Fast and explosive while still requiring unparalleled precision, Dive was meta for over a year before the advent of Brigitte in Overwatch. While the meta on most maps has now transitioned to GOATS, Dive remains incredibly strong on some maps. Whether you like the classic Winston Dive or prefer to upset the order with Wrecking Ball, we’re here to get into the details.
Dive is one of the oldest compositions in the game. From the 2016 World Cup where Miro annihilated on his Winston to the modern iterations with Wrecking Balls and even GOATS, Dive changed the game. The comp is all about high mobility, splitting apart the enemy team, and focusing in on them one player at a time.
While teams had experimented with Dive-esque comps as early as closed beta, the vast majority of teams preferred heavy comps centered around a Reinhardt. The major upset to the order came in the 2016 World Cup. Miro, main tank for South Korea, played Winston like no one had seen before, using his mobility to tear teams apart. The following year, Dive cemented itself as the go-to comp of 2017. Practically every Contenders match featured a mirror matchup of Winston, D.Va, Tracer, and Lucio. While Dive’s domination was brought to an end with Brigitte’s introduction, it has seen a revival in play following the introduction of Wrecking Ball and GOATS-focused nerfs.
Dive relies fundamentally on its maneuverability: diving onto a single target, isolating them, and focusing them down with a barrage of burst damage. The basic Dive consists of a Winston, D.Va, Tracer, Genji, Zen, and Lucio. Winston calls a target and isolates them with his bubble. D.Va unleashes her rockets while covering for Winston if needed with her Defense Matrix. Genji and Tracer collapse on the target alongside them, with Lucio providing speed boost and Zen providing extra damage with a Discord Orb.
Switching the Winston out for a Wrecking Ball switches the main tank role’s job from isolation to disruption. While the rest of the team plays essentially the same way, Ball is able to bash enemies out of position and has higher burst potential at the expense of not having a proper shield.
“Pokey” Dives have also seen great use. Long-range DPS are used to provide poke damage from a distance. Ana can also be switched into a Pokey Dive as they’ll be far less vulnerable.
Pharmercy Dive has seen a great deal of use too, with the damage-boosted Pharah being able to rain down a lot of concentrated damage.
The hard counter to Dive is the GOATS comp. The huge HP pools, constant healing, and deathball style of play make it incredibly difficult to single out and pick off individual players. Alternatively, heroes with crowd control abilities such as McCree, Brigitte, and Roadhog can break the momentum of a dive and clutch out a fight.
With teams like the Chengdu Hunters running Dive extensively and many teams following suit in Stage 2, Dive’s resurgence could be in the works, and hopefully you’re now better equipped to tackle it. If you thought Dive was fast and hard-hitting, tune in next week as we tackle the Quad DPS.
I fell in love with Tomb Raider for the PS1 as a 4 year old and have gamed ever since. While I’ve meddled with the pro scenes of a couple games, I only really got invested with Overwatch for which I’ve been a pro player, coach and analyst in the tier 3 scene. Nowadays I mostly just play Overwatch, some Pdx Grand Strategies and R6 Siege but my favourite video game will forever be Star Wars Republic Commando. RIP Sev, you’ll always be remembered.
Disclosure: I’ve been a tournament admin and writer for The NUEL. While I am unlikely to cover the UK collegiate scene I still believe it important to disclose.