The most important issue for any Overwatch player who suddenly finds themselves hitting a brick wall in match after match, will be to find out which Heroes are best at countering the other Heroes in the wider pool. The game is designed from the ground up to support this philosophy, after all, with individual characters representing solutions to the particular problem posed by the others.
When you have this kind of knowledge to hand, it can make it much easier to deal with a specific threat that's stopping your team from making progress. If you can make the right switch and deal with the threat, after all, you will make a massive difference to your team's fortunes. This is particularly important in the random queue, where you'll often see people repeating the same mistake in battle, and falling to the same defensive setup.
To help you out, we've pulled data together from a number of different sources in order to determine our breakdown of who counters who in Overwatch. For a start, there's the official information released by Blizzard, such as the Hero cards which outline how each character, broadly speaking, is designed on paper to nullify a specific counter-threat. Then there's our own experience from the live game since launch along with the aggregated opinions of some of the world's best players.
The end result should be a pretty solid, at-a-glance, understanding of which characters you might like to consider swapping into if you're struggling to make meaningful progress on any given objective. As the metagame evolves over time, and new character combos and strategies emerge, these rankings are going to change a little - it's never going to be as tic-tac-toe as the table below might suggest, and that's what will keep Overwatch exciting in the long-term.
We'll be updating this list regularly, so keep us bookmarked and make sure you check out the individual Hero guides we've linked to as well. Not only do they contain a huge amount of insight into how to play each character to an extremely high standard, they also go into a little more detail about just why these match-ups and counters are so effective. A little knowledge goes a long way in Overwatch...
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Overwatch Hero counters - July 2016
Here's a breakdown of every single Hero in Overwatch, along with their details of who they are both strong and weak against. We're focusing on the top three in both categories here, but there are obviously shades of grey to be considered among the entire Hero roster.
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|Hero||Strong against||Weak against||Guide|
|Ana counters||Lucio||Genji||Ana guide|
|Bastion counters||Mercy||Genji||Bastion guide|
|D.Va counters||Pharah||Mei||D.Va guide|
|Genji counters||Bastion||Mei||Genji guide|
|Hanzo counters||Bastion||D.Va||Hanzo guide|
|Junkrat counters||Bastion||McCree||Junkrat guide|
|Lucio counters||D.Va||Mei||Lucio guide|
|McCree counters||Reaper||Genji||McCree guide|
|Mei counters||Genji||Junkrat||Mei guide|
|Mercy counters||-||McCree||Mercy guide|
|Pharah counters||Bastion||McCree||Pharah guide|
|Reaper counters||Bastion||Junkrat||Reaper guide|
|Reinhardt counters||Soldier: 76||Reaper||Reinhardt guide|
|Roadhog counters||Pharah||D.Va||Roadhog guide|
|Soldier: 76 counters||Mercy||Genji||Soldier: 76 guide|
|Symmetra counters||Bastion||Junkrat||Symmetra guide|
|Torbjorn counters||Genji||Junkrat||Torbjorn guide|
|Tracer counters||Bastion||McCree||Tracer guide|
|Widowmaker counters||Bastion||D.Va||Widowmaker guide|
|Winston counters||Genji||McCree||Winston guide|
|Zarya counters||D.Va||Pharah||Zarya guide|
|Zenyatta counters||D.Va||Hanzo||Zenyatta guide|