For certain map types and certain team compositions, I like to start defense rounds with the pistol when playing Mercy. With Mercy 1.0 it was not a great strategy to start shooting at the beginning of the round, given that your team might die and you can’t Resurrect them yet. The best choice is to heal or damage boost. However, with Mercy 2.0… you have a free pick reversal. If you can maintain good position, with your team squarely between yourself and the enemies — fire away wherever the enemies are likely to appear.
- It builds ultimate: I usually generate 5-15% ultimate charge here before my team is even damaged. If you output damage when it’s safe to do so, you’ll win against the healbot Mercy every time (and built your ultimate faster than her, given you’ll grab both damage and healing charge).
- I have even very rarely gotten a pick for my team in this way. It is super satisfying to kill a DPS such as McCree with a bunch of pistol spam on the first attack. The pick potential is great, especially because it’s demoralizing for the enemy team — and can start a sprinkle of enemy team salt (unfortunate, but an advantage for your team).
- I prefer to pistol if I am not solo-healing; if solo-healing, I know my ultimate will be up quickly anyway, so I don’t see the point of taking any risk by pulling out the pistol.
- At higher ranks this becomes more dangerous. These aren’t just Mercy pistol spam spots. They are also sniper peek points, Junkrat/Pharah spam points, etc. It becomes a lot more dangerous to pistol at higher ranks.
- As always, it’s important to watch for obvious dangers, such as heavy damage to your allies, enemy dive team compositions, snipers, and Zarya barriers.
- Keep in mind the enemy knows where you are. Shooting reveals your position to even long-range enemies who might not see your healbeam yet.
Escort / Control Point (KOTH)
On Control Point maps (Lijiang Tower, Nepal, Ilios, Oasis): the teams come together very quickly and you run the risk of teammates dying when you might have saved them with some heals. On Escort maps, pretty much the same thing holds true on Defense. You can just spam where the enemies are likely to come from to build some lucky ultimate charge. You can spam longer of your team has a shield or other damage mitigation, too! On attack — given that the enemy team is already set up to output damage, you’ll likely want to avoid pistoling much at all.
None of the KOTH or Escort maps really have specific spots I like to spam as of this writing.
Capture Point (2CP)
Temple of Anubis Defense
Volskaya Industries Defense
Stand in the left-hand room, crouching on the stairs. You can get your pistol shots underneath the chair and to the choke with excellent cover and little risk of taking damage.
This one is a little more dangerous, but you can stand beside the building to the left of choke and position your pistol at the first corner the attackers need to round.
At the car behind the defensive choke, you can position your pistol at the corner and remain relatively well-hidden. The screenshot is shown crouched, which is required to fire the shots in the correct place.
King’s Row Defense
Never, ever, ever stand out in the open. Widow is a common pick (even mediocre Widows can snipe from the top window, get a pick, and then switch to push with their team). Getting shot in the head at the start of the match usually means you lose the point and sometimes even snowball the second. If you want to pistol, stand outside of LOS of the second-floor window and point your crosshair at the choke itself. Aiming at the bus from behind the cover of the right-hand building is a good idea. Sniper picks are way too common on this map to risk open positions.
King’s Row Attack – Second Point
Hollywood Defense – A
Note: you must crouch to shoot the spawn door.