Overwatch 2 may be a new game, but Pharah is still as annoying as ever. So, what are some of the best heroes to counter and ground Overwatch’s greatest aerial threat?
One thing we have to keep in mind is that Pharah is a vertical threat. That already makes it difficult for projectile heroes like Hanzo or Genji to play well into her. However, the cast is chock-full of hitscan DPS that can clip Pharah’s wings. Whereas heroes like Cassidy, Ashe, or even Soldier: 76 (yes, even post nerf) are excellent at dealing with Pharah. This is due to the immediate and precise nature of their weapons rather than having to arc and wait for a projectile to land. Really any hero that is going to immediately threaten the Pharah to keep her in check is going to shine.That said there is another aspect to Pharah that we simply cannot ignore; her typical pairing with Mercy.This gives us two targets to focus on, which opens up avenues for heroes like Widowmaker and Sojourn to really shine as counters to Pharah. Having two heads to track to flick to that move in predictable ways makes these long-range hitscan heroes stand out as premier counters to Pharah. Remember, dealing with Pharah is a two-pronged threat. Take her pocket Mercy down and Pharah is sure to follow.
In the tank role, things become slightly more tricky. In the past, we’d just have our off-tanks handle Pharah in the air where we might control the ground, but with Overwatch 2’s move to 5v5, this makes it difficult to do both at the same time. To counter Pharah in Overwatch 2 we’re looking at really staying away from slow and immobile heroes. This means if there is an oppressive Pharah in your next Overwatch 2 quick play lobby, Reinhardt and Orisa are probably doing you and your team more harm than good. Sigma also shines here for the same reasons we listed earlier. A clutch stun onto the Mercy can leave her wide open for your DPS to remove off the board. You can also save your rock for her Resurrection as well for an easy stun.Instead, see if your team would work around more traditional picks to counter Pharah. Things like D.Va and Sigma work wonders. Both are able to pressure her if she positions close for a Rocket Barrage and facilitate their teammates in their own ways. The former can be a little more aggressive on vertical maps whereas the latter controls space quite well on flatter and more narrow maps. If your team composition allows for it, picks like Wrecking Ball and Winstoncan open up a fast-moving ground war and ignore the Pharah, however, this option is a little riskier. Approach this counter to Pharah like the intermediate difficult on an RPG. Attempt at your own risk.
Ana is your primary source for countering Pharah from the support position. Between offensive shots and Sleep Dart, she’s is going to make Pharah’s life a living nightmare if played correctly. A word of advice, Ana is about balance. If your team is healthy, tagging a Pharah with your primary fire can make or break a team fight. A few tiers below Ana you have heroes like Baptiste. Immortality Field can assist your team through a well-placed Rocket Barrage while also still keeping some offensive pressure on Pharah. However, with Concussive Blast recent being buffed, this only reaffirms how strong Ana is in countering Pharah. Outside of that, Zenyatta is a sitting duck for a well-placed rocket, however, Discord Orb is never a bad choice, just know if Pharah finds you, you’re going to take some bruises for it.Images via Blizzard Entertainment
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