Overwatch Counter Moves – Cancelling Pharah’s Ultimate
She hits hard and she hits often, Pharah can be a pain in the arse. Her ability to inflict fair chunks of damage on players is impressive. Her ultimate attack sparks fear and panic in the hearts of many, but it’s quite easy to counter.
Players who remain in control of the situation will know she’s not that hard to cancel out of her ultimate. Pharah’s power and damage output is traded of by her vulnerability and small health pool. She’s essential a floating target, making her a easy kill for those with a sharp eye.
Let’s start off at the most basic level. When players hear ‘JUSTICE RAINS FROM ABOVE!’ their instant reaction is to run or take cover. This is where she’s at her strongest. The sheer volume of rockets she fires out at speed allows her to cover a great distance. While she is performing her ultimate, she is hugely open to her enemies.
The most obvious way to cancel her ultimate is to straight up kill her. So lets break down who does this best.
The most obvious counter is Widowmaker, purely down to her sniper. Pharah remains in place while performing her ultimate, allowing Widow to one shot her with a fully powered sniper to the head. It’s a hard counter that can shutdown Pharah within seconds.
Another obvious candidate. His rifle can slice through Pharah at any stage during the game. Primary fire is a steady source of solid damage, while the rocket cluster ends most 200 HP targets with ease. Much like Widow, Solider 76 will have no ease cancelling the ultimate of Pharah.
Depending on how good you are aiming, McRee can be effective in shooting out flying targets. For those who play him more aggressively, using his stun ability is also worth considering. Keep in mind the range isn’t great and you’ll only have one shot to make it count.
Pretty obvious this one. If your aim is true, a fair Hanzo can take her out in a single shot. Just remain calm and don’t panic!
Most people think of Mei’s freezing ability as her best form of attack. Her alternative fire icicle shot is just as deadly. It hits hard, though it is quite tricky to master. The delay from initiating to firing can throw some players off, as too can the projectiles drop.
Pharah’s vulnerable state when using her ultimate is a great opportunity for Mei to icicle her out of the sky…but there’s more than just that.
The ice wall is often seen as a way to simple block enemies and enemy fire, but it has more uses. A number of Pharah players will look to engage in small areas with their ultimate. The speed and power of it can wreck teams holding points in the likes of Nepal and Ilios. When this situation arises, simply place a ice wall directly infront of Pharah. If the wall is well placed (nearly on top of her) she’ll slam rockets into it and kill herself.
One of Overwatch’s best all around ultimate disablers. His chain ability has so many uses that a further piece will be written purely covering them. But for now, let us just focus on his counter to Pharah.
While she may be able to hover around in the air, Pharah is surprisingly open to chain grabs. A single successful grab and shotgun combo will end her. Roadhog’s alternative is also handy, dealing a good hit of damage. His chain is great for cancelling Pharah’s ultimate. Her inability to move while performing it makes for easy pickings for any half decent Roadhog player.
Bastion – Quick handed players (deployed as a turret) can rip her apart. The only issue is 90% of the time, Pharah will look to take out any known deployed Bastions before popping her ultimate.
Although he is technically a support, Zenyatta can take out players quickly. His orb off discord renders targets weak, allowing him (or any of his allies) to wipe out a enemy with ease. This is obviously a issue for Pharah in fully ultimate flow.
Given his small health pool, Zenyatta will probably be the first to die if in target range of Pharah’s rockets, unless his ultimate is in effect.
Her weapons may be the way most people assume to shut Pharah down, but there is a much more effective way. Lunching D.VA’s mech towards a Pharah using her ultimate will cause her to kill herself. It’s the same concept as the ice wall, using Pharah’s damage against her. It’s not easy to pull off, but it can be done surprisingly often.
Those were the best ways to shut out Pharah while she is using her ultimate. Obviously there’s a fair few methods of protecting team mates from it, but those are well known among players. Winston’s & Reinhardt’s shields, Ice walls, Zenyatta’s and Lucio’s ultimate abilties.
Throughout the weeks there will be more guides and methods posted, along with some of them being demonstrated on Twitch (found below).