With the release of Overwatch 2, the cast of selectable heroes has ballooned to over 30 distinct characters spread between the three major roles. Even for veteran players, this leaves a ton of abilities, tactics, counters, and compositions to try and keep straight. If you’re a new player, the choices will easily feel overwhelming. It can be simple enough to narrow down what class of hero you want to focus on, whether it be Tank, Support, or Damage, but even within those boundaries, you have a ton of variations.
While your mileage will certainly vary on which hero you consider to be “best,” and the game’s meta will shift with any update and balance changes, there are always going to be a select few that are top-tier for that time. As of the current state of Overwatch 2, these are the best heroes you should at least consider for each role, which we will update as the game’s meta adjusts and changes over time.
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Tanks have perhaps been given the biggest change with Overwatch 2 thanks to being limited to just one per team as opposed to two in the first game. That makes a strong Tank extremely important for your team since they will have to essentially pull double duty. To compensate, most have been buffed to a decent degree, though some serve the team better solo than others.
D.VA is just your all-around solid choice for a tank. She has a good balance of offensive options, ways to support the team, and good mobility. Her Defense Matrix has been given a buff with Overwatch 2, allowing it to absorb more damage and help cover your team better, as well as having a higher base HP. She does have less armor, but her primary weapons are not only more accurate, but they don’t slow her down as much when firing, either. Best of all, however, is that her Boost ability damage was more than doubled.
A brand new Tank in Overwatch 2, Junker Queen is already proving to be an extremely powerful asset to most teams. She is a little more limited than D.VA in the sense that her primary weapon, a shotgun, has limited range, but if an enemy is in that range, they’re done for. Plus, her kit is filled with abilities to either bring enemies in close or get close herself. While she really only has her Commanding Shout ability to help out others, all her other abilities to restore health and deal damage make her very hard to kill and a massive target for the other team.
Back again from the first game, Orisa has also undergone some big changes for Overwatch 2. She still has her main cannon that can overheat, but the blasts now start out large and gradually shrink over distance, making her more dangerous the closer she gets. She no longer has the Halt secondary fire and now has Energy Javelin, which hurls a javelin at an enemy that can knock them back and stun them for a short time. Protective Barrier is also replaced with Javelin Spin, which allows her to block incoming projectiles, move faster, and slap away enemies if they collide with it. Finally, her Fortify has been buffed to give her 125 temporary HP but slow her down by 20%. Her ultimate was also changed to Terra Surge, which activates her Fortify ability as well as sucks in enemies, and then unleashes a final attack.
While Tanks are up on the frontlines blocking and protecting the team, Support are right behind, making sure they, and your Damage heroes, are staying healthy and buffed as much as possible. There are still two Supports per team, so there is some more leniency on who to pick depending on the other Support, but generally, you want to play heroes that can help out in as many ways as possible or are very specifically focused on one area.
Another brand new addition to Overwatch 2, Kiriko may end up settling lower in the meta over time, but for the moment, she is absolutely crushing it as the game’s top Support hero. It’s easy to see why when you look at everything she can do. She has great healing potential that doesn’t require her to completely focus on teammates, high mobility thanks to her ability to climb walls, and can even do great damage if you’re able to land headshots with her kunai. Add in her temporary invulnerability with the Protection Suzu and ability to teleport to any teammate in an instant, and a skilled Kiriko can almost act as a solo Support.
Lucio remains an easy pick to slot in with any team. He will passively either heal or grant a speed buff to any teammates around him, giving him more utility than a simple healer, plus allowing him to still participate in fights. That speed buff, in particular, is more important than many new players may realize since the majority of Overwatch 2‘s game types involve getting to different points on the map quickly. His ultimate is still outrageously strong as well, granting 750 HP so your team can survive that hard push.
Finally, we can’t overlook the face of the Support class since the game’s beginning: Mercy. She’s by far the most focused Support hero, almost exclusively centered around direct healing. However, she has been given some changes for Overwatch 2 that help her out. While using Guardian Angel, for example, if you hit Crouch, you will launch straight up in the air, and you can slow her descent by a greater degree with Angelic Descent. Her self-healing has also been increased, making her an overall harder-to-kill and more mobile healer.
Last, but almost certainly the most popular class, is Damage. These are the killers. If you want to get into the action, rack up kills, and play Overwatch 2 as close to a traditional shooter as possible, these are the heroes to look at. That being said, Overwatch 2 isn’t a traditional shooter, meaning a strong gun isn’t the most important factor.
Genji was top-tier in Overwatch and remains in the top spot (for now) in Overwatch 2. Perhaps more than anyone else, Genji has benefited the most from all the sweeping changes that came with Overwatch 2 thanks to fewer crowd-control and stuns being in the game. His only real weakness is his low HP, but Genji has so many ways to overcome that, such as his insane mobility and ability to simply reflect damage back to the sender. He has just so much damage potential, even before you consider his ultimate, which makes him nearly unstoppable. Plus, the new Damage Passive, which gives a buff to mobility and reload speed after getting an elimination, only makes him stronger the better you perform.
The face of the first game wasn’t left behind for the sequel. This time-bending hero is still an absolute monster in the Damage class, though perhaps a little more technical than Genji. She is just as mobile, but in her own way, thanks to her teleports and ability to rewind herself out of a bad situation, making her a perfect hit-and-run-style hero. Her ultimate is also very deadly but also trickier and more dangerous since you have to land the bomb close to, or ideally on, an enemy. The explosion can also harm Tracer, who is very squishy, meaning you don’t want to be close when it does go off. Otherwise, Tracer is nearly identical to how she was in the original.
Pharah, somewhat more than other Damage classes, has received a few alterations between games. She’s still the same core hero, utilizing her rockets and Jump Jet ability to deal concentrated damage from above. A small but meaningful change to her rockets is that you can reload a quarter-second faster if you use every rocket before reloading. Her Concussive Blast also has been buffed to deal 30 damage but has a greater knockback effect when it hits an enemy directly, making it even more deadly near the edges of maps. Otherwise, Pharah is just a pain for almost all other classes to deal with and very hard to take down, plus is one of the easier Damage class heroes for new players to pick up and understand.
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