Overwatch 2 is a great shooter title with a lot of variety and an active fan base. For new players, it can be a bit intimidating though. This Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide will cover everything you need to know to get started and winning matches in Overwatch.
Overwatch tips for beginners have to cover everything about how the game works. There are tutorials in Overwatch and Overwatch 2. However, it doesn’t exactly explain the whole game. You’ll need to learn more about how the Overwatch characters for beginners and the rest of the game work first.
With Overwatch 2 going free to play, there has never been a better time to jump in. If you want to get off on the best foot, this is everything you need to know in an Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide:
Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide – The Basics
Overwatch is a game which is primarily played in teams. This is a basic fact of how it all works, but it’s also one of the most important areas where new and old players make mistakes. You can’t be selfish.
You have to engage with and play as a part of a team in Overwatch. If you’re not collaborating with other players, you won’t rise as high in the overwatch ranks as you possibly could.
Even players who can make great plays alone do better as part of a team. You can’t carry every game.
Pay attention to coms, and try and work with your teammates. If you’re new, people will help you move into the game through the team chat. This Overwatch beginner’s guide will cover the basics too.
Overwatch is a 5-v-5 team game. Players control unique heroes who each have a roster of different abilities. Alongside their differing weapons, each ability helps you to specialise in the role that you can play. Overwatch has unlimited ammo. What type it is though depends on what Hero you choose.
Learn the Heroes
The first thing to do when trying to get to know Overwatch is to get to know the heroes. These are the playable characters in Overwatch. Each has a different attack that they can use. These abilities are awarded throughout the game, learning when to use them and how they work is vital.
It isn’t just about learning the heroes that you’re going to play. Anyone can do that. To really get to know the game, you need to get to know all of the heroes. This gives key information about what you can expect in-game.
When you’re in a match, you have to know what abilities and options your opponents have open to you. If you know about what moves an opponent can take, you can better get to know what you’ll need to counter. It’s a lot at first, so don’t try to master everyone. Just play your picks, and try to remember when an opponent does something unexpected so you can drop into practise range and get to grips with that ability. We’ll cover some of this further in the Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide.
One key part of getting to know heroes is to look at how they interact with each other. Team compositions in Overwatch are important for getting the right combinations of Heroes. This can help you pick the right character to play. You should also look at counters for your main heroes, to know which opposing characters you need to avoid.
Access the Training Range and Get to Know the Heroes
The Training Range should be your first stop in getting to know the heroes of Overwatch. This is also called the practice range.
This area of the training room lets you select a hero and move around the training area. There are dummies of other heroes and moving targets to shoot at here.
Try out each one of the heroes and get to know their abilities, how they handle, and everything else. It can also be helpful to mix up the hero target to get a sense of different characters’ hitboxes.
Hero Roles – Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide
Hero Roles in Overwatch have become a much bigger part of the game since the original launched. It’s now basically unavoidable. You have to pick a role before you can even queue up! This makes it a key part of getting to know the game in an Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide.
The role determines what choice of character you have. All of the heroes fit into three categories. Two players are DPS, two play Support, and in Overwatch 2 only one other player is on Tank. This is down from 2 players in the original game.
These are the hero roles and what each really means.
The DPS characters in the game are based around dealing damage and getting kills. DPS stands for damage per second. The DPS heroes all have higher damage than the other characters in the game.
These Heroes have less health than others in most cases. This makes them a lot squishier. You have to try and balance the increased power output with lower health.
DPS characters often have mobility elements added into their kit. Such as Soldier 76. He has a unique sprint and others like Widowmaker have grappling hooks. This helps make DPS characters more mobile around the map even if they don’t have much health.
The main job of a DPS player is to rack up damage against enemies and get kills. However, it’s important to keep in mind that you still need to be strategic. You’ll want to try and get kills that advance your team’s objective, not just grab random kills around the map.
A key part of decent DPS gameplay is to stay alive in the game. That’s a bit in-depth for an Overwatch beginner’s guide in terms of each hero. However, there are some bits to keep in mind.
- You’re prone to get picked off as these characters and an easy target.
- Try not to just rush into conflicts by yourself.
- You’ll need to coordinate with your team. Try not to chase kills if players leave the area where your team are. They’re taking you away from the area where you can apply the most pressure.
How you approach firefights will depend on which hero you’re playing as. Some are better for rushing in like Genji, but others need to engage from the flanks.
Tanks are the smallest Overwatch 2 role. They’ve moved down to one hero per team instead of two. These characters have higher health and can ‘tank’ a lot of damage before they get taken down. Tank characters control a lot of the flow of action. Each is unique, but there are some qualities that apply across tank gameplay in an Overwatch beginner’s guide.
The utilities of Tank heroes often help them with crowd control and zoning. They have abilities like shields that can be manoeuvred to control the flow of players. The biggest benefit to most tanks is their large HP. The downside is their huge hitbox.
You need to put a lot of damage in to take down a tank character, but they’re pretty easy to hit. They also don’t have the same high damage as DPS characters. This makes them less useful for getting kills.
Mobility can vary between tank characters. Some of them are very slow with telegraphed moves. However, others have some decent mobility like Winston’s jumps. Or Wrecking Ball Overwatch 2 abilities.
Tanks are an important role. They’re also one of the more complex ones now that there’s only one per team. If you’re playing tank, you’ll need to keep in communication with your allies and make sure you’re coordinating pushers. There’s a lot more to tanks, but that’s the basics for an Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide.
The Support role or healers are a crucial element of every team in Overwatch. However, they’re often an underappreciated role! A lot of players don’t like playing support, but decent support can elevate a team.
Supports’ main job is often to heal their own team or applying damage boosts. This can support FPS or tank heroes when they’re pushing in against enemies. A well-utilized support can mean evenly-matched players come out ahead thanks to their boosts and heals. Looking at Mercy Overwatch 2 kit or Baptiste, you can see how diverse supports can be though.
When playing support your main job is to heal your team, and support them. However, this doesn’t mean you should be getting yourself killed to keep others alive. You need to be able to assess the current action and if keeping another player alive at your own expense will be better for this effort than the other way around.
Most healers have the possibilities to give out a bit of damage. They’re not matching up with tanks or DPS, but they can defend themselves.
When playing as support, you need to be paying a lot of attention to the rest of your team. You’ll need to make sure you’re following. That you know when they need healing, and when you’ll need to pull back. Like the others, there’s more to this role. But those are the basics for an Overwatch beginner’s guide.
Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide – Abilities
These are how the abilities in Overwatch are broken up:
- Passive – These abilities are a key part of a Heroes kit. They’re active at all times and they’re innate to the hero that you’re playing as. These abilities can’t be hacked at all.
- Normal Abilities – These are usually two abilities which give some extra utility in the game. They’re active with keys and have a cooldown.
- Ultimate Abilities – Ultimates are the highest level of ability. These have to be charged up before you can use them. They have the biggest effect.
Those are the three types. The different heroes in the game each have unique abilities that you’ll need to get to know. That’s for their specific Hero guides though, not a general Overwatch beginner’s guide.
Overwatch has quite a few different game modes. They aren’t separated out into different rotations. Instead, you get one of the five core game modes when you play comp or quick play. You’ll have to learn the ins and outs of each of them to be confident in every game that you play. These are all of the game modes in an Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide:
- This is an asymmetrical attack or defence mode.
- The goal is to capture two points, consecutively not at the same team.
- Teams will have to reach the point and capture it by standing on it with no enemies present.
- The attacking team wins if they capture both in the time limit.
- The defending team wins if they don’t.
- The time limit increases if you capture the first point, and your spawns will move.
- This is a best-of-three game mode.
- Players have to try and capture a central point in the game for three rounds.
- Standing on the point without any enemies nearby helps you to progress to 100% in this mode.
- The first team to hit 100% wins.
- This is an asymmetrical attack/defence game made centred around a payload.
- The attacking team has to escort a payload across a track through the map till the end.
- The defending player are trying to stall the cart. It doesn’t move with enemies on it.
- There are multiple checkpoints that change spawn and add time.
- This is an asymmetrical attack/defence game mode.
- Players are trying to capture a point, followed by a payload. IT’S A Combination of the other two game modes.
- In push, teams are attempting to get control of a robot which pushes an objective to the enemy’s base.
- The team wins when it reaches the spawn of the enemy team.
Those are the core modes in the standard area. On top of that, there are things like Deathmatch and Capture the Flag. There’s also Arcade where you can play a whole host of fun side-games. Some can even help you improve your skills. We’ll get more game modes as the game progresses through its road map after release.
Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide to Gameplay
Target priority is a part of Overwatch which falls under game sense. This is where you need to figure out which target is the one that it is best to attack at any one time. You won’t always be able to sweep a team in an attack. You need to prioritize. You’ll need to go for the right targets.
In a situation where you likely can only survive long enough to take out one player, it’s often better to try and isolate the enemy team. If there’s a DPS and a tank, and your team has more players alive. Go for the DPS wherever possible. Isolating the tank can put the rest of your team in a much better position. The DPS characters can do more damage to your team when left alive than the tank can.
That’s not a hard rule though. It comes down to determining which target will do the most damage. Along with what they can contribute to large-scale full team fights. Taking out their healers can seriously set them back. That sets you up to be able to take out the higher value damage outputters. It’s easier as they aren’t being backed up.
This applies to crowd and map control too. If some enemy players are retreating but others are flanking around your side, cutting off the flanks helps you keep control of the zone in play.
Target priority is a bigger topic. Although, that covers an intro for the Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide.
Flanking and Map Knowledge
One of the most important parts of mastering a Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide, is to get to know each of the maps. Along with how players flow through them. That’s a bit in-depth for a Overwatch beginner\s guide, so here we’ll cover one of the most important topics for everyone to get their heads around to get ahead in map knowledge. Flanking.
Maps in Overwatch are usually arranged in typical lane fashion. They’re similar to what you’ve probably seen in other games. Players have limited routes to flow from their spawn point to where the action is.
Flanks are the side lanes which allow players to get along the map without heading down the main lane for combat. These flanks have to be defended. If you allow enemy teams to flow freely through them, you’ll lose control of the map pretty quickly.
Keep a tank or a sharp eye out for flanking. Depending on what map you’re on, flankers will really change a game’s balance around if you don’t watch for them.
Certain Heroes are particularly strong for flankers, so this is something to think about when choosing your Hero.
Map knowledge can be circumstantial to a hero. Mercy’s superjumps don’t need the same knowledge as Ball’s ground pound. Dig into each hero and experiment on the maps, there’s a lot more beyond an Overwatch 2 beginner’s guide.
Team Comps – Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide
Team comps or team composition can be tricky to get your head around at first. Once you get to know the game, it’s basic. This is which set of heroes that you pick. Some combinations of heroes work much better together than others.
Ideally, you should be thinking about which combinations of characters make for the best team rather than just which one you want to play.
The heroes that have the best synergy together change as the game develops. You’ll have to keep an eye on Overwatch best comps and Overwatch 2 tier list to see which combinations are the best at any one time.
In the past, roles weren’t enforced so this was a lot more important. Now that you’re forced to balance evenly between tank healer and DPS, it isn’t as much of a problem. Specific comps that are on top of the meta change quickly, but keep this in mind.
Hero Counters – Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide
Another important thing to think about when picking a character is which hero the enemy is playing. Various heroes work as effective counters to other heroes. You can choose which hero to use based on what best counters the opposing team.
Switching around your hero to mix up tactics can help you stay a step ahead of the competition. This isn’t essential. However, there are a few reasons to really think about it.
If one hero has completely rolled your team, it’s a good idea to switch to a counter to solve the problem. Even meta comps have weak points. There’s always a hero that can stomp the opposing set-up, since the roster is huge now. Being flexible is going to be important.
Which heroes counter which vary from season to season. A full guide to Overwatch 2 counters can help you figure out which to switch to. If the best Widow players are always rolling you, it’s time to switch to a proper counter.
Overwatch 2 Beginner’s Guide – Tips and Tricks
We have a full guide to Overwatch 2 beginner tips and tricks. However, if you want the quick rundown of the more core things to know, these are some picks:
- Queue Times – These can be bad in Overwatch. Take the time to try stuff out in the practice mode, don’t just jump to a different role because of a queue.
- Use the Practise Range – This is key. Go in there, try out every hero. Really getting to grips with everyone’s abilities and workings is the best way to improve and stop getting outplayed by not knowing the opposition well enough.
- Communication and Planning – Just rushing in won’t work as well as executing a decent plan. Communicate with teammates and move in a measured way.
- Focus on a Few Characters – Getting to know what all the characters are capable of is one thing. When it comes to playing yourself though, you’ll need to get to grips with a few characters first. Pick a few to main that you can use.
- Don’t Focus on One Character – A main hero is great. But sometimes they’re already picked, or you’re getting countered too easily. Having a few mains avoids this.
- Play the Objective – Kills work if they further your team. But don’t forget to play the objective.