How to use sound effectively in Overwatch
Lets get this out of the way first, if you don’t use a microphone to communicate in Overwatch you need to start now. Communication in a team will increase your win-rate unless all you do is sing into the mic. Overwatch is a game where sound is incredibly important. In Counter-Strike players are able to use the sound of footsteps and gunshots to locate enemies with great accuracy. The same is possible in Overwatch so if you are tryharding you need to turn off any background music or sound and turn up the game volume. In case you didn’t know, crouching makes your footsteps silent, with the exception of Roadhog who makes noise even when crouching and Zenyatta who never has footsteps. If you are flanking you should crouch to not give away your location and if you are vulnerable to a flank pay attention to the enemies footsteps to give you extra awareness. But there is another way to take advantage of sound in Overwatch. Because every ultimate ability has a sound queue you need to memorize every queue early on. A neat scientific fact is that your brain is able to quicker respond to an auditory queue than to a visual queue. Also Auditory queues in Overwatch can sometimes be clearer to interpret than visual queues. For example, when an enemy Reinhardt uses his earthshatter it is easier to listen for the HAMMER DOWN! Than to see him begin to lift his hammer. If you are in a 1 on 1 Reinhardt game of ultimate chicken you should be watching for him to drop his shield to put up yours but because of how easy it is to fake an ultimate you can get caught off guard. If instead you listen for the audio queue it is significantly easier to block a Reinhardt ultimate by listening. Using this tactic I have become consistently able to block Earthshatter stuns with Winston’s Bubble and Orisa’s portable shield. With careful positioning and luck you can also do things like reflect a graviton surge as Genji or be quicker to use a defensive ult in response to a Nano-boosted Tactical visor. Another way to use sound more effectively in Overwatch is to press tab and look at the enemy team comp. If the enemy team has a flanker like Pharah or Widowmaker and you cannot see them or hear them they could be potentially flanking your team. This information will allow you to reposition to be safer from a flank if you are playing a vulnerable backline hero.