We love Overwatch. So we assembled 22 of our best writers and set them to work—a writer to jump into the skin (or robotic shell) of each character. The result is 22 odes. You can use the “Overwatch odes” tag to leaf through them all, or use the handy list at the bottom of this post.
Screw Genji, screw Reaper, screw Zarya: Mercy is the most terrifying character in Overwatch.
Watch her dance through the backline, a gossamer beam of gold and azure granting vitality and strength to her allies. Watch her float high in the heavens with Pharah, lingering there like a blond-haired specter of love and death. Watch as your team empties clip after clip on the enemy Reinhardt, only to realize in white-knuckled horror that Mercy has been around the corner healing him the whole time. Observe in frustration as the enemy Mercy glides to her allies at the very last possible moment, dodging 10 high-cooldown abilities and throwing your entire team on tilt.
Rejoice in certain victory during the final 30 seconds of the game as your team finally sets up its glorious three-Ultimate stack, massacring the enemy and walking the payload toward its final destination. Then listen for the three most ominous words in Overwatch, yelled in glorious, unmistakable German: Helden sterben nicht!
You can’t translate it, but you know exactly what it means. Five ghost bodies emerge from the void, manifesting into meat and steel before your eyes. As they eviscerate your sad, impotent comrades, you are powerless to do anything but sit there quietly in the backline, awaiting a lonely, miserable death.
And there’s the enemy Mercy, halo around her head, corners of her lips folded up in an eternal smirk. From this moment, you will never again misconstrue her words: when she exclaims in triumph that Heroes never die, she’s not talking about you or your teammates—she’s basking in her own damn glory.
Genji – Genji is with you
McCree – Who you kidding? McCree is Overwatch‘s true shooter
Pharah – Don’t play fair, play Pharah, exclusively
Reaper – In defense of Reaper, the patron saint of mall-goth teens
Soldier 76 – Soldier 76 is here to make everyone else look good
Tracer – A series of limericks about Tracer, because why not
Bastion – Bastion is the machine pointed at the world
Hanzo – Hanzo “looks like a good man,” my Japanese mom raves
Junkrat – I have fallen in love with Junkrat
Mei – Here comes Mei, the badass nerd hell-bent on revenge
Torbjörn – An ode to hard-working, salt-of-the-earth Torbjörn
Widowmaker – Widowmaker made a widow of me
D.Va – An ode to D.Va, the sassiest dream girl this side of Overwatch
Reinhardt – An ode to Reinhardt, tortured scion of a broken land
Roadhog – An ode to Roadhog is an ode to ugliness
Winston – Winston, the Science Gorilla, is in charge
Zarya – Zarya makes Mother Russia her bitch