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Quick Hero Guide: Pharah

By Diploid - 11th October 2016 - 18:15 PM

Greetings, welcome to another iteration of Quick Hero Guide!

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Today, let's see how we can play with Pharah effectively.
  • Pharah is very comparable to Junkrat in terms of damage. Pharah's rockets and Junkrat's grenades both do 120 on a direct hit. The main difference being Junkrat has a considerably higher rate of fire, but Pharah has an extra 120 damage before reloading; putting her total damage capability up to 720.

  • Have you played Quake or TF2? You'll feel very at home with how the rockets "feel." The rocket speed is very similar to that of the TF2, you'll be landing airshots with hardly any practice.

  • Flying around is obviously very powerful but if the other team has a lot of hitscan (S:76, McCree, Widow etc.) it can be hard to stay up there for long or even at all. If you're getting shot while floating around...don't float around. You can still use her jump jets to get on top of buildings that others can't reach.

  • You can actually put in a lot of work against a Reinhardt. If you fly above him - has to be directly above him or very close - you can hit him and his shield can't save him. He can aim his shield straight up, but that leaves him exposed to the other five heroes on your team that can kill him. If the other team has a Reinhardt, you should be pressuring at least the way he positions his shield. Be very watchful how Reinhardt's shield is positioned.

  • In most cases, you're going to be using Pharah's fuel (holding space) to travel horizontally. It doesn't give you hardly an vertical height, but it can move you a good distance horizontally. That being said, tap the fuel and don't hold it down. If you hold it down, you'll be wasting a lot of potential horizontal distance. Tap it often enough to keep you at roughly the same height throughout the entire match. Remember to tap.

  • Landing direct hits is very important. The difference between 120 damage from a direct and 70 from a splash hit is very big. You're going to need at least two rockets (even if they're both directs) to kill anyone with full HP. This means that if two of your rockets are splashed, you are barely doing more than one direct with two rockets. Landing directs is very important to master.

  • Barrage easily has the highest damage potential out of any ability or ultimate in the whole game. It's not even close. At around 30 rockets per second that deal 40-60 damage for 3 seconds, the minimum damage you'll get if all the rockets hit is 3600 with the maximum being 5400. Even with the minimum damage, you can burn through a whole Reinhardt shield and still have enough damage left to completely burn through and kill an entire sound barrier on any hero. Keep in mind that that's the minimum damage output, meaning the only way anyone is surviving is if they have a Zenyatta ultimate; and the only one who's going to be surviving is Zenyatta.

  • The example above assumes that all rockets hit, which is extremely unlikely. In reality, Pharah's ultimate takes a good deal of practice to aim with if you're outside of close range. It does a lot of damage and doesn't need to be used in combo, but you need to kill people before they have a chance to kill you (very easy for them to do) meaning you have to be very accurate. Your best bet overall is getting behind or on the side of the enemies almost point blank, then obliterating them. Generally the closer you are, the better.

  • Concussive blast is mostly useful in three ways. One, you have to get in or out of somewhere fast. You can blast yourself a good distance away/towards it. Second, you can knock people off. Lastly, if someone is moving very unpredictably or is hard for you to hit, you can blast them with this and they'll move in a very predictable straight line, which is the perfect time to get some damage in.
There are other characters with quicker movement and get-away ability, such as Tracer/Genji/Lucio. Except those heroes are only 3-dimensional, they can go side-to-side and up but they are bound by gravity to return to the ground. Pharah is the exception. She can move in any direction in the air and it is downright impossible to predict her movement. Her jetpack refuel time is ridiculously quick for her rocket damage capability, meaning she will remain a dangerous hero even when her fuel does run out. Pharah excels at short and long range, so pick your fights accordingly. Blast Roadhog, Reaper, D.Va, etc. from range, and get up close with heroes who need precision (since you don't need precision) like Zenyatta, Widowmaker, and Soldier.

Try to flank, get quick picks on their supports/squishy DPS classes, or chip away at the tank's health from a distance. If you're not flanking, try to engage when your team is making a push, so you can fly above the enemy team while they're distracted and get easy picks.
Use concussive blast and splash damage to separate people from their team, or more importantly, use it on yourself to make quick escapes. This allows you to play aggressively without dying.


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