Welcome to part two of the Overwatch Character Highlight series. Today we're looking at Junkrat!
Junkrat is one of the most difficult characters to play against—the very nature of his weapons makes him hard to predict and hard to counter. He is absolutely a defense character, his specialty is clearing groups of enemies by chucking bombs into groups. Junkrat is excellent at clearing a control point or getting people off of a payload. He's not very good at one on one combat against any other character, as his primary fire can actually hurt himself, but when it comes to a lot of enemies at a distance, there are very few characters who can do his job better.
Junkrat's Abilities Include:
- Primary Fire
- Junkrat's main fire launches several bouncy grenades. Junkrat is one of the few characters who doesn't use a gun, and when you learn how his bombs bounce, you can angle them into hard to reach places that a standard character wouldn't be able to get to. Because of the way they bounce, they're hard to avoid, especially if you fire them from different angles. Unlike nearly every other character, it's in your best interest to fire them when you're not sure if you're going to hit someone. That is to say, randomly firing your grenades is one of Junkrat's best strategies.
- Steel Trap
- One of Junkrat's more tactical abilities is a trap that he can lay down. When stepped on, an opponent takes a little damage and is completely immobilized for a few seconds. Despite what you see when you place it, it's actually less visible to the opponents. This is often best left on a control point where an enemy will likely step on it and get hit by a teammate.
- Explosive Mine
- Junkrat's explosive mine has many different uses. Most commonly, if Junkrat throws down the mine and and detonates it while jumping over it, he can launch himself into the air. While in the air, he doesn't have much of a tactical advantage, as all his weapons and skills are slow, however he can use this jump to reach high places he wouldn't normally be able to get to. You can also throw the mine into the air; it wont go as far as your grenades, but it's a more controlled arc that you can finish off some enemies with. The mine itself can also knock enemies into the air like it does yourself, great for disorienting an opponent.
- Ultimate Ability
- Junkrat's ultimate unleashes his Riptire, a wheel that you take control of and drive towards enemies. The tire, when detonated, causes a huge explosion that will kill any nearby enemies. The tire has a wall climbing ability, similar to Hanzo and Genji; by holding jump you can climb any wall and sneak up on enemies. You are vulnerable while in control of the tire. However, if you die, you won't lose control of the tire. Your tire can also be shot down very easily, as it does not have much health. If you're going at the enemies head on you should move erratically.
- Passive Ability: Total Mayhem
- Whenever Junrkat dies, he drops several bombs where he died. This is meaningless for long range characters who take him out, but for offensive ones like Tracer, Reaper or even D.Va out of her suit, if they run over your corpse as you die (which they'll tend to do since they're forward pushing characters) there's a good chance they'll die just by this ability.
Tips and Tricks for playing Junkrat
- Junkrat can have a hard time fighting offensive characters—like Tracer and Reaper—because they can be very hard to hit with your bombs. Throw down your trap to grab any enemies that are circling around you. Even if they manage to kill you while trapped, they're in a prime position to get hit by the bombs you drop after death.
- A good combo is to lay down your trap on a place an enemy will likely step, and then place your bomb on the trap. Assuming neither is seen or destroyed, when you get the signal that someone stepped on it, just detonate your mine and weak and damaged characters will go down for an easy kill. The catch is your mine makes the trap more noticable, you can place the mine nearby, but then you risk not doing enough damage.
As a Junkrat player, your job should be to play as randomly as possible, don't let your opponents get a sense for where you're shooting your grenades. Use Junkrat to clear control points and to hold an enemy team back by constantly barraging them with bombs.
Heroes Junkrat Is Great Against
Bastion and Torbjorn are easy targets for Junkrat. Bastion in turret mode won't be able to react in time, especially if you do damage on his weak spot, and Torbjorn's turret won't be able to move at all. Winston, D.Va, and Roadhog are all decent targets just out of sheer size; they can soak up a lot of damage, but they won't be able to avoid your attacks very easily.
Counter Heroes To Watch Out For
Pharah is by far the most furstrating character to deal with as Junkrat. Her inherent nature makes it nearly impossible for Junkrat to hit her, she's almost always in the air which is hard to reach with either the primary fire bombs or the explosive mine. Her rockets are essentially a more accurate form of Junkrat's grenades, she loses the random aspect that Junkrat gets, but the fact is she can easily hit Junkrat and he can't easily hit her.
As I've said, fast offensive characters are going to be trouble for Junkrat, they're designed for up close, fast fights and that's naturally not a good situation for Junkrat. These are also the characters who are going to be good at destroying your Rip Tire. So if you find yourself against a lot of characters like this and you really can't find a away around them as Junkrat, consider switching to Mei, who excels at one on one fights.
That concludes part 2! What do you think of this series so far? If there's any strategies I didn't think to write about in this feel free to leave a comment below!