What You Need To Know Before Playing Ashe
Ashe was unveiled at this year’s BlizzCon and the blood-thirsty outlaw has been making a name for herself on the public test server. The Deadlock Gang’s leader is now officially on Overwatch and she’s a hella a lot of fun to play.
She can shred through even the tankiest of foes with her semi-automatic rifle, which delivers both pinpoint accuracy and rapid-fire rounds. She even has excellent zoning potential with her explosive Dynamite ability and robotic companion B.O.B. The outlaw’s kit has very minor similarities to Overwatch’s existing roster, so she can take some getting used to, but those who enjoy the gunslinging nature of McCree and the high skill ceiling of Widowmaker will love Blizzard’s latest villain.
Join us as we break down all Ashe’s abilities, skills, and go over the tips you need to master her in competitive play.
The Viper (Primary Fire)
Ashe’s primary source of damage is from her semi-automatic rifle. Tapping the firing button repeatedly unleashes a barrage of rapid-fire single shots while aiming down the Viper’s sights delivers a reduced rate of fire, but greatly enhances Ashe’s precision and damage. The Viper holds 12 rounds in total and has a falloff range of 20 to 40 metres, making her extremely deadly in close quarters and mid-range engagements.
Despite her ability to melt both squishy and tanky targets, the reload time of her Viper sits at a whopping 4.25 seconds. While her high damage more than makes up for this lengthy reload time, it’s important to be aware of this before going into your next engagement. Try to reload when you’re grouped with your teammates or well behind cover.
The legendary outlaw doesn’t just have to rely on her fiendish firearm to crush her foes – in fact, she can also make an explosive entrance with her Dynamite ability. Ashe can throw the explosive into a bunch of grouped enemies before blowing it up immediately with a single shot from her Viper. Simply throwing the dynamite into chokepoints and leaving it to detonate can also be a great way to zone players away from key objectives.
The explosion from Dynamite also lights enemies on fire, dealing burn damage for five seconds. While the initial blast from the explosive won’t kill those with full health, the added incendiary effect can quickly shred through enemy health, barriers and turrets. Ashe’s Dynamite has a five-metre radius and a 10-second cooldown, so use it to deal as much AoE damage as possible.
Ashe may not be the most nimble character in Overwatch’s growing roster, but she does have the ability to get out of danger when things get hairy. Her Coach Gun blasts all enemies in front of her, knocking them away and propelling Ashe backwards. If a tank or hyper-aggressive DPS threat happens to creep up on the outlaw, she can use her Coach Gun to avoid an untimely demise.
Coach Gun like Junkrat’s mines can also be used to launch Ashe into areas that would otherwise be inaccessible, so try to get a vantage point whenever you can. There are a total of 15 pellets and the full blast can deal a maximum 90 damage when fired in a nine-metre radius. It’s a decent chunk of damage and can quickly dissuade Ashe’s pursuers, but the 10-second cooldown can leave you high and dry, so use this ability sparingly.
B.O.B. is arguably the most unique ability in the entire game. Blizzard really outdid themselves when they gave the Deadlock outlaw the ability to summon an omnic sidekick. Once Ashe gives the order, B.O.B. charges forward, knocking enemies into the air before laying down fire with his arm cannons.
B.O.B. charges in the direction Ashe is facing and once he smashes into an enemy or a wall, or travels 65m, the bloodthirsty robot begins shooting all nearby targets. Ashe’s partner in crime deals 120 impact damage and knocks enemies up in the air, while his Arm Cannon fires eight bullets per second, dishing out 14 damage per bullet. Throw B.O.B. down on a capture point and simply watch the mayhem unfold. No one is safe when this omnic threat has been unleashed.
While Ashe can eviscerate both close and mid-range opponents with her Viper, skilled Ashe players will need to master the art of tracking moving opponents. While the Viper may be a powerful tool, it doesn’t dish out enough damage to one-shot 200 HP enemies, dealing a maximum of 170 ADS headshot damage. As a result, you’ll want to try and hit as many consecutive headshots as possible before finishing targets off with the Viper’s primary fire.
Ashe’s primary fire may be on the weaker side, but it does have a higher rate of fire, making it extremely useful when poking and harassing your foes. The outlaw’s rifle does have one huge caveat, however, in that you constantly need to be reloading. Rather than reloading the entire clip in one swift animation, Ashe reloads one bullet at a time. This can become a problem when you need the extra firepower in close-range engagements, so try to reload often to avoid getting caught short.
By throwing Dynamite onto an objective and unleashing B.O.B. you can lockdown and capture a point with little to no resistance, especially if you throw both of these abilities into a chokepoint. Forcing your enemies to walk through both fire and a hail of bullets is one of the most satisfying ways to win a round in Overwatch.
B.O.B. works extremely well with Ana as she can both buff his damage with Nano Boost and heal him from afar with her Biotic Rifle. If you’re about to lose the point or need some extra firepower on the payload, then B.O.B. can give you the push you need to turn the tide. For those looking to deliver lethal shots and explosive plays, Ashe is a great pick.
Ashe’s low mobility can often make her a prime target for those that rely on diving into the backline, such as D.Va or Winston. Getting a high ground vantage point over your enemies should be your main priority in most games, as this will give you a lot more opportunities to use Ashe’s ADS shots.
Ashe’s biggest weakness is her lack of survivability and utility on the field. Her Coach Gun can be effective when repositioning and launching yourself into vantage points, but its 10-second cooldown means you’ll need to take extra care when pushing onto the objective. While Coach Gun can get you out of some rather tricky situations, it’s not as effective as other more mobile skills, so you’ll need to constantly be aware of your positioning.
Word of warning – Ashe is a difficult hero to play. She’s exceptionally skill-based, with a powerful rifle and an array of abilities which require some serious precision to get right. We’d recommend hopping into the training range for a while and warming up your aim, as even veterans of Widowmaker or McCree may struggle with the accuracy required here.