What is high ground?
High ground is an area of the map that is elevated above other areas of the map. Almost all the maps in the game have some form of high ground around the objective and is an important part of overwatch map design.
You hear people saying all the time to ?use high ground,? but a lot of people don?t know the benefits of high ground or why they should use it. Here I will explain the features of high ground.
First off I will say that not all heroes will receive all these benefits from high ground just from the nature of there kits. Reinhardt for example isn?t designed to use high ground and in a lot of situations might even want to avoid it.
Better vision of the area
This is a small thing but it?s quite important, especially if your playing in an organised group.
When you are on high ground you have a great view of the point and a lot of surrounding area.
When on high ground you can easily see where the enemy are coming from and quickly gather any information about there team. With this information you get a good idea of what the enemy are going to do this fight. If you are shot calling, trhen this information can really help you on what to tell your team. Helping in getting a win condition to beat the enemy from the extra information you can gather from high ground.
Low ground will have many objects blocking your way so you won?t have good vision compared to high ground.
High ground is safer for a couple of reasons and one of them is the fact that you are incontestable by a large amount of heroes as not all heroes have vertical mobility. This instantly makes it a safe position.
Also you can use high ground as cover against people on low ground. Here?s a slightly scuffed image explaining this:
How high ground can be used as cover?https://imgur.com/gallery/iVLhdsE
If you crouch, away from the edge of the high ground then people on the low ground won?t be able to see you. This means you can use high ground as vertical cover.
However there are examples where high ground can be less safe. Let?s say your playing soldier on the high ground on numbani defense and your team is contesting the choke on the other high ground. This is good high ground to use and gives you a great view on the point.
But if the enemy have a Winston then you are in a risky position as you are way from your team and an ideal target for a monkey. You are completely isolated. In this situation when you see the enemy have a Winston or some other hero that can contest high ground, it might be a smarter move to give up the high ground and play nearer the safety of your team.
While on high ground you not only can use it as cover but it can also help you in fights in other ways.
Lots of people can find it uncomfortable to aim at targets above them as it is arguably harder to do. This means that you could have an advantage in fight when on high ground as people may struggle to react and then shoot you (more at lower ranks).
Also everyone on the low ground will be a sitting duck. If someone is not in cover, then you will have a clear view of there whole hitbox, presenting you with an easy target to shoot at.
High ground also provides you with an alternate angle from your team. If the enemy is focussing on the main part of your team (which they probably are for the majority of time), then you are providing a cross fire and taking some of the enemy?s attention. As you can sneak in damage from above. This is really effective if the enemy are playing a ground based comp as they will have no way to deal with you and you will get damage onto there team for free, until they are forced to reposition or eventually die.
As a final note, almost all heroes can benefit from high ground because of how safe it is most of the time. However short range heroes like Reinhardt will benefit from it less as they won?t be able to do what they want to do.
Also if you play a hero that has vertical mobility, and the enemy is using high ground, a lot of the time you need to get up there and contest it. Especially if you are playing a dive tank or someone with good dueling capabilities like genji. If your being contested while on high ground, you might as well not be there so always contest if you can.
Thanks for reading this, I hoped it?s helped in some way.