Overwatch champion guide - Widowmaker (The complete Widowmaker guide)
WIDOWMAKER GUIDE - In depth analysis on how and when to play her (One shot, One kill!)
2. Strengths and Weaknesses
3. Skills and Abilities
4. Auto attacking
5. How to use your abilities + combos
6. How to play Widowmaker strategically (in-depth)
7. How to improve your mechanics
8. Picks and counterpicks
9. How to play against a good Widowmaker
- Role - Defense
- Difficulty - High
- What is she good at – Widowmaker is a squishy sniper champion fit to kill enemies from long range. She excels when positioned properly, outside of the range of most heroes and at places that are hard to reach. This sniper hero can carry almost any game if you hit most of your shots, position her properly and focus the most vulnerable champions. She is better on the Defense, but a good Widowmaker on the Attack is a real terror for the opposite team also. She is one of the most picked heroes at the moment and therefor receives Myboosting’s top place in our Overwatch champion tier list!
- When to pick/not pick - Picking Widowmaker is situational. You need to take into consideration a number of things before choosing to go with that hero. A lot of diving type of champions can make her life really miserably. Also you want to focus playing her on larger maps that provide enough places for her to take full advantage of her biggest strength – her long range. Consider another champion if the enemy composition has tanks that can block your damage, or heroes that can flank her or straight up dive you.
2.Strengths and Weaknesses (in-depth Widowmaker analysis)
- Strengths – Overwatch has quite the diversity when it comes to champion choice. The game simply could not go without a real Sniper hero.
Widowmaker’s biggest strength is her unmatched range. Her shots really hurt and can 2 shot all the heroes below 200 HP, a headshot will do the job in just one perfect bullet. A thing to note is that although she is not the strongest dualist in closer ranges, her normal autoattacks actually give her a solid basis to outplay and kill a lot of the so called dualists. Another massive strength is that she can virtually take position in almost any place on any map. With good strategy she is a force to be reckoned with.
- Weaknesses – Poor aiming make this hero almost useless. If you don’t hit a lot of your shots consider switching to some other champion. As we previously mentioned she is not the best dualist in close range. She is usually one of the top focused heroes to kill by the enemy team so if you are not cautious you might be an easy prey. Flankers can make your life difficult. If you focus too much on what to shoot you might forget to look for the closer threats. You are not a guy that wants to be in the center of things. You are also supposed to avoid capturing objectives too, leave that to your team.
WIDOW'S KISS - Widowmaker's versatile sniper rifle is ideal for scope-aimed shots at distant targets. Should targets close to medium range, the rifle can also be fired in fully-automatic mode.
GRAPPLING HOOK - Widowmaker launches a grappling hook towards the location she’s aiming at – when the hook connects with a scalable surface, she’s quickly drawn towards it, allowing her to expand her view of the battlefield and evade or flank targets.
VENOM MINE - Widowmaker adheres a swiftly-arming venom mine to nearly any surface. When a target wanders within range of the mine’s motion trigger, it explodes, delivering poison gas to any enemies in the vicinity.
INFRA-SIGHT (ultimate) - Widowmaker's recon visor allows her to see the heat signatures of her targets through walls and objects for a moderate amount of time. This enhanced vision is shared with her allies.
4.Auto attacking (sniping)
A proper Aim as a sniper is essential. A very important thing to know is that when you put your scope on there is a 1 second damage charge. After this 1 second you deal max damage. 1 scope shot takes 3 bullets. See the mechanic improvement part for more info on how to shoot better.
Your normal autos (without scope) is a low-mid damage source but if you are against a low HP target it will usually win you the fight, so don’t always try to snipe people, sometimes it’s just better to shoot with the automatic fire.
5.How to use your abilities + combos
First of all find proper spots on each map where you can snipe from. Always think one step ahead and if needed relocate. You Hook allows you to reach roof tops, terraces and other hard to reach places. It is also an incredibly effective tool to avoid a 1 v 1 that you cant win.
Your venom mine should be used more often as a warning tool then as a damage source. You really cant rely that you will kill someone with it, although it happens occasionally. The best use of this skill is to give you alert when a flanker is on your back/side. As an addition as the flanker will want to come and kill you, you will know where he is coming from and he will be a little bit damaged from the mine giving you extra advantage if you decide to go for a 1 v 1 with him.
Your ult is one of the best in the game if not the best. Use it almost everytime on cooldown. It is virtually a wallhack that benefits your whole team. You can see movement, predict attacks and many more. It’s a tool that gives a massive edge when used.
6. How to play Widowmaker strategically (in-depth)
- Payload maps (attack & defense) - Payload maps revolve around movement and ability to fight in a constantly changing environment. Some places are better suited for the attackers, while other are like a well protected fortress. Widowmaker is a champ that can take advantage in these type of maps, but only if you have a good strategical approach. You are obviously not the one that wants to be in the front or anywhere near the main area of fighting. Your job is to take a comfortable position, preferably kill the squishies. However hitting the tanks is also alright if you don’t have a better target to focus.
Attacking on payload maps as a Widow is a good option for a skilled player. If you lack experience the Defense will be better for you. When attacking, choose your spots wisely and always look for the range advantage. If that is impossible (due to terrain or else) stay in the backline of your team and shoot on sight.
As a defender Widowmaker can solo stop massive pushes. She excels when she is safe on one place and a lot of maps are well fit for these situations, especially as a Defense. If you find a perfect spot don’t change it until you feel intimidated. Always think of your surrounding and for the places from which a flanker might appear. Put some Venomous traps on these locations so that you can ensure your safety.
- Capture maps (attack & defense) - Caputure maps are probably the best for Widowmaker. You know where people are headed for in each point of time so you can prepare your plan to stomp the enemies while they prepare their attack or defense. Most maps have a well known places that players take as “best” to locate their damage heroes. Look for them and if you find someone just shoot. Don’t stay with a Scope on all the time. In fact you want to be in normal form much more, so that you can have a good feel of what is going on in the area around you.
- Control maps – most probably the worst ones for Widowmaker since they are always focused at one spot that usually doesn’t have high range visibility. The fighting is almost non-stop. Widow though wants to take things one at a time, therefor requires bigger periods in which she will putout her maximum damage, preferably killing a few heroes. Avoiding all narrow and small paths is something that you really want to do with this hero and Control maps force you to forget about that. In general Widow can still be effective, but it’s much harder and in many cases she is not the best champion to take.
7.How to improve your Widowmaker mechanics
o Basic mechanics you need to know / master
As said before – Accurate aim is what will win your games as a Widowmaker. Now this is something that can not be taught that easy, but this Widowmaker guide will give you some basic lines on how to improve. First of all aiming for the Head is much more damaging, but if you are not a great shooter shooting the body is a better choice. Looking at one point (like a gate the enemies will come through) increases your chance to hit. Adjust your sensitivity so that you feel comfortable with the mouse. Try out a few Bot sessions to find out what your aim is lacking.
Using your Hook is a must. Find the places where you are most safe. If an enemy comes and can kill you the hook is your best escape tool. Watch the cooldown and be prepared with an escape plan in advance.
o Advanced mechanics you need to know / master
When you feel more comfortable with the champion and with the scope aim you really want to start thinking about shooting people in the Head. Doing that requires a lot of practice and a little bit of talent.
Start thinking not only in horizontal directions. The vertical ones are actually a way to outplay an opponent in many many situations. Widowmaker is someone that has an edge over a lot of heroes in that regards. Stay high, fall on the ground, go back up. Very little heroes can track your movement if you do that. In many cases you can actually fully confuse the one that wanted to kill you and lead him into a deadly situation. Win – Win !
o Pro mechanics you need to know / master
Widowmaker is not exactly the most mechanically heavy hero when it comes to usage of her abilities. However other things define her as one of the highest skill cap characters in the game. You can get good at the hero, you can get amazing at it, but there will always be space to improve.
Positioning is a main factor that will increase your winrate. Stay one step ahead of the enemies and secure an escape route in every situation. Knowing how to move and stay untouched is much harder than it sounds. Lot’s of maps (and parts of maps) do not give a perfect surrounding for a Widow, however you want to know how to react instantly when you have a mark on your head. Again thinking vertically is extremely useful to make up a good plan how to operate.
Knowing when to switch from Scope to normal automatic attacks is also essential for your success. In many situations Scope is better, in others the normal attacks. There are these where you have maximum chance for success only if you mix both types of shooting. If you have a small window of safety put the scope out – you hit – you win, you miss – you keep on running and shooting with your SMG. Repeat until you or your opponent dies and know that you cant win them all!
Different maps - different locations you want to focus on. Explore each map and figure out the spots you want to shoot from. Knowing the terrain, where the enemies might be or come from gives a massive advantage for any Widowmaker player. A healing pack nearby your place is not to be underestimated!
8.Picks and counterpicks
Pick Widowmaker when you want to disrupt the enemies lines before the real fighting has even started. She is exceptional on larger maps like Watchpoint Gibraltar, Hanamura (1st stage), Temple of Anubis, Numbani, Hollywood etc.
She is not the best teamfighter so a teamfighting composition counters her partially.
The real counters to Widow is just one – a better Widow.
Besides that strong picks against her are – Winston, Tracer, Genji, D.Va., Reaper.
Example team composition where Widow will fit looks like that, but can be good in a thousand different ways:
Mercy, Zarya, Winston, McCree, Bastion, Widowmaker – you have plenty of things to get the attention of the enemy team, so you might feel safer than most games with that type of composition.
9. Playing against a good Widowmaker
An exceptional sniper can literary solo carry a game. If you are against one you want to think of a way to make him run and rotate non-stop, so that he wont have the chance to freely shoot at your teammates. Picking a Winston, Tracer, Genji is a great medicine for that if you make the enemy’s Widow your primary target. If you are good at shooting yourself taking Widowmaker, Hanzo or McCree can do just fine, but if you feel outskilled better consider a way to block her damage either by providing a shield in a teamfight or simply by diving straight into her constantly. Forcing a sniper to play in tight areas is a huge advantage so consider the different options of the terrain you are playing on.
Widowmaker is an exceptional pick in the hands of a good player. She requires a lot of practice and is not suited for everyone. Aiming is a must know along with positioning and area awareness. However if you figure out how to master her she will definitely return the favor. She is better on some maps than others and against some compositions she really struggles, which in other words will mean that she is an occasional pick. Her high-skill cap makes her a hero that a lot of pro players like.
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