Ranking The Overwatch Halloween Skins
It's that time of year again. We've reached October, which means Overwatch's Halloween celebration is in full swing. The Terror event, which just went live today, has its share of special treats, such as the wave-based horde mode Junkenstein's Revenge, alongside new Halloween-themed skins, emotes, and voice lines. Every year, Blizzard raises the bar with its Halloween designs, making it a true contender for the best event skins. While the first year capitalized on its Junkenstein theme of basic (but super cool) Halloween fare, subsequent years have thrown us some nice surprises, from the far out Totally '80s Zarya to the Cthulhu-inspired cultist Zenyatta. As the skins are the main attraction, we decided to rank all of them from worst to best. After much deliberation and compromise, here's what we came up with as a staff for our favorite and not-so favorites.
Bastion - Tombstone
Part of this might be our disdain for Bastion mains, but this skin also isn't that great. The color scheme and "RIP" text is true to the holiday, but it's not something you'll worry about if the loot box gods don't bestow it upon you.
Mei - Pumpkin
It seems that Blizzard just can't figure out what to do with Mei as far as Halloween skins are concerned. Her pumpkin get-up is about as uninspired as it gets, especially compared to Hammond and Reaper's take on incorporating Jack-O-Lanterns into their costumes. The color scheme is too close her Persimmon skin. This is one skin we'd gladly smash in the spirit of Halloween mischief.
Tracer - Will-O'-Wisp
It was great to see Tracer finally get a Halloween skin, but this one isn't particularly impressive. It looks more like something a fan could quickly put together in Photoshop. We just think the mascot of the franchise deserved better. Tracer has a lot of personality and pizazz, and this just falls flat in matching it.
Sombra - Fantasma
Sombra already has some fantastic skins for this holiday. Bride and Demon Hunter have respectable places on this list after all, which is why we can’t imagine why Blizzard took the time to give her this extremely generic getup. The colors mix well together and her overall outfit is slick, but the only thing that screams Halloween is her glowing eyes. Yawn.
Baptiste - Vampire
After Symmetra and Reaper, did we really need another vampire skin? And did it really need to look so generic? Thumbs down. Let's just say if they all wore their vampire digs at a costume party together, Baptiste would feel the embarrassment and shame. He'd totally be seen as the friend who clearly didn't want to put in the effort.
Widowmaker - Spider
Another skin that crosses an item off the Typical Spooky Halloween Things checklist; this one is disappointing for how little it changes up Widowmaker's design. Not only does it use the same color scheme, but it's extremely safe and boring. Thankfully, it's not a legendary, but admit it, out of all the new skins announced this year, it's definitely your least favorite.
Hanzo - Dai-Tengu
As horrifying as Blizzard tries to make Hanzo outside of his storm arrows, his Halloween skins just never really hit the mark. They’re okay, but not anything super impressive. This Tengu yokai one is a cool idea, it just looks pretty bland. It’s like that friend who throws something together with good intentions, but isn’t gunning for an award at the end of the night.
Torbjorn - Viking
This skin seems good in theory, but it's not exactly a skin that screams Halloween, nor is it a costume your friends would be jealous of. We think Blizzard can get a bit more creative on how to accessorize Torbjorn and his turret for the occasion. Hopefully, his rework impresses more than this one.
Mei - Jiangshi
Mei's other Halloween skin is...different, but it's a far cry from her more memorable threads (see PajaMei and Mei-rry). While the color scheme certainly pops and the Chinese vampire is an interesting idea, it just doesn't hold a candle to the fierce Halloween competition. Maybe Mei would have been better suited as a devil. She may be all about ice, but we've all felt the Mei burn as she's waved before headshotting us with an icicle...
Reinhardt - Coldhardt
The design for this skin is actually pretty cool, but it could also pass for a winter skin. Coldhardt isn't exactly the creepy Halloween skin you've been waiting for. There are much better ways to make a ghost with armor, as can be seen by Pharah's newest skin for the event. Also, why not just get it over with and make Reinhardt wear a Thor costume? He has the giant freakin' hammer already.
Pharah - Possessed
Another example of an early skin that just didn't wow. It was acceptable, but something we very rarely equipped. That being said, the purple smoke rising out of her was a nice touch.
Junkrat - Inferno
Junkrat is a fiery type of guy so we get the sentiment, but how can any costume top his Dr. Junkenstein one? This feels like a costume the pyromaniac would just throw together last-minute. He'd then quickly realize he should have just worn what he did last year because everyone will be asking him why he didn't anyway.
Hanzo - Demon
Hanzo's demon skin is striking, especially for the detail on his clothes and tattoos, but this isn't exactly a unique skin. It merely gets the job done - nothing more, nothing less.
Ashe - Warlock
This isn't exactly what we were expecting for an Ashe Halloween skin, but the design is pretty cool, especially the detail on her gun. Ashe looks like the badass we know her to be, but she also looks appropriately more sinister. And the nod to World of Warcraft is a nice touch.
Genji - Karasu-Tengu
His Halloween costume? Cyborg ninja, but in this case Genji got a little more festive to celebrate the holiday of horrors. This isn’t a bad skin. In fact, it’s actually very colorful and cool-looking, but it just doesn’t capture the holiday’s frights the way the others do.
Soldier 76 - Immortal
As a tribute to one of the greatest music videos of all time, this skin is merely okay. I mean, this is most likely what a dad would think would be cool to wear to a Halloween party, so I guess it works in that regard.
Symmetra - Vampire
There was no way we weren't getting a vampire skin, and this one is about as exciting as a standard vampire uniform can get.
Widowmaker - Scorpion
Widow's other Halloween skin isn't exactly great, so we're happy Blizzard at least tried to rectify that by putting something much better together. The gold color scheme really makes this skin pop, but her new helmet – which has the venomous stinger covering her hair – is what makes the look complete.
Ana - Ghoul
She's everyone's favorite grandma, and part of what makes this skin a delight is thinking of the often serious and mission-focused Ana getting into the holiday spirit. Pair it with her candy emote and she becomes the adorable old lady we know she really is deep down.
McCree - Undead
With his pistol skills, it's hard to think many people could get the jump on McCree, but in this case even if they did, he'd just rise from the dead. The skeleton bandana and DAMF belt are a nice touch.
Sombra - Demon Hunter
Yes, this skin was previously a Blizzcon exclusive and not associated with the Halloween event, but Blizzard changed that this year. In week three, it's your reward for completing the weekly challenge, so we're including it. After all, it's too cool of a skin not to. When this skin first debuted, all kinds of Assassin's Creed comparisons came out due to her hood and armor set, but her glowing eyes say something more sinister is within her. It's one of those skins you're happy you can finally own.
Reaper - Dracula
As we noted earlier, we weren't escaping vampire skins, and we now have three! Of course, Reaper needed to one-up Symmetra and Mei by turning himself into The Count. The black and red trenchcoat alongside his guns just make him look out for blood.
Lucio - Gorgon
A match made in Halloween heaven! Lucio was already memorizing, but turning his dreadlocks into snakes was a marvelous idea. Giving Medusa a run for her money, his new glowing green eyes really do stop you in your tracks. It's one of those skins that just is a good fit for the character's design, earning a solid spot on our list.
Sigma - Flying Dutchman
The creativity in this skin alone speaks volumes. Ghost pirates are scary on their own, but sea urchins as Sigma’s weapon of choice? Masterful. There’s a cartoony vibe to this one that we like, right down to the little details in his outfit, such as the treasure-chest-like shoulder pads. Also, the turquoise and red go together wonderfully, giving his attire the pop it needs. And what an impressive beard to boot!
Ana - Corsair
She already has the eye patch, so what could be more fitting than Ana donning a pirate costume? Blizzard didn't phone it in, either. Her attire would make any pirate envious, complete with a parrot and sniper rifle that also doubles as a cutlass.
Zarya - Totally '80s
Halloween isn't just about frights. It's also about just having fun with your costume. Zarya's skin represents our love affair with the '80s, from the big hair to oversized leg warmers. Her headband, "Let's Get Physical" shirt, and leopard-print tights just add all the right details to this blast-from-the-past getup.
Orisa - Demon
Orisa always looks so innocent, but not with this skin! Taling a walk on the dark side, Orisa becomes a demon, and it's a sight to behold. She was already a hulking presence, but something about this skin makes her look even bigger and deadlier. Quick! Make her play with her puppy so you can remember her true nature.
McCree - Van Helsing
McCree seems as if he likes to play hero, so we're not surprised to see him as the fictional vampire hunter. After all, Reaper needs an archnemesis as Dracula, and what better way to add to the feud of who's the better attack hero than giving them opposing roles? Blizzard's recreation of Van Helsing's trademark black hat on McCree suits him well.
Hammond - Pumpkin
A pumpkin seems like a good substitute for a hamster ball, but what's great about this skin is how it takes such a cute character and makes him something truly terrifying. The Jack-O-Lantern is only one element to his terror - just look at those eyes and tell me that Hammond doesn't just feel bigger and more terrifying than he's ever been before.
Zenyatta - Skullyatta
Here's a good example of taking something typical - a skeleton - and putting a new spin on it. Skullyatta very much fits the character, while mixing in some key skeleton features. The ribcage bones and exposed brain help sell the look, but Zenyatta is also wearing his typical monk attire. As an omnic on the path to enlightenment, the darkness here helps sell the sinister part of Halloween.
Brigette - Stone
It’s hard to really imagine Brigette as anything but kind and adorable, but this costume lets her play a different role. As a creepy gargoyle with glowing eyes and illuminated cracks to her structure, she stands tall as not one to mess with. In her words, “Try me!” It’s the right amount of spook, while also keeping her badassery intact.
Sombra - Bride
Junkenstein is out of control, so it's not surprising that he'd make a bride for himself. What is the surprise is that it's Sombra and she pulls off the look so damn well. The skin's aesthetic is cool, the hair is fantastic, and what it adds to the Junkenstein story only makes it that much better. Let's see her try to hack her way to a better skin than this.
Winston - Werewolf
Winston is another character that we’ve waited a long time to get the Halloween costume treatment, and we couldn’t think of a more fitting one than transforming him into a werewolf. Look, he had the fur and hair down, and he’s probably the smartest, nicest werewolf you’ll ever meet. The red-and-black plaid vest is a nice touch. Now just give him all the candy with peanut butter!
Doomfist - Swamp Monster
The Halloween skins have transformed characters into plenty of iconic monsters, but Swamp Monster Doomfist looks like something straight out the Creature from the Black Lagoon. He represents the monster he apes wonderfully, with great detail and a vibrant color palette. Doomfist's speed and surprise element is also a great fit for this monster.
Pharah - Enchanted
Pharah's previous skin might have been a bit disappointing, but this headless horseman re-creation more than makes up for it. The detailed armor has gold and turquoise running through it, making it stand out. We wonder if the ability to go headless means headshots are now out of the question.
D․Va - Shin-Ryeong
It finally happened! After years of asking, D.Va finally got her own Halloween skin, and it was worth the wait. What’s admirable is that Blizzard didn’t just give her a generic makeover for the holiday; instead, it thought outside the box and gave her something legendary, representing the nine-tailed fox, best known as Kumiho in Korean tales. After all, her mech is a freakin’ haunted shrine! The outfit, fingernails, and hair are all on point to create a delightfully spooky look.
Ana - Pharoah
There's something about Ana because she has yet to have a bad Halloween skin. She is one classy mummy. With a gorgeous neckpiece and bandages that flow like locks of hair, Ana isn't content with just donning the bare minimum for her costume (look at that asp on her arm!). It feels like Ana makes it her own, right down to her rifle being wrapped in bandages as well. Due to her efforts, Ana is invited to every Halloween party going forward.
Soldier 76 - Slasher
Solider 76's Immortal skin left a lot to be desired, but this new one more than compensates for it. Channeling his inner Jason with some style, this homage to the Friday the 13th films, features a new take on his leather jacket with slashes across his shirt and body. This isn't what you'd except for our resident dad, but that's part of what makes Halloween so fun. Plus, he's got the right disheveled hair to sell the character.
Reaper - Pumpkin
The long-running joke about Reaper is that he tries too hard to be an edgelord, but his pumpkin skin brings some much-needed levity to the character. Maybe he doesn't take himself so seriously, and maybe he's not so predictable. Either way, it's a fun skin and gunning down enemies with a giant pumpkin head never gets old.
Moira - Banshee
So far, Moira hasn't had the best event skins, and her David Bowie look is getting overplayed. Her Banshee skin is by far the best one yet, and it's fitting considering it involves Irish Mythology. She truly looks like something horrific with her draping hair and glowing eyes. Throw in her fade ability and she was already on the cusp of being supernatural, making this a perfect match.
Roadhog - Junkenstein's Monster
The way Blizzard builds characters around Junkenstein just keeps getting better. Every mad scientist needs a creation, and Roadhog masquerading as the popular fiend is about as good as it gets. Just like the monster, there's something that's inherently lovable about the hog. The attire hits all the Frankenstein notes, while incorporating Roadhog's key features such as his pig nose and his mask with "hogdrogen" inhalers.
Echo - Ragdoll
Now, this is how you take a character’s unique look into account and morph it in a satisfying (and horrific) way! For 2020, this was no doubt the best of the new bunch, making this creepy version of Echo look straight out of a killer doll film or Silent Hill game. The holiday is about pulling off the perfect frights, and we think Echo pretty much has that down. Nobody wants to turn around to find this masterful piece of patchwork staring right back at them.
Junkrat - Dr. Junkenstein
Dr. Jamison Junkenstein is the catalyst for the fun Junkenstein's Revenge mode, earning him major points. However, it's Junkrat's fascination with explosives and wild hair that makes him the perfect fit for a mad scientist. After all, nothing pleases him more than creating chaos and destruction. The result is a fantastic-looking skin, complete with a fun Halloween story involving various Overwatch characters on the side of good and evil.
Symmetra - Dragon
Now this skin is much better and more creative than her vampire skin. Symmetra's second Halloween skin really upped the ante. As an ally to Witch Mercy, the dragonic summoner is as deadly as this skin is detailed. The overall look is something you weren't expecting, with a purple and gold color scheme and dragon horns to boot. The best skins surprise you and make you excited to hit the equip button, which is why this is so high on our list.
Zenyatta - Cultist
Speaking of cool skins you want to immediately equip, Zenyatta's cultist skin more than qualifies. Obviously a nod to H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu, it transforms the omnic into a scaly, squid-faced creature. Zenyatta's meditative pose gives a peaceful and serene feel that just begs for worship. It's also not a stretch to say that his search for spiritual enlightenment alongside his transcendence ability could spark some idolization and followers his way. But let's not dig too deep on whether or not Zen could cause chaos by having a cult form around him.
Mercy - Witch
No character dons the Halloween attire better than Mercy does as the Witch of the Wilds. Her staff - which is cleverly transformed into a broomstick with the skin - already brings the power to heal, boost powers, and fly, so it's not a stretch to think she got this magic from somewhere and there's some witchcraft involved. Offering the objects of people's desires "for a price," Witch Mercy plays her role well. With her spellbook and black hat, she certainly looks the part, but we're also happy Blizzard didn't just follow the generic witch look by putting her in all black or making her skin green; instead, Mercy was allowed to have her own style. Also, those witch boots!
Kristin Williams, Margaret Andrews, & Brian Shea contributed to this article.