Ever since the release of the Shimada brothers into Nexus, they’ve been a controversial subject. It’s a fact that while there’s variance on what some of the characters from other universes bring, the case is different with Overwatch heroes. Due to the limited number of abilities in the shooter, they’re usually translated directly into Heroes of the Storm, without seeing many changes. Hanzo seems to be as much of a nuisance as he is in the shooter.
So, what makes him better than the rest? Well, just like he’s a superior version of Widowmaker, one could argue about that, he also seems to outclass the rest of the assassins in the Heroes of the Storm roster. In order to make up for the slower attack speed that gives the good old bow feeling, his range is on average 30% higher than that of most ranged heroes. Standing at 7.5, with second best being Nova and Raynor at 6.5, while 90% of the cast have 5.5 range. The reason for this difference is probably because Hanzo is a sustained damage and not a burst assassin, right? If that was true this article wouldn’t exist. He can practically do both, since the auto attacks and Storm Bow are both such high damage, then surely that must be the weak spot? That’s also not the case, as the cooldown on his Q is very low (4 seconds) and Scatter Arrow even though doubling that at 8 seconds is still nothing to worry about. Storm bow gets even better with a talent, allowing you to get mercenary camps really quick. He surely isn’t the best in keeping a steady DPS, but he’s definitely not the worst and in the current meta where long-range pokes are favoured over direct confrontation.
Sonic arrow is usually underrated, but is perhaps the best ability in his kit, giving vision in an area or tracking, it allows for safe taking of objectives and preventing ganks. His Dragonstrike may be hard to land, but when it hits properly, barely anyone survives, while Dragon’s Arrow is usually the better choice, as it provides both good damage and crowd control from across the map. And the passive is just the cherry on top, allowing you to easily escape over terrain potentially into the fog of war, without having to worry about spending mana to do it. Hanzo is a beast when properly catered by his team, but even left on his own he’s still a serious threat.
Overall, he’s the better pick in 90% of the cases, so why would anyone ever choose a different ranged assassin is a question without a clear answer. Taking away some of his health pool or reducing his attack range might be the way to balance things out and make for a more diverse meta. In the competitive scene he’s just as popular as in pubs. For a hero with 79% popularity, 54% is really impressive and something doesn’t seem right. Either the meta’s going to shift or we’ll see some nerfs soon.