Most Overwatch players like nothing more than dealing damage to opponents. However, despite the fact this is an FPS, healing abilities were always the focal point of the game. In fact, if you look back to Overwatch’s eSports history, you’ll realize that most teams won professional tournaments because of their defense, not offense.
The healing dynamic in this game always felt funky to me. Relying on sustain and barriers was a thing that separated this shooter from anything else on the market. So much so that it caused numerous controversies over time.
There’s a good reason why most modern-day team compositions feature two supports. This isn’t by chance because in Overwatch, buffs and heals take priority to damage-dealing abilities. Furthermore, it’s extremely hard to win specific maps and modes without being able to push as a team. The developers often force you to create an amalgam of meat and roll it into town Akira-style.
In this guide, I’ll analyze all the healers in the game. I focused on the impact of their abilities and how viable they are in the current meta.
What Were the Selection Criteria?
Luckily, there aren’t many healers in Overwatch as there are in some other MOBAs, so I didn’t have much trouble making this list. Although each one of these characters was highly potent at one point or another, I gave priority to those that worked well at this moment in time.
Keep in mind that not all of these are supports. I also added Soldier: 76, who is somewhat of a hybrid character. Furthermore, this isn’t a list of the most powerful healing abilities. My selection criteria were much more complex than that. Here are the things I considered when making my selection:
- Hero’s win rate in the current meta.
- The number and power of healing abilities.
- Hero’s viability in different situations, maps, and modes.
- The ability to turn battles based on healing along.
For a hero to be classified as a “healer,” he or she needs to be able to heal others. In other words, the opposing team has to perceive you as the most annoying thing since the fidget spinner.
Best Healers in Overwatch
As mentioned, I’ve selected these heroes based on the meta trends. This is why I have Lucio and Brigitte as the top two entries. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean they provide the biggest healing output. It’s just that they’re more suitable for the current playstyle of Overwatch 2.
Here is how I classified all the healers in the game, from worst to best.
9. Soldier: 76 (48.29% win rate, 3.52% pick rate)
- Biotic Field
Soldier: 76 is one of the more versatile characters in the game. He’s fantastic for beginners, given that his Heavy Pulse Rifle is precise and has little recoil. He is a perfect choice for guys who consider Animal Crossing the pinnacle of their gaming career.
Although I decided to classify him as a healer, he is the weakest character in this group. My main issue with Soldier: 76 is that his defensive ability is simply not strong enough. The sustain is not bad, and it works in an area. However, that’s about that. The character also has a movement ability that helps him escape from the fray. Just in case his kit wasn’t beginner-friendly enough.
You won’t bring a character back from the brink of death with Biotic Field. He also doesn’t have any buff or protection that would help buy time while the heal works. Still, the ability works well in situations where a team is grouped together in a static position. For example, it can be nice when playing as a defender on specific maps.
8. Baptiste (47.71% win rate, 2.36% pick rate)
- Biotic Launcher Alt Fire
- Regenerative Burst
- Immortality Field
Baptiste was lost in the shuffle in Overwatch 2. He has the lowest win rate out of all the healers and is one of the worst characters in the game. Although I don’t think his healing abilities are bad (he has a lot of them), they simply don’t fit the current meta.
The problem with this character is that his skills are much more suitable for static play. In that regard, he is somewhat similar to Soldier: 76.
Biotic Launcher can provide a nice burst of healing. Unfortunately, it also requires aiming, which is why Baptiste is incredibly ineffective at lower tiers of the competition. The ability gets better with Amplification Matrix, but once again, you need a certain level of proficiency to properly execute the combo.
Regardless of his deficiencies, I like how Immortality Field and Regenerative Burst go together. These two abilities have incredible synergy and can literally win you the round, even though they’re not ultimates.
7. Mercy (49.47% win rate, 5.96% pick rate)
- Caduceus Staff
Mercy is a legendary champion that has made the game what it is today. She was the bane of our existence for a long time, forcing players to switch to Dark Souls as a less frustrating option.
In the second iteration, she has somewhat lost her viability, although she can still be a solid pick. Most notably, Mercy is a fantastic choice if you need someone who will follow DPS and provide a boost to their defense or offense.
Her Caduceus Staff sends a healing stream to an ally. Although the skill isn’t ideal for saving allies at the brink of death, it can be an excellent choice against enemies with consistent damage. The great thing about Mercy is that she has some leeway for mistakes. Even if one of your allies dies, you can always bring them to life with Resurrect.
Unfortunately, the champion has a few noticeable flaws. As already mentioned, she doesn’t provide a burst of healing like some other characters. Furthermore, for the hero to be effective, you need to follow in character’s steps, which would make you vulnerable. The second issue is that she doesn’t have AOE healing without activating Valkyrie.
6. Moira (50.25% win rate, 4.69% pick rate)
- Biotic Grasp
- Biotic Orb
Although Moira has powerful healing spells, it’s hard to maximize their efficiency. The character’s main issue is that you need to be patient with how you’re using your abilities. Most of them get depleted quickly, and if you focus too much on healing, you’ll also lose offensive potential.
Moira’s spells work really well within area-of-effect. Biotic Orb is a quick-casting ability that provides lots of sustain over time. If you also combine it with Biotic Grasp, you can quickly restore an ally who is close to dying. Both these spells have an offensive and defensive variant, which you can swap depending on an in-game situation.
Coalescence is extremely strong, allowing you to combine healing effects and damage. However, given that it works in a line, you might not get the most out of it. Proper positioning is even more critical for Moira than some other supports, just because of how her spells work.
Anyway, while her healing abilities are strong, not all players know how to use them properly.
5. Zenyatta (52.11% win rate, 3.55% pick rate)
- Orb of Harmony
Although Zenyatta has been somewhat mediocre in the second iteration of the game, I decided to put him as 5th ranked healer. The only reason why I even placed him this high is that his ultimate is simply too good. The hero’s main issue doesn’t have to do with health sustain but the fact he can be killed by a leaf blower. Good thing he doesn’t have scissors as the main weapon.
Orb of Harmony is a solid healing spell, but not the best ability from this category. What’s worse, you need to maintain a line of sight with a target to keep the effect. This can be somewhat hard to accomplish in the current meta, which is quick and chaotic.
You might still try to do so, but you would be leaving yourself exposed. The last thing you need is for your Zenyatta to die by stumbling on uneven texture.
Still, Orb of Harmony can come in handy if you cast it ahead of time. It can provide excellent sustain to initiators and tanks and is most effective as a preventative measure. As for Transcendence, it’s probably the most potent defensive spell in the game. The only issue is that it’s not always available, which significantly diminishes the character’s value as a healer.
4. Ana (48.57% win rate, 8.87% pick rate)
- Biotic Rifle
- Biotic Grenade
- Nano Boost
Despite having a subpar performance as of late, Ana is still considered one of the top picks. In fact, she is the most popular support at this point in time. The reason why many players and teams select her is that she is one of the rare characters that still have solid crowd control ability. She will send you to “La la land” without having to watch the actual movie.
Although conceptually a sniper, some of her abilities work better at medium range. In particular, you need to be close to your allies to land Biotic Grenade. This is an excellent ability that provides lots of value over time.
Generally speaking, the hero’s healing effect stack well with each other. Biotic Grenade increase overall healing received, while Nano Boost reduces the damage taken by 50%. Combining these two on a single character can make them virtually unstoppable for a period of time.
The biggest problem with Ana is that she’s not well suited for the current meta. The game is too fast, making it hard to hit and heal allies on the move. If you’re 36 years old such as myself, just go and pick Reaper. At least you’ll hit something with the shotgun.
3. Kiriko (50.30% win rate, 7.70% pick rate)
- Healing Ofuda
- Protection Suzu
If I had written this article a month ago, I would’ve placed Kiriko in the first place. Unfortunately, since then, the hero has received a few nerfs that significantly reduced her impact. Regardless she is still the second-most popular support in the game and a relatively easy character to learn. Aside from her fox ultimate; I just can’t make the damn thing run in a straight line.
Generally speaking, Kiriko isn’t the most potent healer, although she provides nice offensive and defensive buffs. Most notably, she has Protection Suzu that makes allies invulnerable and removes debuffs, on top of smaller heal. It is a spell that has almost single-handedly changed the meta.
Her Healing Ofuda is a solid spell if you’re looking to quickly restore a target. Unfortunately, it doesn’t provide overhealth or any defensive buffs. As a healer, Kiriko is also suffering from the fact she doesn’t have a strong AOE heal.
Although the combination of Protection Suzu and Healing Ofuda can help save allies low on health, it can’t compare to similar near-death protective abilities.
2. Lucio (52.59% win rate, 3.99% pick rate)
- Amp It Up·
For all intents and purposes, Lucio is the best support in the game and, according to many, the easiest character to master.
You can win many games with him while simultaneously writing a Ph.D. dissertation with your off-hand. However, I can’t say that he’s the best healer. Whatever the case may be, I had to place it at the top of this list as one of the most successful characters in the current meta.
The reason why Lucio is so strong is that it provides a combination of movement speed and healing. This makes him an ideal choice in Overwatch 2. He can help allies storm objectives and finish the round rather easily.
Crossfade’s healing variant isn’t particularly strong. It’s an ability that works much better when you’re static and trying to slowly restore health. However, it becomes much more potent when you turn on Amp It Up. While in effect, you can restore up to 180 health over 3 seconds.
Regardless, Lucio’s healing abilities are not particularly strong. The thing I really like about him is Sound Barrier, an incredibly powerful support ultimate that gives you 750 overhealth.
1. Brigitte (54.74% win rate, 1.48% pick rate)
- Repair Pack·
There are several reasons why Brigitte is such a strong pick in the current meta. She shares many similarities with Lucio, providing high mobility and sustain to allies. However, unlike Lucio, she has more health and shines in melee range. The best way to describe her is as a “Wham, bam, thank you, ma’am!” type of character.
Brigitte has a passive ability called Inspire, which is activated whenever she uses Whip Shot, Rocket Flail, and Shield Bash. As long as you’re playing aggressively, the ability constantly refreshes itself. More importantly, it also works in AOE, providing benefits to everyone in the vicinity. It makes it somewhat similar to Lucio’s Crossfade.
Repair Pack is a direct heal that comes in 3 charges. Although not the most powerful ability, it stacks well with Inspire and Rally.
You can also increase its duration by throwing several Repair Packs on the same target. Lastly, you also have Rally and barrier abilities that increase your defense and provide overheal. Just the thing your enemies need with their morning coffee.
Question: Who are the main healers in Overwatch?
Answer: In Overwatch, there’s a clear distinction between main healers and supports. Although both perform similar roles, main healers provide much more sustain. On the other hand, supports focus more on buffs.
In terms of total healing per second, the best characters are Ana, Baptiste, Mercy, and Moira. Someone like Lucio and Brigitte are worse in terms of restoring health, although they still provide lots of defense to allies.
Question: What is the best healer duo in Overwatch?
Answer: According to the current meta, the best healing duos usually include Brigitte and Lucio. These two are somewhat interchangeable as they provide movement boost, overheal, and regeneration over time.
If you’re looking for a duo that can complement one another well, you should consider Moira and Brigitte. They can create an enormous burst of healing on top of all the defensive buffs and movement speed they give to teammates.
Question: Is healing harder than DPS?
Answer: Professional Overwatch players consider healers a harder role than DPS. Although damage dealers are crucial for your team, as they help remove priority targets, their mistakes are much less noticeable. On the other hand, if a healer misses his timings, this will lead to an ally’s death, which can doom the whole team.
Best Healer in Overwatch: Conclusion
Performing a healer role in Overwatch can be a hard task. You need to have quick reflexes and play reactionary. Even the smallest mistakes can cost your team a round. So, while you might not need the same mechanical skills as DPS (in particular, aiming), it’s far from a simple job. Like in any other MOBA, you’ll get an earful from your comrades for any mistakes without any accolades for the good plays.
The healers in this game have unique and interesting kits, and are more annoying than the YouTube comment section. Some of them are great at providing bursts of healing, while others combine heals with other defensive abilities. A few of them are considered hybrids and have incredible offensive spells. I’ll go as far as to say that healers in Overwatch and perhaps the most annoying healers in any team game.
Often, your success with a specific character depends on the way you use it. Certain healers can fulfill several roles besides simple support. They can also vary in terms of difficulty. Mastering Baptiste and Ana is much harder than mastering Mercy. Whatever the case may be, I suggest that you try different characters and see which one suits you the best.
Even if a hero is not currently in the meta, you might have a nice time playing it. Just imagine how many enemies you will frustrate by continuously bringing teammates back from the brink of death.