Overwatch 12/06/2016 (4W-5L)

Reflections on my competitive matches. Feel free to disagree/agree/leave suggestions/leave comments. But please be constructive, as I’m learning and admittedly not the best player around. :)

King’s Row (L) : Lucio →Pharah
First match of the night was King’s Row, which I dread on Defense but love on Attack. (The walk back is SO long. If Symmetra weren’t so frowned upon, she’d be great for this on Defense.)

(Left): Our team setup and ranks. (Mid): Decided to go Lucio since someone went Pharah. (Right): My stats near the end of the game. 54% hit accuracy is pretty average for me, and I had middling stats considering I went Support → DPS. Considering how late it is in the map, my general stats were pretty below average for me.

We started on Defense, and since someone locked in Pharah pretty quickly I decided to pick Lucio. He tends to be a pretty valuable support role, and his speed boost is a valuable asset taxi-ing some characters back from spawn. (Especially since it’s so far.) We were decent on Defense, but for whatever reason we weren’t getting many picks and were quickly overwhelmed. As Lucio I probably should’ve played a little more defensively and relied on my speed to tap the point in and out. As it were, we lost on Defense, although we fought back a little. We held the third point fairly decently, but as Lucio I died more than I wanted to. Again, an error in my playing style as I should’ve been more defensive. Our DPS roles weren’t doing fantastic either, so getting picks was difficult. We probably could’ve used a Reaper to cut through the tanks and flank them.

On Attack I locked in Pharah super quick. We did well through the first point, and pushed the payload very quickly. As Pharah I did mediocre at best. I was getting mowed down a lot by the Soldier, which was noted by the other teammates and put pressure on the McCree to deal with the situation. Unfortunately he didn’t, and Pharah wasn’t working out for me, so I switched to Soldier. I struggled a lot with callouts in this game, in that I felt no one especially listened to my callouts on where enemy teammates were. There was an instance in which a Soldier was flanking us as we were approaching the final point, and I called out the Soldier’s placement. I ended up struggling with him 1v1 and couldn’t finish him off, so he ended up picking off a lot of characters from behind while they were also dealing with enemies coming back from respawn.

Callouts are so important in a team based game like Overwatch. While you don’t have to exactly answer to every single callout, I think it’s important that you don’t leave too many teammates alone to solo 1v1. You really want to ensure you get that pick, so one or two folks should try to head out and tend to that person’s callout. On top of that my Lucio plays are overly aggressive, and I need to learn how to edit my actions and play much more defensively on a Defense point. I should also practice swapping my modes in between speed and heals when I’m by myself or when teammates are already having steady heals.

Volskaya (W): Pharah
I was frustrated at my last match and felt like I needed redemption as well as ensuring we get good picks for the game.

(Left): Locked in Pharah super fast to redeem myself. (Mid): Wasn’t doing great, but the team really pulled through. Soldier really held his own, and the Mercy was great. (Right): We completely shut them out.

I struggled staying alive through our first Attack round. Crossing through that major choke as Pharah can be really tricky, as the walls are high enough where you can’t casually glide over (like in Hanamura or Eich), and that small window on the right is incredibly obvious from the Defense view. Without flanking, my best bet in staying alive and getting good angles for picks is on the ground behind a shield. Despite my issues with that, we took over the first point incredibly quickly, and the second point followed not too long after that. It was a straightforward win, but I felt I didn’t do as well with Pharah. Below average accuracy and clumsy ults made my play suffer a little, but ultimately the team was solid enough to combat any shortcomings.

On Defense we went with the same set up since it was so strong for us on Attack. Pharah on Defense is so squishy, and easily topples. On a map like Volskaya, where the run is pretty far, it’s essential that Pharah stays alive. Sure enough I stayed far back, almost behind the point, and kept an eye on flankers and shot rockets from a distance. It was also important for me to be cognizant of where I poked my head out, and never appear in the same area twice in a row in case their hitscans could read my movements. I didn’t have any strong final blows early on, but was able to pick enough at the enemies to keep them at bay. As they pushed forward, the Mercy was incredibly essential in giving me time and space to make vital picks off of their tanks and healers. We were able to completely shut them off from the second point and take the win.

Generally when approaching Attack on Volskaya, I have to play cautiously. The open skies are great once you get past the choke, but there are so many directions their defensive DPSs can pick you down, especially from a comparable high ground. Defense was really only redeemed for me by the fact our Mercy was incredibly attentive and knew the reads on switching from power boost to heals.

Lijiang Tower (L): Mercy →Zenyatta
I’m also not a huge fan of KotH maps. (Do I even like this game?) Lijiang is a hit/miss with me in terms of being Pharah friendly. While one map with the open waters and bridges are great because you can boop people off, each point is in a pretty tight indoor space. This makes it so incredibly difficult for Pharah to be properly utilized as a high-ground ranged character.

(Top L): Our team set up. (Top R): Not a very confident Pharah player in KotH maps so I went with Mercy instead. (Bottom L): The other team had strong offense games going on, and their tanks were staying alive much longer than they should have. I was getting picked a lot, so I had poor Res numbers. Even with gold healing I felt like anything less than 5 digits is below average. (Bottom R): Ultimately switched to Zenyatta, but he’s slow and debuffs won’t get you anywhere if the team can’t get picks. Our Pharah did fine, but we only really had 1 strong DPS in the lineup. I low key blame the Torb.

Since I was adverse to playing Pharah in those kinds of conditions, I went with Mercy instead and hoped I could help provide a good boost of heals and support our Pharah at the time. We almost had the first point, but a lack of coordination and inability to get strong picks really screwed us over. This continued for the rest of the games until we went 0–3 in the match itself. As Mercy I definitely think I missed some key Res situations, especially since I end up doubting myself on whether or not it was time. However, I was able to stay alive for a decent amount of time and keep our Pharah operating as much as possible.

Ultimately what really screwed us over, IMO, is the fact we had a Torbjorn. Not that he was especially bad or anything, but he played the character very uniquely. He would build a turret, completely abandon it, and moved forward in the game as a DPS-type character. For a map style like KotH, I felt like it was a poor strategic choice to play someone like Torb even if they had a ton of hours as that character. His strongest asset is his turret, and if you aren’t utilizing that in some capacity I’m doubtful of how much value you’ll provide to the team.

At the third point I tried to switch to Zenyatta to help debuff enemies for easier pickings, but our team was generally pretty poor on picks. On top of that we kept crossing the open bridge to get to the point, and with the other Pharah having her boops + Lucio’s boops + Winston’s ult boop, a lot of us were casualties of those environmental kills. I would generally suggest trying to take the narrow back corridor over any other part of the map to approach.

Hanamura (W): Pharah
My second solo queue game of the night. No screenshots for this unfortunately, but I really felt my Pharah game work its magic in this match.

We started on Defense and I locked in Pharah pretty late into character selection. Oddly enough no one was especially eager to play DPS, which is rare for Overwatch at this level. I got a lot of good picks during our first point hold, but ultimately fell to a very skilled Widowmaker (who sadly became the brunt of the other team’s frustrations, despite the fact they were really keeping us on our toes). Considering how slow Pharah is, and how long the walk back is, I had to really rely on our tanks and other teammates to hold the choke without considerable damage coming through. We lost the point after the 3rd push, in which our DPS went down first and our tanks quickly went after them.

However, while defending the second point, we did have spawn advantage and the Widowmaker had poorer line of sight. I was able to pick her off by strategically moving and defending erratically from one side of the point to another. Moving from left, back, left, right, back, left, back, left, right, etc. made it hard for the Widow to figure out where I was and to hide from her in pockets of space, while picking off other tricklers like D.Va and Junkrat. They got a hitscan character at some point (Soldier, I believe?) but he often ran in solo and ended up getting mowed down anyways. During their major pushes their Roadhog and D.Va kept focusing on other characters while I poked them from above and had myself or others finish them off. It was overall a successive hold.

On Attack we had to keep our heads down from the Widow again, who refused to change. They defended their choice by the fact they have Golds in everything, but tbh I think they could’ve used with more support at the point vs. further back. Their Soldier went down extremely fast, with the Rein being a little too aggro and constantly dropping his shields and pointing it away from the choke to protect himself, vs. trusting his team to rely on flankers and side pokers. After 2–3 picks we rushed in, and even though they had a Symmetra to help teleport them back in, we were able to overwhelm them and keep them at bay.

The second point took a little more work to take over, and we got it with about 20 seconds left to spare. Basically some of them panicked and just starting switching off to high-damage characters, like Bastion, and then setting up at very open spots that left him vulnerable to me. There was also a pesky Tracer that jumped in, but was constantly mowed down by the team. Overall we were strong, and despite poor communication (in which I was the only one on mic) we were able to quick comm essential things like ults.

Other Game Summaries
Dorado (L): [D] Pharah → Junkrat | [A] Pharah
Lost 2/3. They had a legitimately good Pharah, and our Soldier/hitscan player wasn’t addressing her properly. She was able to get 2–3 midairs on me as Pharah, and near the middle towards the second point I switched to Junkrat to try to control the area more and spread damage. Weak defense and offense became our downfall, as Pharah flanked us a lot and I don’t have a ton of experience aiming for air-characters as Junkrat.

Numbani (L): [D] Lucio → [A] Pharah → [D] Lucio
Lost 3/4. We went into a tie breaker. We couldn’t hold defense properly, and I blame it on poor communication and staggered spawns. There was a lot of firepower coming from them and our tanks couldn’t handle it without our DPSs getting strong picks. On Attack I went Pharah to solve that, and we were able to barely make it. I started off poorly, but quickly ranked up to gold elims on our Attack push and got a lot of strong ult kills to stagger their spawns. We went to a 3 minute defense hold and couldn’t keep up with the firepower of the other team.

Route 66 (W): [A] Pharah → [D] Pharah → Soldier
Won 3/2. We had a strong offense game during this match. Despite the hesitation of having a Sombra on the team, they actually exceeded all expectations and combo’d ults incredibly well. She would take down all their shields, and with Zarya’s ult we were able to pick them a lot. Defense was a little trickier, as as they were really strong in pushing forward. However it came down to the last point and seeing as how Pharah wasn’t working out with their Soldier picking me off, I switched to Soldier to deal with the Pharah who was harassing us. I didn’t contribute a ton towards the end since I had issues aiming from Roadhog ults and Lucio boops, but helped finish off some picks and keep them at bay. The team was great on holding the line defensively, so I was able to afford a little clumsiness.

Volskaya (W): [A] Pharah → [D] Lucio
This game went incredibly well for us. Their team pushed way too far forward past the choke, so we were able to pick off 2–3 of them and then mow through the rest easily. I did okay as Pharah on Attack, but was able to get some strong picks to cinch the game. We were occasionally down one tank since the Rein would switch to Widowmaker, but they were a valuable asset in getting some picks and we did fine as long as we played a little safer than usual. Everyone was responsive to this comp change and were able to accommodate for it well. On Defense I switched to Lucio, since I’m not a huge fan of Defensive Pharah, and we were able to hold them off the second point. However our team, as one note of criticism, were keen on aggressively pushing too forward past the main choke in the second point. It worked out in the end since they were able to get poke damage on Rein while we finished him off. As Lucio+Pharah I was able to keep a gold in Objective Kills, if that’s any indication of how forward our team pushed. One of the players was also a little too critical and easy to pass judgement on my Lucio gameplay, as he blamed me for not ulting when I was a victim of a Rein’s earth shatter. Remember folks, be nice to your teammates. Trust them and be nice, even if they don’t 100% deserve it, because its easier to respond to changes and criticisms when you’re nice. (Not a guarantee, but a good rule of thumb.)

Watchpoint Gibralter (L): [A] Lucio→ [D] Lucio
Lost 1/2. There was a mess of problems with this game. Our DPSs were doing fine, but weren’t handling flankers very well and often got themselves killed when running off on their own. It made the choke in between the first and second points incredibly difficult. The issues with Defense was the same, as the team was mostly unresponsive (except one guy), and kept spreading themselves out thin to get picked off by enemy teammates. My Lucio play was okay. I would say I survived longer than usual and played better as a whole.

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