Overwatch - How to Play Reinhardt

Overwatch - How to Play Reinhardt

Overwatch's main tank steps out into the battlefield. Here's the best strategies for Reinhardt.

Reinhardt is the vanilla Tank of Overwatch. He's a huge, hulking armored man with a big glowing shield who plants himself in front of the rest of the team to soak up damage. And when he needs to deal damage, Reinhardt's massive hammer is punishing.

If you were instead looking for guides on any other areas of the game, then head over to our Overwatch guides walkthrough hub, featuring additional character strategy articles, as well as general tips and tricks for playing the game.

Reinhardt Move List

Primary: Rocket Hammer

Reinhardt's Rocket Hammer is the best melee weapon in the game. It's actually behind Genji's Dragonstrike in damage, and that's an Ultimate. The Hammer has a huge arc to it and is actually longer range than other melee attacks. Use it in enclosed spaces and choke points to ruin the opposing team's day. Clip Size: What? Hammers don't have clips.

Barrier Field

Reinhardt's big ability is his massive glowing shield. When he uses it, the camera switches to a third-person viewpoint, allowing players to position the shield in the right place. The Barrier Field actually has health, 2000 HP to be exact, so you have to watch it. If it gets destroyed, you have a 5 second cooldown where you can't use it. Your best bet is to drop the field occasionally: it regenerates 225 HP per second when it's not being used.

Use Barrier Field to push into a control point, escort the payload, or to bust through choke points.

Barrier Field does not block Winston and Symmetra's channeled primary weapons, Reinhardt's Fire Strike, and melee attacks. The latter might be odd, but anyone in melee range should be taken care of by your team or your Hammer.


Reinhardt charges ahead, grabbing the first enemy he comes in contact with. If he hits a wall, that enemy becomes pinned, which deals a ton of damage. As such, you want to use this when you have an enemy in your sights, but there's also something behind them. The charge's first hit only does melee damage, it's the pin that really matters. Outside of the first target, any other enemies hit by the charge will take melee damage and be knocked back. This is great for clearing choke points.

You can also Charge to carry Reinhardt into a fight, as he's a rather slow character otherwise. If you use it for this purpose, remember the move has a long 10 second cooldown.

It's worth noting that Charge travels through enemy shields and barriers, so it can be used to hit other tanks like Winston and Zarya.

Fire Strike

Reinhardt's only projectile attack whips his Rocket Hammer is an arc, throwing a wave of fire that hits everything in its path. Like Charge, Fire Strike travels through shield and barriers; unlike Charge, Fire Strike's damage is consistent for every target hit. This is Reinhardt's only ranged weapon and his only way to attack targets that are elevated far above the Tank.

Fire Strike's cooldown is only 6 seconds, so honestly you should be throwing these out all the time when you're not tanking damage. One good combo here is to use Barrier Field to approach a Bastion Sentry and take them out with a Fire Strike and Charge.

Reinhardt's Ultimate: Earthshatter

Reinhardt's Ultimate slams the ground in front of him in a cone, dealing melee damage to every enemy in range and stunning them for a few seconds. Use Earthshatter in tandem with other heroes abilities: McCree's Deadeye, Mei's Blizzard, Pharah's Barrage, and D.Va's Self-Destruct all benefit from a group of stunned foes. If you're alone, pick the highest priority target in your group of stunned enemies and hit them with a Fire Strike/Charge combo.

Unlike Fire Strike and Charge, Earthshatter is stopped by barriers and shields. Don't waste it.

How to Play Reinhardt

Reinhardt is the easiest Tank to understand. Use the Barrier Field to push forward on objectives and choke points. Charge gets Reinhardt into combat, punishes lone targets, and removes tanks from their teams. Fire Strike gives Reinhardt a strong ranged weapon against other tanks or Bastion Sentries.

Slow and steady is the name of the game here. Soak up damage for your team and blocking your mid-range Offense heroes and giving them a chance to do their job. Reinhardt and McCree are a solid combo, with Reinhardt blocking McCree and giving the cowboy time to drop foes with Peacekeeper.

You're not a very mobile tank though, so chasing lone enemies isn't the best way forward. Stay with your team.

Who Reinhardt Plays Well Against

Soldier 76: There's not a ton Soldier 76 can do to Reinhardt. Both have fairly low vertical mobility and Soldier 76 doesn't put out enough damage to stress Barrier Field. Reinhardt simply has to push forward and Captain Overwatch is a dead man.

Bastion/Torbjorn: Turret characters are shut down with Reinhardt on the field. The combination of Barrier Field/Charge/Fire Strike means Reinhardt is built to stop turret fire and punish their heroes. The trick here is to not approach from too far away, as Bastion's Sentry mode can still break your shield with some help.

Who to Watch Out For When Playing as Reinhardt

Pharah: She flies, which can put her above Reinhardt's shield, where she can hurt you from above. The only answer Reinhardt has to Pharah is Fire Strike and it's hard to tag a moving target with that ability.

McCree: Fan the Hammer can absolutely take down the shield is a few hits and Flashbang will stop you in your tracks. If you see a McCree, try to hit them with Charge, since their movement speed is slow.

Junkrat: Junkrat's Frag Launcher can send grenades over your shield and if he targets Barrier Field directly, he's got the damage to bring it down. Bad times ahead.

Zenyatta: The trick here is the support hero can hit Reinhardt with Discord Orb, increasing the damage Reinhardt takes from other heroes. That sets you up for being punished by other tanks or the characters above.

Reinhardt might be one of the toughest heroes in Overwatch, but you've always got to know which characters to be on the lookout for while playing as him.

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Mike Williams

Reviews Editor

M.H. Williams is new to the journalism game, but he's been a gamer since the NES first graced American shores. Third-person action-adventure games are his personal poison: Uncharted, Infamous, and Assassin's Creed just to name a few. If you see him around a convention, he's not hard to spot: Black guy, glasses, and a tie.

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