While Overwatch has several cool-looking characters, Reaper is among the best. In my subjective opinion, no other hero even approaches the levels of badass Reaper has. With that said, he doesn’t only look cool; he’s also very strong, especially with the recent nerfs to McCree, which overtook Reaper’s intended niche – close range tank killing. With the cowboy brought to hell, Reaper should be able to take his rightful spot in the game.
Reapers weapons are called Hellfire Shotguns. When using them, you will have 8 rounds to shoot with the fire rate of of 2 rounds per second. The damage your weapon does depends heavily on the distance between you and the enemy. Reaper excels at short range combat, with his shotguns being… shotguns, meaning that his shots aren’t accurate at all. You shotguns will release 20 pellets per shot, dealing 7 damage each in close and 2 damage in long range. 40 damage in long range or 140 in point blank range? Yeah, don’t even bother fighting people from far away. Instead, get close and wreck them like Death itself.
Once you do kill an enemy, he will drop a Soul Globe. If you collect it, it will restore 50 health to you. This is awesome, because Reaper has 250 health as it is, which makes him tankier than the rest of the offensive heroes. With additional healing after killing enemies, he just gets tankier.
Reaper’s Left Shift… shifts you into Wraith Form. You become a shadow for 3 seconds on an 8 second cooldown. In this form, you will move slightly faster, become immune to damage, move through enemies (because you become a ghost, get it?), and lose the ability to use your guns, ultimate, or E. Which is what saves this ability from being totally OP. This can be used to negate ultimates, stuff that would normally wreck you, like Roadhog combo, or you could just go Wraith to reach that heal before you die if a fight isn’t going your way.
With Reaper excelling at short-range fights, you need some way to get up close and personal with the enemy. Thankfully, that’s precisely what Reaper’s E, Shadow Step, does. Once you activate it, you will see a movable ghost. After placing it in the position you want, click Left Mouse Button to teleport to the marked location after a 2 second cast time, or click Right Mouse Button to cancel.
This ability is what allows Reaper to do what he’s good at – shredding both squishies and tanks from extremely close range. His damage and accuracy suck in medium range, you can’t even retaliate if you get seen by Soldier: 76, for example, so you should avoid open spaces us much as possible. Move through the flanks of the map, use Shadow Step to pass open spaces undetected and get behind your enemies. Once in position, sneak up on them and shred them with Hellfire Shotguns in extremely close range, doing 140 damage per shot. Be sure to Shadow Step from and to safe places because you can’t do anything while stuck in the animation. You can easily get sniped while trying to teleport.
While Reaper can deal with most heroes if played correctly, Roadhog and McCree do prove troublesome to deal with unless you outplay them with Wraith Form. If you get hooked by Roadhog, you need to time it correctly to avoid the following damage. If you manage it, you can kill him somewhat easily because he doesn’t have much to use against you. The danger when facing McCree is similar. You need to predict his Flashbang and Wraith it, or you will most probably die from Fan the Hammer while cc’ed. Even after the nerf, he does 270 damage if he hits you with a full barrel, not missing a shot, which would obviously kill your 250 health ass. McCree is not as troublesome as he used to be, however, because if he used up a couple of bullets before Fanning the Hammer, you will definitely survive, being able to fight him.
Finally, the Play of the Game machine, Death Blossom, Reaper’s Ultimate. Once you activate it, Reaper starts channeling a 3 second long animation, spinning and shooting his shotgun all over the place, dealing 600 damage to anyone in range. Be careful, crowd control breaks the channel, making it a waste. Also, enemies can avoid the damage by breaking line of sight. The best way to use Death Blossom is by going behind enemy lines, finding a moment when enemies are clumped up and under attack, making them less likely to quickly CC and focus you, and jumping into their midst from above, immediately starting to channel upon landing. Unless something goes very wrong, you should get several kills.
While Reaper is almost godlike up in enemies’ faces, it does have its weaknesses. You can’t, I repeat, CANNOT play Reaper as an assault hero like Pharah or Soldier: 76 because it has no range. If you wanted to do damage in a central assault, you would have to get in front of the whole enemy team, which is a terribly bad idea, unless your Ult is up, and event then, it’s not as effective if they see you coming and can prepare. Played correctly, Reaper is a beast however, it can also be very bad when disused. Reaper doesn’t go through the middle. Reaper doesn’t fight from long range. Be like Reaper.