While Genji and Hanzo have been longtime mascots for Overwatch regarding the ninja characters, Overwatch 2 has introduced players to a new ninja in the form of the Shimada brothers’ childhood friend, Kiriko.
As of now, Kiriko is considered one of the most powerful support heroes in the game, but she is pretty tricky to master. If players aren’t careful, they can find themselves pretty easily picked off if they don’t know how to use her.
In the Overwatch lore, Kiriko’s mother was the same ninja that trained the Shimada brothers Genji and Hanzo, and this resulted in Kiriko getting trained alongside them; this is also made apparent whenever Kiriko interacts with a Shimada whenever she gets teamed up with them during a match.
Kiriko’s mother may have been a skilled warrior. Still, Kiriko also had a close relationship with her grandma, who nurtured her healing abilities, teaching Kiriko how to harness the powers of the Kitsune/Fox Spirit (compared to the Shimadas, who were adept with dragons).
Though Hanzo and Genji tend to be old-school ninjas when it comes to characterizations, Kiriko is more of a modern incarnation, with her leading a new group of new-age fighters. She also has that punk aesthetic that widens the gap between her and the Shimada bros.
Kiriko was introduced during the launch of Overwatch 2, and though it’s taken a couple of seasons, she has steadily climbed the ranks to be one of the game’s most effective support heroes. Not only does she heal pretty well, but her kunai ability can also deal great damage—making her a tough adversary when a high-skill player uses her.
The kit includes the following:
Healing Ofuda – Kiriko’s primary fire, which heals targeted allies.
Kunai – Kiriko’s secondary fire deals critical damage; it is good for getting headshots on enemies.
Swift Step – Kiriko can directly teleport beside an ally.
Protection Suzu – Like Bapitiste’s Immortality Field, Kiriko throws a protective charm that grants temporary invulnerability to allies. This can stop burst ultimates and cleanse teammates from negative effects.
Her ultimate, Kitsune Rush, has Kiriko summoning the fox spirit, providing a path that will increase speed and cooldowns for allies for a limited time. It’s considered one of the game’s most powerful ultimates.
Like with every hero, the secret to mastering them always relies on how effectively you use their abilities. Kiriko’s kit makes her one of the most mobile support characters in the game, and it’s best to use that to your advantage.
Know How the Suzu Works
Regarding healing with Kiriko, aim isn’t an issue since her suzu automatically attaches to a player and starts to heal from that point. Without a player to heal, the suzu just flies forward and heals whatever comes to their path.
Some players don’t realize that the suzu changes color depending on who you’re healing. If the suzu has a target, it glows yellow. If the suzu is just flying a straight path, it glows blue.
Think Ahead of Where Your Team Will Be
Kiriko’s teleport ability is pretty nifty when healing faraway teammates or escaping a tricky situation. Still, the cooldown is pretty long, so you must be careful whenever you use it. It’s best to think ahead of where your teammates want to be during a fight rather than just teleporting beside them willy-nilly.
Sure, you could Swift-Step to save a teammate, but if you fail, you could end up in the same crosshairs, and you won’t be able to escape immediately.
One Shot, One Kill
While Kiriko’s kunai ability is effective, it’s not suggested that you chip away at enemies with them. At best, they should be used to provide final critical blows to enemies already on low health.
Some pros suggest that you aim your kunai at choke points, hoping to catch something. Since their projectile speed is slow, they don’t use faraway targets well, but they can be deadly nearby.
Properly Aim Your Kitsune Rush
There are good ultimates, and Kiriko’s Kitsune Rush, which some people say is the most powerful ultimate in the game. Sure, on the surface, it only makes your team faster, but that also increases their fire rate. This means they can deal more damage in a shorter amount of time.
When aiming for Kiriko’s ultimate, it’s always best to ensure the enemy team is in its direct path. Aim it too close, though; the enemy team can easily run forward to avoid its effects. You want to cast it in a distance where your team can easily enter it, and the enemies are just in their line of fire.