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'Overwatch' hero spotlight: How to suck less with Tracer

July 23,2016 10:17

Different guns, different abilities, different movement speeds, different quirks. Learning to excel with one hero doesn't mean you've mastered Overwatch. SEE ALSO: 4 'Overwatch' hero strategies for beginners to master. Playing a hero the "right" way ...


Image: Blizzard EntertainmentBy Adam Rosenberg2016-07-22 18:56:18 UTC
 
Each Overwatch hero is a special snowflake.
Different guns, different abilities, different movement speeds, different quirks. Learning to excel with one hero doesn't mean you've mastered Overwatch.
Playing a hero the "right" way only gets you so far, of course. Positioning, team formation (on both sides) and overall skill level are still important; you can play a hero perfectly and still lose. But you probably won't win until you learn to play whoever you're using right.
We've got you covered. Read on for tips, strategies and ideal maps/modes to help you suck less at using Overwatch's fast-moving Brit flanker, Tracer.
Abililty breakdown

Primary weapon: Pulse Pistols. Dual-wielded, fast-firing auto-pistols that shoot simultaneously whenever the trigger is pulled. Connect with a full clip for the higher end of moderate damage.
Blink: Tracer teleports a short distance horizontally in whichever direction she's moving in when the ability is triggered. Up to three Blink charges can be stored at a time, with a 3-second cooldown on each charge.
Recall: Tracer travels three seconds backwards in time, reverting her health, ammo and location to whatever and wherever it was before. 12-second cooldown.
Ultimate ability: Pulse Bomb. A lobbed bomb that sticks to the first surface or enemy hero it comes into contact with. Detonates after a brief delay, dealing 400 damage to anyone near the blast.
How to Tracer
Tracer is a meat-and-potatoes flanker who is living her best life when she's buzzing around the enemy flanks, distracting enemies away from her team's forward advance.
Tracer can deal significant damage at close range, but her pistol fire spreads out quickly and lacks punch at greater distances. She also burns through a full clip in about one second.

Image: Blizzard EntertainmentThat's where Blink comes in. If you Blink while a reload animation is playing out, Tracer will have completed the action by the time you regain control. Even if you have to Blink before your clip is empty, get in the habit of reloading then Blinking whenever you can.
Blink is also handy for closing the distance, but using it to escape should always be your plan "B." If you're playing Tracer right, you're using Blink to get close and deal damage then switching to Recall for your escape.
Hit-and-run tactics work best with Tracer due to her low health pool. You might take damage as you rush in to fire, but Recall allows you to erase it without hunting down a health pack or healer. 
Just remember: Tracer is most effective at splitting the enemy team's attention. Blink past their front lines and attack their flanks or occupy the capture point. You can be tremendously effective as Tracer just by moving around and getting the enemy team to shoot at you.
Tracer can be definitely deadly in the right hands, but accuracy and a good sense of timing are required. You have to know how close you need to be to dish out meaningful damage, and you have to keep your crosshairs locked on target while staying mobile and adjusting to Blink's sudden perspective shifts.
Pulse Bomb fits easily into this strategy. Blink right up into an enemy's face and release the Ultimate, then Blink or Recall away. This works best with tanks due to their large size, but a competent Tracer can plant a Pulse Bomb on anyone.
Best maps/modes: Tracer is a powerful ally on Control maps and any defend scenario thanks to her ability to distract and draw attention forces from the capture point. She's also very good at breaking through heavily defended bottlenecks and creating opportunities for more friendlies to slip through.

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