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Pokéwatch: Prepare your defenses


In my last two blogs, we looked at the Offense characters in Overwatch and determined which Pokémon would best fit them, based on their abilities and personality in their own game.  Now that the Offense team is done, it's time to start taking a look at the Defensive players. 

 Since we're looking at three characters per day, today we'll go in depth on Bastion, Hanzo, and Junkrat.



Bastion's place in Overwatch is uneasy; his model of robot is what tried to wipe out humanity years ago, necessitating the Overwatch program in the first place.  Many of the other members of the team express misgivings about working with it.  Many players express misgivings about playing against one, as Bastion has a tendency to shred inexperienced teams.  Bastion's main purpose is area denial, and it's good at its job.  Its main form of attack is to set up overlooking a control point or along the path of an escort target and transform into a heavy duty gatling gun, capable of dishing out tremendous damage wherever the barrel is pointed.  In between enemy charges, Bastion can even heal itself using the self repair ability.  The tradeoff for this is that while in this turret form, Bastion is immobile and must rely on its team for blocking and other support.  

Lead Pokémon: Genesect (#649)


Type: Bug/Steel

Reason: Genesect is a biotech experiment; in Pokémon Black and White it was augmented by Team Plasma, who attached an enormous cannon to its back capable of shooting blasts of elemental energy.  Visually, it's similar to Bastion in its Recon mode, since it must carry the gatling gun's barrel around with it even when it's not in use.  Genesect can make use of different hold items to change its signature move, Techno Blast, into one of five different elemental attacks, which gives it a lot of different options on the battlefield.  Like Bastion, this diversity comes with a tradeoff, however, as the Drive items it holds mean it can't use another hold item, and they can't be changed midway through a battle.

Support Pokémon:  Pidgey (#016)

Type: Normal/Flying

Reason: Bastion is the one of last of his kind, the E54 model sentry bots mostly having been destroyed as the frontline warriors of the Omnic Crisis.  The playable Bastion has given up its warlike ways, but will still heed a call to action when Overwatch has need of its abilities.  This Bastion unit seems to have a fair amount of curiosity about biological life, and it seems to have made a friendship of sorts with a small bird.  On Bastion's "Overgrown" skin, the bird has made a nest, and several of its emotes and victory poses feature the bird in some way.  There aren't too many smaller birds than Pidgey, the original winged rat from Pokémon Red, Blue, and Yellow.

Finisher: Meloetta (#648)


Type: Normal/Psychic (Aria form) Normal/Fighting (Pirouette form)

Reason: Bastion makes use of multiple configurations to increase its versatility on the battlefield, and the same is true of Meloetta.  This Pokémon can make use of its signature move, Relic Song, to shift its secondary type from Psychic to Fighting and back again if desired.  This move also takes advantage of Meloetta's unchanging Normal type, and is the only move which can both do damage and also put a target to sleep.



Bastion's team includes two legendaries, but its fondness for that little bird means it'll be facing an uphill battle no matter who it goes up against.  The Genesect will most likely be equipped with the Shock drive, so Techno Blast will deal Electric type damage.  Genesect will have to be careful of Fire type moves since it takes quadruple damage from those, but its typing leaves it with no other weaknesses.  Pidgey's Flying type cancels out Normal's Fighting type vulnerability, but leaves it vulnerable to Electric, Ice, and Rock attacks.  It's one of the weakest Pokémon around, so even normally effective moves have a good chance of taking it out in one hit.  Bastion's Meloetta, on the other hand, will have a way of shifting its vulnerabilities and strengths based on the situation, and should be able to perform well regardless of what the opponent attacks with.



Hanzo is Genji's brother, the scion of the Shimada clan, and may be a dragon walking the earth in human form... it's unclear right now.  What we do know is that he's a world-class archer, combining high tech arrowheads with the accuracy of his bow and arrows to make himself a formidable threat to any opposition he can draw a bead on.  He also seems to have some mystical powers, as his ultimate ability sends a pair of extremely powerful spirit dragons charging through the enemy team.  Much like his brother, if you hear him shout “Ryuu ga waga teki wo kurau!” (Dragon, consume my enemies), you'd better pay attention and hope he's on your side.

Lead Pokémon: Gyarados (#130)


Type: Water/Flying (normal) Water/Dark (Mega Evolution)

Reason: Gyarados is perhaps one of the most Japanese looking Pokémon around, its design based in part on traditional carp kites, or Koinobori.  Hanzo's spirit dragons are both blue and bear a strong resemblance to the top two Pokémon in his team.

Support Pokémon:  Dragonair (#148)

Type: Dragon

Reason: In the very first Pokémon game, Dragonair and its predecessor Dratini were the only true Dragon types available, since it gains the Flying type when it evolves into Dragonite.  Once again, Hanzo has made a choice based on aesthetics, as Dragonair reminds him of his other blue spirit dragon.

Finisher: Zekrom (#644)

Type: Dragon/Electric

Reason: While Hanzo's spirit dragons appear to be tied in some way to his exposed dragon tattoos, it's easier to miss the thundercloud printed on his robe on his other side.  Choosing Zekrom as his closer combines his love of Dragons with his apparent interest in lightning bolts.



Despite a lack of diversity, Hanzo's team should be tough to overcome.  Gyarados gained the ability to Mega evolve in generation 6, changing its secondary type from Flying to Dark and reducing the damage it would normally take from Electric attacks by half.  Hanzo could also bait the opponent into using an Electric attack on Gyarados, using this as an opportunity to switch in Zekrom, which has a 4x resistance to Electric attacks.  Dragonair would appear to be the weak link in the team, but Hanzo can take advantage of the fact that it's not evolved to its final form by making it hold the Eviolite, which will increase both of its defensive stats by 50%.  Unsurprisingly, Hanzo's team will have to watch out for Fairy types, a hard counter to Dragons. 



Junkrat is the mad bomber of Overwatch, a not-necessarily-reformed criminal who specializes in explosives and area denial.  His homemade, jury-rigged explosives are apparently made out of discarded car parts, and he can also make use of a jagged bear trap to stop an enemy in place for a few seconds, making them easy pickings for a friendly sniper or just a face full of bombs.  His ultimate, Rip-Tire, is a remote controlled bomb with massive power and area of effect, useful for stopping an enemy push or just putting the fear of God into the opposition for a few seconds.

Lead Pokémon: Raticate (#020)


Type: Normal

Reason: Raticate is the evolution of one of the earliest Pokémon most players will come across, and as such, it's easy to dismiss.  Despite its appearance, however, trainers who level up Raticate may learn that it has some particularly nasty tricks up its sleeve.  It's one of the few Pokémon that can learn Super Fang, which takes an opponent down to half their remaining hit points regardless of defenses or type.  It can also make good use of Endeavor, which reduces the opponent's life total to whatever Raticate is currently sitting at.  As a normal type, it can also learn lots of different elemental attacks and is immune to Ghost type moves, though it will need to avoid Fighting type attacks.  Rattatas are everywhere, and there's no doubt that more than one freshly caught Raticate has been given the nickname "Junkrat" by a novice Pokémon trainer.

Support Pokémon:  Mega Mawile (#303)

Type: Steel/Fairy

Reason: Mawile is a living Steel trap, the sweet face on one side giving no indication of the existential horror mouth coming out the back of its head.  Junkrat's steel traps don't do a lot of damage on their own, but they can set up a lot of damage by removing an opponent's ability to evade.  While less subtle, Mawile's Mega Evolution gives it the Huge Power ability, doubling its attack damage.

Finisher: Donphan (#232)


Type: Ground

Reason: Junkrat's ultimate, seen above, makes use of a discarded truck tire fitted with spikes and (presumably) enough C-4 to blow a hole in the moon.  Donphan resembles an elephant, but can make use of the thick, leathery hide on its trunk and back to roll up into a tire shape and increase its speed over smooth terrain.  It can also make good use of Rollout, a Rock-type move that deals increasing damage for five turns but leaves the user unable to choose another move.  Preceding Rollout with Defense Curl doubles this attack's damage at the outset and also provides a small defensive boost.


Analysis: Much like their owner, Junkrat's team is unconventional, relying on combat tricks and unpredictability to get the job done.  His Raticate doesn't have great stats, but can make use of a Focus Sash to make sure it gets at least one good hit in.  Combined with Endeavor, this virtually guarantees Raticate will take out whatever creature it faces; it's sort of like how Junkrat drops several live grenades when he dies, which can get him revenge on a careless opponent.  His Mawile's Steel type nullifies the Fairy weakness to Poison and Steel attacks, but it will still have to watch out for Fire and Ground moves.  Donphan takes double damage from the common Water, Ice and Grass type moves, but its Ground type gives it a wide array of coverages.  Using Rollout ensures that it won't have to switch out if the opponent brings out a Flying type, either.


That's all for today.  We'll finish up the Defense team tomorrow with Mei, Torbjörn, and Widowmaker.  Once Defense is done, they'll start their own battle, and the winners there will take on the winners from yesterday's Offense batle.


As always, thanks to Pokestadium, where I found the Pokémon sprites, and also to Pokecharms for their trainer card macro.  And a big thanks to Curvedlines, who posted all the sprite sprays for the Overwatch heroes.

Finally, this last image didn't quite fit in with my team for Hanzo, but I thought it was too cool not to share.  Check out ElStrawFedora on DeviantArt for more like this.

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About Kevin McCluskyone of us since 5:34 AM on 02.16.2007

I'm a longtime member of Destructoid, and you may have known me in a prior life as Qalamari.
In other words, hi. I've been here a long time. There's a good chance I'm older than you.

I write freelance articles for other publications, so you might see my name elsewhere occasionally.
Disclosure: I wrote a paid testimonial for the Speedify VPN service in April 2017.

Here are some things I like.

May want to stay out of the old stuff. I really didn't know what I was doing when I started here.

Like most other Dtoiders I am male, 15 to 30 something, introverted to the point of social ineptitude, and grew up obsessing over videogames, somewhat to the chagrin of my parents. I am a moderately slavering Nintendo fan because-- let's be fair... they were easily the biggest influence in my formative years. Because of this, it is my belief that Smash Bros. was created specifically for me. The fact that the rest of you may enjoy it is merely coincidence.

I was interviewed, once.

I used to be the Cblog Recapper for Mondays. It was a good run.

Beyamor's avatar fathered mine's love child at PAX East. It's ok though, 'cuz he gave me a picture of a Kirby as child support. Cheap bastard...

I inspired a song. (Thanks, Alphadeus!)

You can reach me on twitter @Qalamari, and that's my handle pretty much everywhere. You can also reach me at [email protected].
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