A common complaint articulated by newcomers to Overwatch 2 is how overwhelming the hero shooter can be. Over 30 heroes with different abilities and roles, unusual game modes, and shifting objectives – this isn’t your average multiplayer FPS fare, and there’s a lot to take in. To ease your first few days with Overwatch 2, we’ve compiled some choice beginners tips for a frustration-free introduction to the game.
Before we dive in, many of these recommendations will ring as basic fundamentals for experienced Overwatch players. That’s not our target audience here. We’re casting a wider net. These tips are for the fresh-faced beginners and casual FPS fans enticed by the pivot to free-to-play giving Overwatch 2 a go for the first time.
Try Every Hero then Stick to 2-3
Hero choice paralysis is a problem that often affects new players. Try out a selection heroes to see which ones suit your playstyle, then concentrate your efforts on learning the ins and outs of 2 to 3 of them, ideally one for each role.
Testing out all heroes immediately isn’t possible due to Blizzard’s new guided First Time User Restriction, which limits who you can play. In a sense, this slims down the pool of heroes you need to learn, progressively unlocking more as you play more games. Based on what’s available when you first fire up Overwatch 2 as a beginner, here are our tips for the best starter heroes for each role:
- Damage – Soldier: 76, Reaper
- Support – Lucio, Moira
- Tank – Reinhardt
Familiarize Yourself with All Maps and Overwatch 2 Game Modes
One of the best Overwatch 2 tips for beginners is to familiarize yourself with the maps and modes that make up the game. Unlike most FPS, where multiplayer matches involve variations on the classic deathmatch formula, Overwatch 2 features a range of unique modes, often based on objective control and payload escorts. When you jump into Quick Play and eventually Competitive Play, these modes are on rotation, so getting a firm grasp of how each one works and what you’re expected to do to win is crucial.
- Assault – A team of attackers battle to capture a set of objectives, while defenders must keep the attackers at bay until a timer runs out.
- Control – Opposing teams duke it out to secure a single objective. The first team to win two rounds wins.
- Capture the Flag – An FPS classic; teams must capture the enemy’s flag while protecting their own.
- Deathmatch – A free-for-all kill fest. The player with the most eliminations wins.
- Elimination – Two teams face each other, the first to eliminate all the opposing team wins.
- Escort – One team is tasked with escorting a payload to set location. Defenders must stop them in their tracks and prevent delivery of the payload.
- Hybrid – A mash-up between Escort and Assault, a team of attackers must capture a payload and safely escort it to a set location, while defenders try to hold them back.
- Push – A new mode introduced for Overwatch 2’s launch, teams must capture and escort a mobile robot to push a payload towards a series of checkpoints. Whichever team reaches the enemy’s spawn point first wins.
- Team Deathmatch – A team-based version of deathmatch. The team with the highest kill score wins.
The same goes for maps. Solid knowledge of layouts, choke points, angles, and so on can turn an average player into a skilled one. With 30 maps, learning the intricacies of each is no small feat. Playing games and paying attention as you go, you’ll progressively learn how to use the environment to your advantage. You can explore maps in custom games without enemies breathing down your neck or a pesky timer rushing you along to get a better sense of what each one offers.
Spend Time in the Practice Range/Play Custom Games With Bots
During Overwatch 2’s mandatory tutorial, you’ll spend some time in the Practice Range. It can be tempting to ignore it from there onward, but it’s a valuable tool for testing new characters, getting to grips with mechanics, and trialing new settings. Similarly, Practice vs. AI and Custom Games with AI offer a real-game feel without the pressure and expectation of playing with/against other players.
Tweak Settings to Find What Works for You
Like any FPS worth its salt, Overwatch 2 features a broad range of customizable settings covering performance, controls, HUD, and even the crosshair. Blizzard has tried to create a configuration for the average play with Overwatch 2’s default settings, but they won’t suit everyone.
It’s worth taking some time to sift through these settings, trialing changes in the Practice Range, then tweaking them until you find a configuration you feel comfortable using. This is especially relevant if you use an older rig that sits on or near the minimum system requirements. Turning down graphical settings to get a frame rate bump can improve your experience and heighten your chances of success in-game.
Strength in Numbers
Overwatch 2 games are won as a team but often lost alone. Many first-timers fall into the trap of thinking they can take on an enemy team 1v5 and come out on top. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Curb your instinct to charge in guns blazing and play as a team. Move and engage with your teammates. If an ally hero falls, regroup and move as a unit. If your entire team gets wiped out, don’t return to an objective alone straight from the spawn point; instead, wait for your team. Until you get a firm grip on how to use individual heroes to change the tide of a fight, working as one defensively-minded unit tends to play out best.
While jumping into an Overwatch 2 voice chat isn’t for the easily-fazed, communication is integral to winning games. Whether you prefer typing or speaking, keep a steady back and forth with teammates. Not only will this help with coordination and teamwork, but you’ll likely pick up some valuable tips and tricks from more experienced players and maybe find like-minded people to team up with for future games.
Similarly, learn and use the ping system, especially if you’d rather avoid voice chat. It’s brand new for Overwatch 2 and allows players to trigger a range of callouts – enemy location, healing requests, fallback prompts, and even a countdown to time attacks and coordinate ultimates.
Mute Disruptive Players
While communication is critical for beginners to master in Overwatch 2, you’ll invariably come across sketchy characters more interested in spoiling your fun than being helpful or working as a team. Don’t hesitate to mute disruptive players. Friendly banter can quickly turn to abuse, and no one’s got time for that.
We hope these Overwatch 2 beginners’ tips and tricks prove helpful. The best advice we can give is to play as much as you can; nothing beats repetition to get ahead in a new game.
Overwatch 2 – Tips and Tricks for Beginners FAQ
How to unlock Overwatch 2 Competitive Play?
To unlock competitive play, or ranked as its commonly referred to, you’ll need to play and win a total of 50 Quick Play Matches.
What Are the Best Overwatch 2 Heroes for Beginners?
Lucio – Simple, versatile, and mobile, Lucio guarantees a fun time whether you’re a seasoned player or a green newcomer. Part of Lucio’s appeal to beginners is his straightforward and intuitive kit, which means this hero adds value to any team composition by simply being on the map.
Moira – If you’re not confident about your aim and want a simple but effective tool kit, Moira is among the best support heroes for beginners in Overwatch 2. The beauty of Moira is that however you use her abilities, you’re either damaging enemies or healing allies.
Soldier: 76 – A cookie-cutter stereotype of a traditional FPS character, Soldier: 76 is an excellent option for players transitioning to Overwatch 2 from other FPS shooters daunted by the game’s more exotic characters.
Reinhardt – Reinhardt is hard to get wrong: find the fight, deploy your shield, and swing your hammer when an enemy gets too close. His Barrier Field deploys a chunky shield, protecting teammates from oncoming fire, while his generous health bar ensures he stays alive even in the hands of inexperienced players.