. He is a very tricky character to learn. But, he does decent damage, can stall out objectives all on his own, and his ultimate ability is one of the most effective in the game at mitigating damage, and somehow, that’s not even why most teams rely on him as a pick.

Lúcio’s true power comes from the speed boost of his Crossfade ability. Mobility is such a valuable resource in Overwatch and Overwatch 2, it does everything from minimising incoming damage to enabling better team positioning. And, considering he can bounce around the map, wall-run, and constantly disrupt a team’s focus, he is a huge utility-based hero that can become the core of a well-formulated team.

Ana

The chaos of 5v5 makes playing Ana a little more demanding this time around. No longer will teams play so close together, perfectly primed to create a massive play with one well-aimed Biotic Grenade. Highly-mobile targets will need attention from all over the map and Ana players will need to be far more selective with how they use their grenades and Sleep Darts, as they might need them to survive a Genji flanking the support line.

However, the options she offers in a fight are significant and that is why she ranks high here. From being able to damage and heal at the same time, or use one of the only stuns in the current iteration of the game, Ana is a reliable support that thrives off of the smaller-scale game, able to hang further back and not worry about teams splitting up.

A-Tier

Orisa

Orisa marches into Overwatch 2 with a massive rework, swapping out her shield and crowd control abilities for a more skill-oriented javelin-based moveset that focuses on ranged attacks and keeping enemies at bay.

With objective-based game mode at the forefront of Overwatch 2, she has taken on a new life and become much stronger than she once was. She can feel a bit exposed at long-range, but her abilities and gun both benefit from being up close so she is a great first line of defence against the opposing team. She takes a bit of skill to use, but she is absolutely worth learning.

Moira

Moira continues to gain a lot of value from their team while also requiring very little from the player. While the more spread-out team compositions in Overwatch 2 will make it harder for them to heal everyone in a single blast, their biotic orbs continue to make her useful both as a damage dealer and as a healer, and their ultimate is devastating.

She can be shot down quite easily, but if you make use of their abilities they can dodge and get around and out of danger quite quickly thanks to their invisibility. Her orbs make her a bit trickier to use, but you can’t go wrong with the potential assistance Moira can offer.

Widowmaker

There was only ever one thing stopping Widowmaker from becoming the most dominant damage hero in Overwatch, and that was shields. Yet, while Overwatch 2 certainly lacks shields, it might still be a little too early to dawn the age of headshots.

Overwatch 2 has altered a lot of the map philosophy with additional cover and fewer open lanes, which makes her less of a reliable choice in a match. She is still capable of being a surprise for the enemy team, lurking on a rooftop and her ultimate is one of the best in the game. But, she isn’t quite at the top with a kit that is virtually identical to what she had all the way back in 2016.

Sigma

Sigma has always been a bit of a jack of all trades, providing a little bit of shield, a little bit of range damage, and a little bit of crowd control. His strength has always been his ability to deal with and respond to most problems by tapping into his diverse moveset, making him a great secondary tank pick with which to back up whichever more specific tank’s abilities factors best into your strategies.

With the pressure of being the only tank on your team, Sigma’s ability to do a little of everything works quite well and he can really lay into opponents. He is a rather hard character to get to grips with but effective none-the-less.

Roadhog

With a buff to his Whole Hog ultimate still Roadhog has gained a new level of effectiveness on top of being a fun character to play, and there’s certainly satisfaction to be had hooking a Tracer or a Soldier: 76 and then punishing them. You are going to want some shielding or a barrier tank to go along with him, as his support for your team isn’t actually that great.

But, what he lacks in support he is able to make up for with healing capability for himself and damage output from his shotgun. The hook also comes in handy when you want to remove an enemy from a brawl and focus on killing them yourself with your meaty health bar.

Overwatch 2 Tier List: Junker Queen can be seen

Junker Queen

Junker Queen came into Overwatch 2 and was really really strong. But, with some launch day tweaks and nerfs, she still is a strong contender in a match. With her shotgun and mobility as a tank, she is able to move around the map to a far greater degree than a number of the others in her class.

With powerful abilities and additional weapons at her side as well like her axe and jagged blade, she is able to deal a lot of damage which makes her a hugely formidable hero in the current stage of the game.

Overwatch 2 Tier List: Kiriko can be seen

Kiriko

Kiriko has started off strong in Overwatch 2 and she has already shown herself to be a strong character. Her ability to heal allies with bursts of talismans and mobility will her wall climb allows her to be one of the most mobile healers in the game.

And, when you add in her abilities like Swift Step, which allows you to instantly teleport to an ally, and Kitsune Rush, which boosts your movement and attack speed and you have a really strong support that is an entirely new take on the class for Overwatch 2.

Sojourn

Overwatch’s Sojourn joins the game with a rather good performance. But, since her initial debut in the beta she has beefed up a bit and managed to hold her own. As she stands, Sojourn has received two major rounds of buffs so far but doesn’t outshine Soldier: 76. Sojourn’s greatest strength, her mobility, works well with her additional disruptor grenade to disorient enemies as you move around the map.

While her alternate fire and ultimate aren’t quite the defining abilities of her kit, but they can help with Sojourn’s damage output during the moments when you aren’t dashing and sliding around the map. While not the strongest character, she is still a great hero to get acquainted with early in your Overwatch 2 journey.

Mercy

While Mercy may not be a preferred pick over hard-hitting skill-dependent support heroes like Lúcio or Ana, she nets commendation for the ease with which she can gain value for her team. After the Blizzard development team released an Overwatch 2 update for Zenyatta giving him his mighty Snap Kick, its attention turned to Mercy in the follow-up patch, who is still one of the most effective healers in the game. She is able to leap into a fight and out of it fast and can be the core of a team if she switches from hero to hero effectively.

She still feels a little limited due to her lack of damage-dealing options, but picking Mercy over a Tier 1 hero should yield results regardless. Her new movement options allow her to keep pace with more mobile damage heroes, providing a consistent damage boost while remaining out of harm’s way.

Zenyatta

With a patch introducing his mighty Snap Kick ability, Zenyatta is looking remarkably playable in Overwatch 2. The hero has always been a good damage dealer, and his healing orbs thrive in flanking and dive compositions as it allows his team’s damage heroes to receive healing even when taking off-angle approaches.

However, a lot of the weaknesses we saw with Zenyatta in the past have been relieved and he adds to the roster of really great supporting characters in Overwatch 2.

Bastion

The good news for Bastion is that he’s a far less passive character with a whole new rework. He’s now capable of dealing high damage without having to stay put the entire match, and his ultimate is a ton of fun and chaos, basically like a blend between Junkrat’s RIP-Tire and Doomfist’s Meteor Strike.

And, thanks to damage buffs and that new kit, Bastion has become a core part of many teams in Overwatch 2. His stopping power is what really makes him shine and being able to manoeuvre around the map with that same firepower really allows him to be one of the top DPS heroes.

Hanzo

Hanzo’s viability as a hero is extremely dependant on your skill with the chracter. He requires accuracy and precision to land his arrows and his ultimate isn’t as powerful as it once was. But, if you are a skilled Hanzo player you can be a big disruptor in a match.

He definitely isn’t as strong as some of the other damage heroes, but his wide range of abilities and the power that Hanzo can wield in the right hands, makes him a damage hero worth trying to master. But, just know that he requires skill to really do well with.

B-tier

Reaper

On maps with more challenging geography, like Circuit Royal, Reaper can look quite good in Overwatch 2. His ability to manifest into an enemy team’s backline and gun them down in seconds, as well as apply pressure on maps with hard corners, keeps him viable as a pick in certain situations. And with the many corridors and alleys, he can make his way around quickly and decimate tanks and enemies with his shotguns.

The rest of the time, however, Reaper is a sitting duck. He’s all too easily taken care of by tanks like Orisa, Soldier: 76, or even Lúcio, who can force Reaper out of cover and into the sights of ranged gunfire. While not in the bottom tier of DPS heroes, he’s definitely the least effective overall out of all of them.

Tracer

The strength of Overwatch’s mascot hero has always been mobility, so surely in the more mobility-oriented Overwatch 2, we’re due some kind of Tracer meta? Well, not exactly. To compensate for the lack of shields, as well as Tracer’s ability to easily burn down the health of tanks, the hero saw a considerable damage reduction on her Pulse Pistols from six to five HP per bullet. That doesn’t sound so bad until you account for damage falloff, as no Tracer is playing at point-blank range and surviving, so the actual damage per bullet is much lower.

This isn’t so bad when it comes to tanks, as there’s only one to deal with and Tracer’s still quite good at being a fly on the wall. However, this leaves her very exposed when dealing with other damage heroes, and even certain supports. This means Tracer players will need to be extra-restrained with the use of her Recall ability and more reliant than ever on using cover to stay out of the line of fire. Thankfully, a well-paced Tracer is still a force to be reckoned with.

Winston

After years of drifting near the bottom tiers of competitive Overwatch, Winston Jump Packs his way to the middle of the ladder in Overwatch 2. With one of the best shields still standing in the game, plus a new ranged fire being added to his Tesla Cannon, Winston has never looked more versatile as a tank pick.

But his bulkiness as a Tank does mean that he isn’t quite able to really stand out compared to Sigma below, or Orisa. He simply doesn’t fit the current meta which is a little slower and more thought-out rather than rushing into objectives.

Zarya

Zarya is another hero who should be doing a lot better in Overwatch 2 than she is. With a lack of shields at play, Zarya’s bubbles are appealing, capable of protecting heroes across the map during big plays and now even bubbling two allies at a time rather than one. Her beam has always been a solid counter to DPS heroes too.

However, with the emphasis on ranged damage in the game, she isn’t quite able to outshine some of the other heroes higher up in the list. She also can’t be used as a sole support and really needs a good surrounding team of heroes to help her abilities synergise well with other ultimates or abilities.

Cassidy

While Cassidy’s new grenade ability does give him the edge in 1v1 duels against fellow damage heroes, his kit lacks compared to what it once was. He is still an effective disruptor to a team and the variety offered by his weapon allows him to be versatile.

But, while his damage output is good though, especially against tanks, Cassidy feels like a hero waiting for something to change. He feels largely out of place in the current state of the game and we wouldn’t be surprised if we see Blizzard switch things up sooner rather than later.

 

Pharah

As ever, Pharah’s viability depends very much on your ability to play the character. At her best, she requires the constant attention of a Mercy, and that kind of resource drain requires a remarkable return on investment, so you need to be confident in your ability to avoid gunfire and get kills with her rockets.

She can be very effective at forcing Soldier: 76 and Tracer into the open – but for the most part, she just feels “fine”. With the focus on protective armour and extra temporary health in the current Overwatch 2 meta, her rockets and ultimate have become far less effective. She also has one of the more limited kits in the game.

Baptiste

For as long as it remains in his moveset, Baptiste’s greatest ability will forever be his Immortality Field, and thus his viability as a Support pick really depends on whether the map you’re playing bunches your team up enough to get value out of the anti-death frisbee.

On tighter maps, Baptiste triumphs as he allows his teammates to channel all their gunfire down a corridor while staying evenly healed. He is able to cover a wide range and often shines when you are on the defensive side. But, when the team is more scattered, he loses a lot of his worth on the team and his weapon doesn’t allow him to hold his own without team support either.

Reinhardt

If coming into Overwatch 2 you were afraid that Reinhardt would lose some of his main tank potency, fear not. Reinhardt’s strength as a hero pick has never simply come from his having the biggest, sturdiest shield – it also comes from how he creates space, pressures objectives, and delivers consistent damage to the enemy both at long range with his Fire Strikes and at short range with his big hammer.

But, with the less barrier-focused play of Overwatch 2 teams are far less reliant on him. And, the wider pool of heroes, including Sigma, Orisa, and Junker Queen, means that Reinhardt isn’t quite the face at the front of every group as he once was. But, playing him well can still mean you get some great plays.

Sombra

With Overwatch 2 shifting away from crowd control abilities, Sombra saw a lot of significant changes to her playstyle. Previously, she would either facilitate the removal of shields to initiate team fights or she would hack targets to leave enemies defenceless when her team commits to diving someone.

Now her hack only locks the target’s abilities for a short amount of time and her EMP only deals damage. As such she is drastically less of a disruptor than she once was. She feels like she has lost some of the core of what she once had as a character and as such doesn’t really stand out when compared to the many other damage heroes in the game.

Brigitte

Brigitte, queen of the stunlock, breaker of metagames, is no more. Overwatch 2 brings an end to her reign by removing almost all crowd control from the game, which includes Brigitte’s Shield Bash stun. Without it, Brigitte becomes a lot like many of the other tanks in the game.

While she has been deposed from her throne, she isn’t dead, however.  Brigitte can still ward off heroes attacking the backline with a well-placed bash and flail (her bash doing plenty of damage to compensate for its lack of stun). Her Rally ability is good for engaging teamfights and her cooldowns have been eased to ensure more healing for her team.

Doomfist

In one of the wildest turn of events coming into Overwatch 2, Doomfist was revealed to have beefed up so considerably that he now qualifies as a tank hero rather than a damage hero.

Sporting a meaty health increase and a brand-new damage-mitigating Power Block ability, Doomfist has suddenly become remarkably tough to kill. But, the abilities he does have don’t quite fit in with the meta that Overwatch 2 has going right now. He is still a strong choice, but there are other tanks that are able to outshine him.

C-tier

Wrecking Ball

There really isn’t a good reason for the lack of Wrecking Ball dominance in Overwatch 2. For where the game is, the character seems like an excellent alternative pick to other heroes, capable of getting fast picks across a wide area, displacing team compositions, and claiming space with his mines. However, he’s just not quite there right now and feels rather weak for all the sense his playstyle makes.

Soldier: 76 seems to be the most accountable for Wrecking Ball’s poor performance, capable of delivering devastating damage to the hamster while also easily evading and healing through any damage fired back at him. It’s possible also that Wrecking Ball’s adaptive shield ability no longer gets nearly the same value as it relies heavily on enemies being bunched together. It’s a shame the little guy has fallen hard since the last game, but hopefully, he will come back with a beefed-up suit at some point.

Echo

With so many powerful ranged heroes viable in Overwatch 2, Echo is going to struggle to deal damage without the constant attention of one of your team’s support characters. She also suffers on maps with too very open architecture, which thankfully Blizzard is moving away from.

That said, she plays well on maps with tricky terrain, but she is a very situational character and as such doesn’t feel quite like she has found her spot in the new game. We think she will eventually, but her kit and damage output right now still leaves a fair bit to be desired.

 

Junkrat

While intensely situational, it’s not entirely fair to say a Junkrat pick is a bad one in Overwatch 2. Plenty of the new maps provide little nooks and crannies from which Junkrat can safely punt his frags without poking his head out too much. He’s also remarkably capable in close-range duels, so as a counter to flank-heavy teams he’s not the worst pick.

But, Junkrat is so weak that he often becomes a liability, spending more time on the respawn screen than fighting enemies. His grenades and mines are able to disrupt and shake enemies’ concentration, but he isn’t nearly reliable enough to warrant being a core pick or DPS hero.

Ashe

The ability to deal damage through shields via her dynamite was what gave Ashe a tremendous pick advantage in Overwatch. With shields no longer in the way this time around, it’s hard to justify a two-step explosion onto a scattered enemy team when Soldier: 76’s Helix Rockets do the job in one.

On maps where teams play closer together, she can still get value by catching several targets in a single blast. But Ashe doesn’t feel like she has a place int he current iteration of the game and almost every DPS hero is better than her. So, she really feels in need of a buff or a kit switch up soon.

Torbjörn

Will Torbjörn ever get a break? With his wide hitbox that’s easily hit from range, his lack of mobility meaning he doesn’t qualify for any backline flank plays, and his general lack of strength in duels, it’s safe to say that Torbjörn is just not living his best life in the Overwatch 2 meta thus far.

In lower-tier match-ups, Torb’s turrets will still do consistent damage to an untrained Genji, but go up the ladder enough and most heroes will easily be able to take them out. He’s a super situational pick and the only strong ability he has is his ultimate which can provide accurate, powerful, sustained fire from a distance. So, while he isn’t quite at the bottom, he definitely isn’t a hero you should be choosing right now.

D-tier

 

Mei

Mei’s playstyle took an interesting turn in Overwatch 2, seeing her move from the very unique and sporadically viable crowd control hero to something akin to a short-range burst damage character like Reaper. But that move has dropped her value in the team significantly.

Like Reaper, she’s very situational, best used to disincentivise Winston and Reinhardt from wrecking up your backline with the ability to freeze people. But, with that removed she is now just one of the least effective damage heroes in the game. She still has Ice Walls, granting her team a little more utility in terms of closing down a lane but it isn’t really as useful in the current state of the game. As such, Mei needs a significant rework to ever get close to the top of this list.

Symmetra

A slight caveat for Symmetra in this bottom category is her ultra-specific dominance on Ilios Lighthouse. The metagame of who can get Symmetra’s turrets set up in the lighthouse first does seemingly have a place in Overwatch 2, and so it’s a little unfair to say Symmetra has no place in the game as she stands. However, one portion of one map does not an effective meta hero make.

Symmetra’s moveset leaves her wildly exposed and ineffective in a game dominated by mobile damage heroes and tanks. Her primary fire beam relies on melting shields to gain strength, something she just doesn’t have the option to use anymore. Her secondary fire was always quite weak and used only to put pressure on other team shield bunkers, which are also no longer a factor in Overwatch 2. Her turrets, are effective but a lot of the niche and place she found in Overwatch just doesn’t feel suited to where its sequel is right now.

That brings us up-to-date with the strength of the heroes currently in Overwatch 2. If you see a hero climbing the Overwatch 2 tier list then it might be time to switch up who you main, or maybe go after some of their rewards in the battle pass for the current season.