The 6 Hour Challenge

written by Athena


After reading SleepyBeyond’s article, Why you should get 6 hours on 6 heroes BEFORE touching competitive, I spent a week focused on getting 6 more heroes to 6 hours. I went into this challenge as what I would consider a veteran, having played in every competitive season. To gain the most knowledge from these heroes, I used the 6 heroes with which I had the lowest amount of play time. Heroes I had barely, or never, touched. Those lingering at the bottom of my list that I cannot even find in the hero lineup. I went beyond my so-so heroes to the untouchables and I grinded out 6 painful hours. As a healer main and relatively non-aggressive person, my untouchables were: Genji, Pharah, Hanzo, McCree, Doomfist, and Tracer. Your untouchable heroes are likely completely different from mine, but this challenge will help you become a more flexible Overwatch player.



At first, I had to force myself to play these characters and resist the urge to swap to what I know and feel comfortable on. To top that off, before the most recent update, other players could see that I was a Mercy main and would demand a healer to go with their 5 insta-lock dpsers.  What the f*ck were you thinking?! About an hour in, I stopped whining and felt much more comfortable on these heroes. I ended up taking the game’s advice many times in the form of “Hold F1 to view Hero details”, and I stopped face smashing my keyboard in a panic. Oh, hey! You’re not so bad at this! After 3 hours, I felt like I knew what I was doing. I knew that McCree’s roll, Tracer’s blink, or Genji’s deflect could save my life if and only if I timed them correctly. You are a GOD! The hours after that were a blur for Genji, Tracer, and McCree. I was no longer avoiding these characters; it was painful, but worth it. TAKE BREAKS!




I also knew that I was not meant to play Pharah, Hanzo, or Doomfist. These characters were painful throughout the 6 hours and I began avoiding Overwatch. I am a grounded Pharah, no-aim Hanzo, and constantly dead Doomfist. I highly advise trying 2 hours on your least played hero, and as Elsa sings, “Let it go.” If playing these characters, ruins your game. LET IT GO! Find your own personal strengths and weaknesses. Communicate these to your team. No one is going to be good at everything.            


I now understand how and why certain abilities cause characters to move in different ways. Tracers were especially hard for me to heal as they seem to disappear in the blink of an eye. (^_~) Now, I can predict where they will be. A Tracer is one of the best characters to fly to if you need to escape. Tracking your Tracer and being aware of where she might rewind to is very valuable when you find yourself stuck in the middle of a battle. Don’t even get me started on Doomfist. Here is your Mercy, faithfully keeping you alive and whoosh, you go to save the day (or your ass) and leave her literally stranded with no one to tag. If she is really lucky, a tank will charge in or she will survive until you land; to once again, save your ass.



I highly suggest continuing practice for any alternative characters you want to pick up. Having experience on all of the characters has given me insight on how to better heal those characters. For example, Genji moves very differently than Tracer and I can now track them both much better. This also (most definitely) applies to DPS mains. Knowing how far Mercy can reach to top you off or being in LOS for Ana/Zen/Brig is huge. Understanding that your healer must keep the tanks and other healers alive while DPS have faster/special movements to escape and find health packs is HUGE. Spending 2 hours healing others, might change the playstyle of an “I need healing,” but you must come to me on the other side of the map in the midst of battle, type Genji. I respect anyone who at least tries to learn other roles; even if it’s not their playstyle. I encourage you to take the 6 hour challenge. However, I recommend starting with just 2 hours on the characters that you really hate. If you can do that, you can do anything.



To further challenge myself, I made it to 6 hours on all of the characters. Some of them really turned me off, but I learned a lot about the entire roster.


Who are your untouchables? Are you ready to take the challenge? Tell us your results!


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