There’s five supports now!
We all knew a support was coming to Overwatch, but I didn’t expect Pharah’s mom, and I especially didn’t expect her to be in playable state on the PTR today.
Yes, if you’re so inclined, you can boot up your Battle.net client right now and try Ana out — I suggest you do so, because she’s a blast to play.
Did I mention there are now five supports?
Ana couldn’t have come at a better time. With the meta heavily favoring Lucio and Mercy (more-so the former when it comes to winrates) as dedicated healers, there was a diversity problem with the support class overall. But the times they are a changin’, and I’m happy to report that in her current state (which could change), she’s damn fun to play and has a high skill ceiling.
The core of Ana’s kit is partially why I’m enjoying her so much. Her bolt-action sniper shots, which can damage or heal with the same bullets, feel good and rewarding. It’s weird not having a machine-gun alternative fire, and it’s also strange not having to charge up for the highest damage potential (like Widowmaker). Her shots are also DOTs (damage over time), which takes some getting used to when tagging enemies; sometimes you can set it and forget it, so to speak, hitting multiple foes who have low health and moving on to the next target. Both the DOT and the HOT (heal over time) take a little over a second to provide their full effect. She’s definitely suited for quick, reactive players.
Her other abilities are just as rewarding. I love the sidearm tranquilizer, and it really helps her not get overwhelmed when confronted in a one-on-one environment. I was worried at first that her Biotic Grenade would encroach on Soldier’s territory with his healing dome, but it’s very different. It is in fact a traditional grenade that must be carefully aimed, it just happens to prevent enemy healing while healing allies in turn. Oh, and it can self-heal. Awesome. As if she couldn’t feel any better, her ult (which increases a friendly player’s speed, damage, and adds damage reduction) is designed in a way that it cannot miss, and locks on like Symmetra’s shields.
But again, she’s going to take skill and you need to consistently land your shots. She has no movement or escape abilities of any kind (outside of a well-timed sleep dart, which can’t stop an onslaught from an opposing team), so you’ll need to choose the location of your perch well. And since she can’t hook her way up to hideaways like Widowmaker or run up walls like Hanzo, she’s also limited in where she can go. But between Ana’s eventual addition to the live game and Zenyatta/Mercy’s upcoming buff, the future of supports is looking real bright.
If you’re so inclined, you can check out her legendary skins in the galley below.