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Overwatch: 5 Best Ultimate Abilities (And 5 That Need Improvement)

With Overwatch's array of heroes, play maps, and game modes, every character varies in effectiveness (depending on the match). While most heroes are given a well-balanced package of weapons and basic abilities, it's their "ultimate abilities" that often impact games the most.

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However, not all of them are equal. While some offer immense value that can single-handedly turn a game when used correctly, others have proven to be too weak or difficult to use effectively and are in dire need of re-tuning.

10 Best: Graviton Surge (Zarya)

While Graviton Surge can be useful on its own as it helps to pull enemies out of cover or stop the opposing team from advancing through a choke point, its best feature is that it helps to make everyone else's attacks and abilities better.

It isn't really difficult to catch at least three enemies in Zarya's black hole and while caught, enemies become sitting ducks for DPS characters to take out. This versatility, including both area denial and damage promotion, makes Graviton Surge one of the best ultimate abilities in Overwatch.

9 Needs Improvement: Infra-Sight (Widowmaker)

Though Widowmakers look has proven to be a hit with overwatch cosplayers, Widowmaker's ultimate ability isn't as impactful as it should be. By highlighting enemy combatants in red for 15 seconds, Widowmaker's ability can certainly benefit a team as it allows the player to predict movements and help the other members avoid ambushes.

However, the problem with this is that both Hanzo and Sombra are able to do something similar (though on a smaller scale), which takes away some of its impact. Without changing it entirely, Widowmaker's "infra-sight" could be improved if they decrease the charge speed of her sniper rifle.

8 Best: Transcendence (Zenyatta)

Transcendence is the perfect combination of easy-to-use and is incredibly powerful. The ability's effect is twofold, as it makes Zenyatta invulnerable and continuously heals everything within a short distance. Given that Zenyatta can still move while in this special state, it's easy to heal injured teammates or pre-emptively trigger healing during an important positional advance.

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Furthermore, Transcendence is notable because it can shut down many damage dealing ultimate attacks. A team can easily withstand a Dragonstrike or RIP-tire with Transcendence's protection.

7 Needs Improvement: Deadeye (McCree)

While McCree's "ultimate" may pay homage to the character roots found in some of the best classic Western movies, it's incredibly difficult to make work.

With the potential to take out an entire team with one quick burst, this upside needs improving as the low-health McCree has to stand exposed and slowly lock onto targets (which can simply step out of the line of sight to avoid damage). To be used for more than a quick reload, Deadeye would be improved by lowering the potential targets it can hit while decreasing the time it takes to fire.

6 Best: EMP (Sombra)

Sombra's basic abilities focus on disrupting the team instead of dealing direct damage and her ultimate ability, EMP, is an incredibly strong extension of the gameplay archetype. EMP doesn't deal any damage, but it hacks every enemy player, stopping them from doing anything other than their basic attack. They also render health packs only useful to Sombra and her allies.

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This effect is devastating any time enemies are grouped up and is easy to use effectively on area-control maps. Furthermore, it's one of only a few abilities that cancel out other enemy ultimates already in progress.

5 Needs Improvement: Valkyrie (Mercy)

While Mercy is a great single-target healer in Overwatch, she's gone through quite a few changes over the years, and her ultimate is not currently in a good spot. Her original ultimate from the game's release, Resurrect (which revives a recently downed teammate) was shifted over to a regular ability, leaving her in need of a brand new ultimate, created from scratch.

While there are certainly positives to giving Mercy the ability to fly and lets her Caduceus staff chain to more than one ally, as an ultimate ability, it fails to have an immediate and significant effect.

4 Best: Sound Barrier (Lucio)

Lucio is an amazing support character that excels in point-capture maps (which allows him to utilize his healing and speed boost to their fullest effect). His ultimate ability, Sound Barrier, functions as a boosted version of his passive and adds incredible survivability to anyone in its casting area.

Equally important to its raw strength is its versatility. While boosting the health of nearby teammates is useful as a last-ditch defense against a wave of enemies, it's also a great foil to offensively oriented enemy ultimate abilities, rendering them largely useless.

3 Needs Improvement: Whole Hog (Roadhog)

Roadhog's Whole Hog isn't bad, it's just much more situational than the better ultimate abilities in the game. The low damage but high push Gatling gun does have uses as a brief area denial tool or to finish off an enemy that's stuck inside of a tight space, but it does almost nothing in open spaces. What's more detrimental is that it takes away Roadhog's ability to heal, making it easy for DPS characters to focus on him from beyond his gun's range.

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For this ability to be more functional, Roadhog either needs to be able to cancel the move so he can heal or gain armor while it's active.

2 Best: Blizzard (Mei)

Any ability that takes movement or attack control away from enemies is usually incredibly strong, and Mei's Blizzard does both. With enough diameter to almost lock down entire capture points, Blizzard is equally useful when defending or attacking.

The delayed movement can keep enemies away long enough to stall out a victory at the end of the round, and once frozen, enemies become easy targets for higher damage characters to take out. While this ability is slightly less impactful on escort maps (especially offense), it's still one of the most devastating and foolproof ultimate abilities in Overwatch.

1 Needs Improvement: Meteor Strike (Doomfist)

Doomfist's ultimate has seen both ends of the usefulness spectrum, moving it from incredibly scary to incredibly situational. Initially, this brawler's Meteor Strike was capable of one-shot killing a large percentage of the roster and could take out multiple enemies if they were relatively close together.

However, the ability's nerf focused too much on damage area, making it too easy to sidestep and leaving Doomfist in a vulnerable position after use. The ability is more useful now as an escape technique than an attack, which is disappointing for an offensive powerhouse.

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