Skulz’s Overwatch Competitive Hero Tier List March 2018

Skulz’s Overwatch Competitive Hero Tier List March 2018

The Overwatch Competitive Hero Tier List for March 2018 is ready. All the heroes are split in groups based on their popularity in pro games.

All heroes are arranged in six tiers based on their time played in pro games. The usage rate in each map is helpful to understand in which battlefield a hero shines the most.

The requisites for each tier never change. The goal is offering a neutral comparison that shows how the meta evolves over time.

The win rate has no effect on the tiers. The tiers depend only on the hero usage time, and aren't affected either by the win rate of a hero or by their performance in pub matches.

No personal opinions. Every month, we will see which heroes raised or declined in rank solely through the statistics.

The tier list includes all matches played from March 1st to 28th.

Click an image to zoom it.

Tier S

Tier 1

Tier 2

Tier 3

Tier 4

Tier 5

The tiers are viewed as clusters of data, and each hero is placed in the one they are closer the most.

Tier S: D.Va 96%.

Tier 1: Winston 86% - Zenyatta 83% - Tracer 78%.

Tier 2: Lucio 48% - Mercy 41%.

Tier 3: Genji 28% - Widowmaker 27% - Soldier 19%

Tier 4: Ana 13% - Moira 10% - Junkrat 10% - McCree 9% - Renhardt 8% - Roadhog 8% - Pharah 8% - Sombra 7% - Zarya 5%.

Tier 5: Orisa 3% - Hanzo 1% - Reaper 1% - Doomfist 0.8% - Mei 0.6% - Bastion 0.1% - Torbjorn 0.1% - Symmetra 0%.

The dive meta

Jacob "JAKE" Lyon, DPS player for Houston Outlaws, shared his thoughts on the dive meta during a short stream while reviewing OWL matches. The Twitch video is available here - he starts discussing about it at 1:31:00. Below, a summary of his opinions:

D.Va is one the most significant kills you can get in the actual meta.

D.Va doesn’t need nerfs as the real problem is map design. The Overwatch maps are excellent, but at a very high game play level it is complicated to balance characters with exceptional mobility such as D.Va and Winston against others with almost no mobility like Reinhardt or Zarya. If the team is disciplined and focused on mix-maxing the objective, it is easy to simply not engage in a fight.

Usually, getting kills is an important prerequisite to cap the point, but a lot of times it also goes on the other way: you get on the objective to force the other team to contest you, and then you can get kills.

The lingering contest mechanic is limiting tank comps

For example, a triple tank composition with Reinhardt has a fundamental game plan: “get to them, and fight them”. They want to force the opponents to engage.

As the dive team, you have the majority of your players assigned to purely damaging the opponents, while Winston, D.Va, and Tracer are on cart cycling duty. Winston can jump on the cart, drop his bubble, stall it for a time, and then jump out. D.Va and Tracer can do the same.

They stop the objective and save time. You get in a situation in which the cart hasn’t moved at all for over fifteen seconds because the defenders perfectly contested it, and meanwhile Soldier and Zenyatta are safely attacking the tank team from a high-ground position - this is where the tank comp starts to fall apart.

 Tracer from Overwatch animated short “Alive”

Tracer from Overwatch animated short “Alive”

The lingering contest mechanic should be removed, or the duration must be reduced.

If not in Overtime, and the defenders aren’t on the point, it should cap instantly. Instead, now Tracer can contest the objective forever as she needs to touch the cart only for a portion of the time (3 seconds over 5) and meanwhile blink in and out. There is only a very little opportunity to kill her while she is on cart duty.

Note: Initially, JAKE states that the mechanic must be removed from the game, but afterwards he precises that diminishing the duration is enough.

Brigitte can’t heal well if she can’t hit anything. As dive comps keep contesting and cycling, it is very hard to do her job. Brigitte is designed to work well once the dive team commits and fights her, but they won’t do it until the tank team is out of resources. Ultimately, the hero will struggle against smart teams using this tactic.

Sombra works both with dive and tank comps. In particular, hacking health packs is great in a dive team as they can be abused by high mobility heroes: they can fight, step back to heal, and jump back in the fight.

There are no anti-dive heroes. Dive is a fundamental way of playing the game that can not be countered, and dive teams abuse mobility to get something from nothing. For example, the Reinhardt comp needs to get near you, but dive comps will never let it happen as it is way easier to just kite forever and refuse to commit.

Also, mistakes are punished much harder in a tank comp, while in a dive team the remaining characters can just run away.

The triple tank meta

At that time, Reinhardt’s Earthshatter and Roadhog were better. Thanks to his skillset, Roadhog could snipe high-mobility characters and eliminate them from the game - you couldn’t save people from Chain Hook using D.Va’s Defense Matrix.

Due to the adjustments to Defense Matrix, now there is only one possible target for him, which is D.Va. If you don’t get her, she will just keep blocking any damage against her teammates, and you will be worthless.

Note: Defense Matrix doesn't block Chain Hook, but D.Va can deny any follow-up shot against her allies.

Finally, during that meta, D.Va was way stronger: now she deals more damage, but is more vulnerable - all that armor and the 10 seconds Defense Matrix were insanely powerful.

Overall, the changes are good for the game as the tanks were just too strong, but some re-balancing work is still necessary.

 Image from Overwatch animated short “Alive”

Image from Overwatch animated short “Alive”

Some characters are more rewarding than others - The support meta is fine.

Winston and D.Va are the only super OP characters.

If the team attacks the target affected by Orb of Discord, Zenyatta is insane because he can be compared to a Mercy damage-boosting the entire team. Also, killing a Mercy-pocketed Zenyatta is very difficult due to her constant healing.

Tracer is basically unusable until Master because she is a low HP hero who can die very fast, but in the hands of the right player she becomes one of the strongest characters in the game, and a must-pick. You can’t even nerf Tracer easily because she is already super weak at Platinum and below.

Mercy was the only thing more powerful than dive.

Mercy changed the way the game was played. Overall, she was bad for the game and her presence denied many crazy compositions that are now playable.

Learn more: D.Va Guide. An extensive guide with info on ability, mechanics, techniques, counters, and more.


Header image: Blizzard - Statistics: Winston’s Lab

Vincenzo is an esports writer with five years of experience. Former head editor for Natus Vincere, he has produced content for DreamHack, FACEIT, DOTAFire, 2P, and more. Follow him on @SkulzDota.