Overwatch’s newest hero Baptiste fails to warrant the DPS title and fails to impress

A picture of Overwatch’s logo. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

On February 27, 2019 Overwatch released their 30th hero, Baptiste. He’s a DPS (Damage-Per-Second) and Support hybrid, with many abilities that keep allies alive when they’re near death.

Baptiste is a Haitian man who was orphaned during the Great Omnic War. As he grew up, he learned to be hostile towards everyone but his friends, and he eventually joined the international terrorist organization Talon. While it was a lucrative move, his beliefs clashed with Talon’s, and he eventually left. His philosophy then led him to become a combat medic. In order to better explain this choice, his reveal trailer has Baptiste say, “I’m going to fight for a better world. For some, that means a bandage. For others, a bullet.”

The first thing I noticed about Baptiste was his design that seems awkward in my opinion. First of all, his chest guard is way too similar to Genji’s and should indicate there’s a relation between them; however, as is currently known, they probably don’t know each other. While it is arguable that Genji was once a Blackwatch member that  eventually turned into Talon, my counter argument would be that Genji got his current armor after his Blackwatch armor, which has been shown with his Blackwatch skin.

Also, his color palette is weird. While blue and orange, his main colors, are complementary, the way they are used here make them clash. The blue is very light, whereas the orange is extremely bright and highly saturated, so it grossly overpowers the blue. This wouldn’t be such a problem, except that healers are the most targeted characters in Overwatch, so having such a noticeable color be so prominent on your body is a bad idea for a healer like Baptiste.

Finally, Baptiste has no yellow in his design, which is a problem because yellow is the color of healing in Overwatch. All the other major healing heroes, such as Mercy, Zenyatta, Lucio, and even Roadhog, have yellow in their designs. Even heroes like Moira and Ana have at least a little yellow, but Baptiste has none.

When it comes to gameplay, Baptiste, as a DPS/Support, fills a niche that a lot of people didn’t know needed to be filled. Namely, rather than revitalize allies, he simply aims to keep them alive long enough to deal a little more damage. The most prominent way he does this is through his secondary fire, which fires a grenade that explodes into a cloud that heals allies, but not himself. It has a weight to it, so it has a drop rate, similar to Junkrat’s primary. He also has a passive ability that builds up kinetic energy when he crouches. The longer the crouch, the more energy he builds. Once his crouch is released, he leaps into the air with the energy he saved up. This helps him aim his secondary and scout enemies from up high.

In contrast, his primary is an SMG-type weapon that fires three rounds of low-moderate damage bullets with a brief delay between each round. It has a lot of bullets in it, so Baptiste doesn’t have to reload often. His LSHIFT is an area-of-effect healing ability that restores an impressive amount of health to himself and allies. He can also deploy a sentry that casts an area on the ground for a few seconds. While in this area, allies’ health can’t fall to zero; they can still take damage, but, once their health is one, it will remain there until the ability ends or the sentry is destroyed. Finally, his ultimate is a deployable wall; all ally projectiles that pass through the wall deal double damage and healing.

While playing Baptiste, you’ll want to get to high ground so that you can scout ahead and all your deployable abilities are easy to land. This also gives you an advantage in being able to scout ahead to prepare the deployables. However, Baptiste should never stray too far from the team, because he is, first and foremost, a healer. Baptiste also counters GOATs (the current go to strategy in ranks above gold, which is very effective but hated by players) very well, which many fans are happy about. The main strategy of GOATs is to have Zarya use here Graviton then use several different ultis to kill the entire enemy team off. Your E however negates that, and so this disrupts their main strategy, and his ultimate allows his allies to quickly break shields and kill tanks.

To counter Baptiste, simply shoot down his E; he has no escape methods and his damage is relatively low, so he’ll go down fairly quickly, even compared to other healers.

Despite being a DPS, Baptiste doesn’t deal enough damage to be used as one. He’s best used to delay death; pairing him with Mercy makes your team very difficult to kill. That being said, I think Baptiste is weak in terms of gameplay and design, and he isn’t fun to play as and against.


Austin Miller

I am in 12th grade. I am a reporter for the magazine.

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