Overwatch has seven support heroes divided into main and flex supports. As the name implies, main healers have kits suitable for putting out large amounts of healing and are dedicated to that task. Flex supports also have healing abilities, but generally rely on more mechanically challenging tasks and crowd-control abilities to assist their teams.
There are no useless or bad healers in Overwatch. Every healer in the game has seen significant success in the Overwatch League, so you can realistically make any support work if the situation is right for them. That being said, there are healers with greater potential and more powerful abilities than others, whether it be because they can put out incredible healing or because they offer essential utility to the team.
Here’s how all the supports in Overwatch stack up.
This time around, only two of Overwatch‘s seven healers have made it into our coveted S tier: Ana and Lucio. Both of these heroes took the crown because they are the best of the best in terms of healing potential, utility, and overall benefit to their team.
Ana is hands-down the best healer for those in the upper tiers of play and those who have extensive aim experience within Overwatch or other first-person shooters. Her skillshot-based healing rifle is generous but not overly so with aim, and her Sleep Dart is a great tool for shutting down enemy ultimates. She’s not as welcoming to newcomers, since she’s entirely aim-based: if you can’t hit your shots, you won’t be healing anyone. She also has few ways to get away from flankers or divers, but good Ana players know how to position to prevent that from happening.
Thanks to her high healing output, the utility of Sleep Dart, and the assistance to other healers with Biotic Grenade, Ana is the perfect mix of utility support and main healer. She takes some time and effort to learn, but once you do, she’s nigh-untouchable by all but the best flankers.
On the flip side of things, Lúcio is the best healer for those in lower tiers or who are just starting to learn about Overwatch‘s supports. Instead of healing on a skillshot basis or aiming at a particular teammate, which is how most of the game’s supports heal, Lúcio does constant area-of-effect healing in a medium-sized area around him. He can also increase allies’ movement speed in the same way, making him great for getting a team back to the payload or objective after a wipe on defense.
In lower skill tiers, aim knowledge tends to be lower. Lúcio is already hard to hit thanks to his wall skate and higher-than-average movement speed; when facing enemies who can’t aim, he becomes even better. For enterprising players, his Soundwave “boop” has a higher skill ceiling and can be used to achieve difficult environmental kills.
The fact that Lúcio’s healing is very much “set it and forget it” in nature and that most of the time you’ll simply be keeping Amp It Up on cooldown makes him both easy to play and powerful. Nothing beats being able to heal all your teammates at once without actually having to aim!
In most situations, Mercy is Overwatch‘s highest-output healer. What she doesn’t have in utility, she makes up for in sheer output. Her powerful sustain healing can keep your teammates alive in a variety of tricky situations. She’s very easy to play and can be hard to play against, making her a great character to practice healing with.
If she’s that great, you might ask, why isn’t she in our S Tier? The main issue with Mercy is that her effectiveness drops off significantly once you reach higher tier levels. If you’re in Bronze, Silver, or even Gold, you can heal away in the backline and few people will so much as look at you unless you overstep your bounds or fly into a bad situation. In higher tiers of play, good DPSes and tanks know how to target Mercy and other backline healers, making it much more difficult to do any effective healing with her. She does have a good escape mechanic, but it’s not as powerful as Ana’s or Lúcio’s.
Even so, her healing amount is simply unmatched. If the opposing team is putting out a lot of damage and your team needs a lot of healing, Mercy is often the way to go. Pairing her with a utility or flex support can bring a lot of benefits to your team without sacrificing total healing output. If only she was that effective in every rank…
Moira is a bit of a strange duck among Overwatch‘s healers. She’s a hybrid DPS and support, meaning she can dish out a fair amount of damage as well as perform essential healing functions for her team. She has a lot of damage potential, but if she’s dealing damage, she’s not healing, and therein lies her problem.
Moira has a small area-of-effect cone heal for her primary fire as well as a healing biotic orb. Both of these abilities can also deal damage. Her secondary fire is her biotic grasp, which deals damage to restore her own healing power and heals her in the process, and her biotic orb has a damage form.
Moira is great for taking out enemies at long-range or tearing through a backline, but when she’s doing that, the team effectively has only one healer. It’s easy to swap between the two modes since there’s really no cooldown for her primary fire, but the positioning for damage and healing is completely different, since Moira needs to be within close proximity of her target to do damage.
Moira is a great all-around healer, but her healing output isn’t high enough to sustain a full team, particularly if the team’s other support is also a flex healer. She works best with a team that has a lot of self-heal or another main healer. This lack of flexibility is what puts her in our A tier.
Baptiste’s biggest draw isn’t his healing, which comes in the form of two area-of-effect abilities that heal all allies nearby. Instead, his other abilities, which bring a large amount of survivability and utility to his team, are the main reasons to pick him.
This healer’s power lies in Immortality Field and Amplification Matrix, his two strongest abilities. Immortality Field has a high cooldown, but for good reason: a well-placed field can keep his entire team alive in a tough fight. When placed correctly, Amplification Matrix can also turn the tide in an offensive assault.
What keeps him out of our highest tier is the niche use of both of these abilities. Amplification Matrix is really only effective with ground-based heroes, so flyers like Pharah and Echo and snipers like Widowmaker and Ashe probably won’t get much use out of it. It can also be difficult to place and is better on narrow maps like King’s Row rather than more open maps. Immortality Field is strong, particularly in lower ranks of play, but higher ranks will know how to target it quickly and burst it down to nullify its effects. In these cases, the utility granted to Baptiste’s team is little to none.
Baptiste is strong, but he’s just a little too niche to be useful in every situation. He definitely has the potential to be a game-changer, but he’s not consistently strong or versatile enough to warrant a consistent spot on every team.
Poor Zenyatta. He’s probably the most difficult healer to play on this list, which puts him in a bad position to begin with. His healing output is very low, which balances his high damage potential; he, like Moira, is a DPS-healer hybrid. Moira has the benefit of an auto-locking beam for her primary fire and more ways to inflict damage, like with her biotic orb. Zenyatta doesn’t have any of these.
Zenyatta moves slowly, leaving him vulnerable to long-range fire, and has no ability to run away from flankers or divers. His primary fire, while it deals a lot of damage, is incredibly difficult to aim and requires a lot of precision and enemy movement prediction on the part of the player. He does have some utility in his Orb of Discord, but it requires callouts from Zenyatta to be used to its full effectiveness. His healing is slow, single-target only, and can be hard to cast correctly.
That doesn’t make Zenyatta a bad hero; it just makes him inaccessible to a large part of Overwatch‘s player base. In the right hands, Zenyatta can be a terror in the backline, clicking on heads at long range while providing some healing assistance, preferably to a main healer like Ana or Mercy. But his barriers to entry are just too high for the average player, making him very hard to play effectively, particularly in lower ranks.
If we’d created this tier list a year or two ago, Brigitte probably would have been S tier. This hybrid tank and support hero was built for one thing: stopping the dive meta, which at the time dominated the game and its professional scene. Heroes like Genji, Tracer, and Winston, who could at one point run the game with little interference from anyone else, were now victims of Brigitte’s excellent stun and long-range mace primary fire.
Those days are behind us at this point, though. Dive isn’t nearly as popular as it used to be, so Brigitte’s effectiveness has fallen off accordingly. She has some utility in the stun and the ability to provide armor to her teammates, but it’s not enough to make much of a difference, particularly against burst-fire heroes. Her healing output is pretty low, and her defensive shield only covers her, preventing her from protecting her team from flankers and divers by any means other than her stun.
A tank-support hybrid is an interesting combination, but Brigitte’s very niche uses put her squarely in our B tier. In very specific cases against very specific team compositions, she could be useful, but those situations are few and far between enough that she’s not strong enough for your average team in any rank. Even with the current shield meta, the solo nature of her shield doesn’t add much to her ability to help her teammates, which is what being a healer is all about.