Welcome to the second part of this guide on playing the first commander of the Overwatch team. If you missed the first part of this article, you’re definitely going to want to check out my brief overview of Soldier: 76’s abilities and hero counters before moving forward, at the link below :
Now let’s dive into some specific strategies for using Soldier: 76’s abilities effectively:
Using Soldier: 76’s Abilities Effectively
Heavy Pulse Rifle
Type Rapid Fire Hitscan Damage 5-17 Falloff range 35 to 55 meters Rate of fire 10 rounds per second Ammo 25 Reload time 1.5 seconds Headshot ✓
This basic weapon is the main source of your damage, it’s fast, accurate, and deadly when focused onto delicate heroes.
- Using the Heavy Pulse Rifle effectively is all about maintaining your accuracy while focusing short to medium controlled bursts on the high priority enemy targets. Are large heroes easier to hit? Yes. But are they usually the heroes you should be going after? No.
- I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that headshots are going to do a lot more damage than anywhere else (2x more damage to be exact), which in turn means they build your Ultimate charge much faster.
- It doesn’t hurt to adjust your settings to make tracking your opponents a little easier. Your ingame mouse sensitivity can be lowered, so that spinning your character around as you chase Tracer isn’t reminiscent of the time you got sick on the merry-go-round.
- When it comes to your rifle, when you’re not firing it, or you’ve run out of bullets, you should of course be reloading it. If you’re already reloaded, you should be behind cover scoping the field for your next target to fire upon. Once that target is located, you should firing short controlled bursts at their torso. Rinse and repeat these steps until your Tactical Visor is ready.
His Basic Abilities
Type Linear Splash Projectile Damage 120 Projectile speed 40 meters per second Area of effect 2 meter radius Cooldown 8 seconds Headshot ✕
Helix Rockets make the baddies go boom, so use them often and use them effectively :
- One of the most effective ways to use this ability is as a reaction shot in the heat of battle, similar to the rocket launcher in other first person shooters. You would be surprised how accurate a complete Overwatch newbie can be with this weapon when their back is up against a wall, I mean that both literally and metaphorically.
- Your Helix Rocket does a ton of damage, but the area of effect is relatively small compared to other heroes’ AOE abilities. Fire at enemies that are bunched together, but don’t try to be too greedy: prioritize healers and other low HP heroes that are alone, rather than a group of tanks.
- Don’t aim for the head, most enemies die with a good hit on the torso followed by a halfway decent rifle burst. That’s not an easy target to hit either if the enemy is in motion, aiming for the ground near your enemy is the best way to guarantee damage.
Movement speed 8.33 meters per second Duration Until cancelled
This ability is for far more than running back to the action faster post death.
- The most common way to use sprint is as a speed boost when you’re running to cover, which you should always be doing as Soldier: 76 if you’re caught out in the open. Running always helps with evading enemy fire, but you should also be jumping around as this makes it much harder for your enemy to predict your next location.
- Soldier: 76 is a lot harder to hit while he is sprinting, but only if he does so in a way that is not predictable. If you always run in a straight line at a constant speed, your enemy will eventually catch on to this and start accurately anticipating your location regardless of how fast you’re running.
- Use sprint while running in unpredictable zig zag and circular patterns, and use it in a “stop and start” kind of way while firing constantly (firing deactivates sprint, but there is no cooldown on this ability, so press it again immediately after firing while remaining in motion), so that your enemy cannot easily adapt to your increased speed.
Healing 40 health per second Area of effect 5 meter radius Duration 5 seconds Cooldown 15 seconds
In the first part of this article I mentioned that Soldier: 76 can heal himself to full health in seconds standing in the Biotic Field. A Soldier: 76 with 1 hp can be fully healed in 5 seconds, we can be sure of this because he has 200 health, and the field heals for 40 health per second.
Tips for healing with the Biotic Field effectively :
- In the heat of battle, it can be easy to forget that Soldier: 76 is capable of healing heroes other than himself, but neglecting to spam Biotic Field is the difference between winning and losing. Remember to place the healing field when it is off cooldown if damage is happening near you, or about to happen near you, even if you are at full health.
- When they’re at full health, the marker over your allies’ heads will be light blue. If the marker is yellow, they’re not at full health but as Soldier: 76, you cannot see exactly how much damage they’ve taken. Tend to your injured teammates as a full healer might, every point of health healed adds to the charge you need to activate your ultimate ability.
- Place the field as before you’re at low health, and be aggressive as you stand within it’s area of effect, but be sure to keep an eye on your HP bar at the bottom of the screen. Don’t let the area of effect make you into an easy target, by staying within it’s perimeter so that an enemy can easily kill you by aiming for the big yellow spot on their screen.
- Pick good spots to place your field, like in Winston’s barrier. You can even place the Biotic Field on a moving payload, your team will appreciate the convenient heals as you cruise towards the objective.
His Ultimate Ability
Duration 6 seconds Charge required 1650 points
Even though you have perfect accuracy for a full 6 seconds, its important to remember that activating Tactical Visor does not give you immunity. In fact, when the enemy team hears the voice line “I’ve got you in my sights.”, any hero that is out of your vision will try to kill you immediately. As you can imagine, killing the hero with a built-in aimbot as his ultimate is going to be a high priority for any team that’s halfway decent.
That being said, Soldier: 76 should take care when it comes to the timing of his ultimate.
Ideal times to activate Tactical Visor may include…
- …when the enemy team is distracted, and you are in an ideal flank position. Even more so than usual, you will want to have nearby places to jump behind for split second cover. You should be in constant motion for the entirety of your ultimate, and really, the entirety of the game.
- Try not activate this ultimate nearby, even if you are directly behind the enemies’ backs. Tactical Visor is highly accurate, but the damage output itself is not major compared to other ultimates, so you will only waste it by dying instantly.
- If you must activate the ultimate in close range, keep as much distance as you can at first, slightly advancing towards enemies that are squishy in a menacing way, then quickly backing away as heavier opponents take notice of you.
- Depending on the current state of the objective, you may have to get in very close to avoid losing the game. Always try to zig zag as unpredictably as possible. Using the multiple cars and other large objects located directly on the objective for cover can help you save the game if your tank is dead or otherwise unavailable.
Soldier: 76 Tips To Walk Away With
- HEAL. The extra healing your allies gain from standing within your Biotic Field will make all the difference in team fights. I cannot stress enough how important it is to train yourself to spam it during all team engagements.
- Know which heroes Soldier: 76 can take on in a one versus one scenario, and which ones are best to sprint away from. It is usually always better to have distance over your enemy however, unless you are chasing to finish off a low HP target.
- If you’re new to Overwatch, you may find it tempting to lean on Soldier: 76 as your main choice for every situation, but you don’t want to become so comfortable playing this hero that you neglect to learn the others. The downside to being such a well rounded offense hero is that Soldier: 76 does not stand out among his peers in any particular role, and in a game like Overwatch, crazy unconventional abilities and heroes is a major part of the fun.
As always, please feel free to comment below with questions and feedback!
Written by Puff, aka Jean
Note : Official detailed stat information quoted from Gamepedia.