Best Overwatch Settings For High FPS And Competitive Performance

Overwatch is an incredibly beautiful game. I mean, we’ve all seen the animated shorts. If you haven’t, you should check them out. The most impressive part about Overwatch is how well the graphis carry over into the actual game, from the trailers. They share the same artstyle in and out. While these graphics are going to tend to be less taxing on your PC than the more realistic graphics, you need to consider all of the variables.

Overwatch at first glance is not really a game at that you’d expect to be taxing on your system. However, you are going to quickly learn that the fast pace of Overwatch is going to cause a few different issues. There’s an incredible amount of variety in the different abilities in the game, and these abilities when you look at it from an outside perspective have a lot of detail to them. When those abilities are flying all over the screen, and you’re dodging in and out of them, you’re going to notice some discrepancies in your PC’s performance.

With that said, you’re going to want to take a look initially, at your video settings within Overwatch. You may have an incredible PC, or you may have a sub-par PC. Either way, adjusting your settings unique to your PC, and yourself, can make the world of difference in Overwatch.

From a purely competitive standpoint, you’re going to quickly notice that all of the pros, despite having monster PCs, are going to be running the game at all low settings. This is with good reason. In a competitive environment, there are already enough variables to have to worry about, especially in Overwatch. You shouldn’t be concerned with having the best possible settings ensuring that your PC isn’t going to take a poop in the heat of battle. Freezing is never fun; especially when that freeze, or stutter lost the match for your team.

Luckily for you though, we’ve put together a guide to squeeze the most out of your PC when considering competitive Overwatch, and the best possible settings for maximum performance.

Minimum PC Requirements For Overwatch

These are the bare minimum PC requirements for Overwatch per Blizzard. While these are going to allow you to run the game, they’re going to not really allow you to play the game. Those are two different things. Playing the game on 30 FPS versus playing the game on 144 fps is like flying on a jetliner thinking you’re going fast, and then hopping on an F-22 fighter jet at full speed. You’re probably going to end up passing out because the difference is so astronomical.

That said, though, if you’re not able to afford a better PC, at least you can play Overwatch. The game is fantastic, and you’re going to thoroughly enjoy it.

OS: Windows® 7 / Windows® 8 / Windows® 10 64-bit (latest Service Pack)
Processor: Intel® Core™ i3 or AMD Phenom™ X3 8650
Video: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 460, ATI Radeon™ HD 4850, or Intel® HD Graphics 4400
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Storage: 30 GB available hard drive space
Internet: Broadband internet connection
Resolution: 1024 x 768

Recommended PC Specs To Run Overwatch At 60 FPS

If you’re a competitive gamer, you’re likely going to have a fairly decent setup. If you don’t, follow the below guidelines to at least run the game at 60 FPS. This isn’t very expensive, but if you can afford more, we highly recommend taking that route. Performance in a competitive environment isn’t something you want to take lightly. Every bit counts, and they all add up to be a significant performance improvement.

For most gamers, competitive or not, you’re not going to know the difference between 60 FPS/Hz and 144 FPS/Hz. For that, I am both sorry and envious. I am envious because you have more money in your pockets than the likes of myself. However, I feel sorry because you don’t know how much truly different the experience is. That said, playing the game at 60 FPS/Hz is still going to feel normal to you. With normality, you’re going to bring in your competitive nature. Either way, you’re going to be happy playing Overwatch.

OS: Windows® 7 / Windows® 8 / Windows® 10 64-bit (latest Service Pack)
Processor: Intel® Core™ i5 or AMD Phenom™ II X3 or better
Video: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 660 or AMD Radeon™ HD 7950 or better
Memory: 6 GB RAM
Storage: 30 GB available hard drive space
Internet: Broadband internet connection
Resolution: 1024 x 768

Performance Optimized Overwatch Video Settings

At both the highest and lowest levels of Overwatch competitive gaming, performance and video settings are going to be paramount in your evolution. If you’re already at the higher level of play, and you’re looking to gain more of a competitive advantage to take you to that next level, you’re going to absolutely want to look at your settings. As far as you may know, you could be getting the best performance, but with a few slight adjustments, you could see an immediate 10-20% gain. These gains are going to directly affect your play, placebo or not.

An argument that a lot of people bring forth in the changing of settings, is the placebo effect. This basically means that nothing actually changed, you’re just performing better because you think it changed something. At the end of the day, though, does it really matter? If you’re performing better then the change was good. More often than not, you were just in a slump and needed a way to get yourself out of it. If it was a settings change that got you out of it, more power to you.

I personally like to eliminate all of the variables that I can control. That said, you’re going to want to start by figuring out the best possible video settings for Overwatch, and you. Typically, though, the below settings we have are going to be the best Overwatch settings. Try these out, and let us know what you think!

Video Setting OptionRecommended SettingPerformance Gain
Display ModeFullscreen0
Aspect Ratio16:90
Triple BufferingOff1%
Reduce BufferingOff1%
Display Performance StatsOn0
Limit FPSCustom - 3001-5%
Local Fog DetailLow1%
Dynamic ReflectionsOff1%
Shadow DetailOff4%
Model DetailLow3%
Effects DetailLow6%
Lighting QualityLow1%
Anti-Alias QualityLow - FXAA1.50%
Refraction QualityLow1%
Screenshot Quality1X Resolution0
Local ReflectionsOff0.50%
Ambient OcclusionsOff2.50%
Render Scale1000%
Texture QualityMedium4%
Texture Filtering QualityLow - 1X2.50%

Overwatch Optimized Settings For NVIDIA

Make sure you have the latest video card drivers, there are additional settings that you can tune within your NVIDIA control panel. A lot of these tunes are going to show significant performance gain for many users. For some people, though, you may not see much improvement so bear that in mind. Either way, it cannot hurt to try, right?

  1. Right click on the desktop and open Nvidia Control Panel
  2. Go to Manage 3D Settings
  3. Select the Program Settings tab and find Overwatch. If you can’t find the game, click Add and find the game executable. Running Overwatch can also fix this if the title is missing.
  4. Set Maximum Pre-rendered Frames to 1
  5. Set Multi-Display /Mixed GPU Acceleration to Single Display Performance Mode
  6. Set Power Management Mode to Prefer Maximum Performance
  7. Disable Vertical Sync
  8. Select and Enable Threaded Optimization
  9. Set Preferred Refresh Rate to the highest possible setting

Recommended 144hz Monitor And Settings For Overwatch

Overwatch is a game where a fantastic gaming monitor is going to do a lot of work for you in terms of performance, and playing at a higher level. Monitors have something on them called refresh rate. The higher the refresh rate is on your monitor, the faster it is going to come to fruition on your screen. You’ll notice that the majority of the Overwatch pro players, are playing on 144 Hz at the very least, with most of them on 240 Hz. This is incredibly important.

With how quickly Overwatch’s pace is, you’re going to want the game to be as smooth as possible. This is where the monitor and settings begins to synergize. Without 144 FPS, your 144 Hz monitor isn’t going to be able to run at its highest refresh rate, assuming you have one. Look at it this way: 1 FPS = 1 Hz. Most monitors are going to come at an industry standard 60 Hz, which would require you to have 60 FPS to use at full capacity.

If you don’t have a 144 Hz monitor, where have you been? You need to put aside some money and get yourself one. There are two models, and brands that come to mind when searching for monitors, and they are the Asus VG248QE, and the BenQ X2411P. I am sure you’ve heard of them before, and with good reason. These bad boys are going to be displaying at 24” diagonally with 1080P quality. On top of that, from a competitive standpoint, they offer a 1 MS response time, and 144 Hz refresh rate. The refresh rate, and response time are industry leaders, and should be given additional consideration when you’re looking at potentially budgeting a monitor.

If you’re going to be buying a monitor, we highly recommend spending the extra $60 on one of these two monitors. Not only are they going to be miles more reliable, but they are going to have sharper, and a more crisp picture. This sharp picture is going to help alleviate some of the lost graphics you may get when lowering your settings to get to that juicy 144 FPS.

Both the BenQ XL2411P and the Asus VG248QE are used in a tournament settings, and in pro gamer’s personal setup. You will often-time see them at CS:GO tournaments. For the Overwatch League, they are using Asus ROG Swift PG258Q. This is the big brother to the VG248QE. It is going to have a refresh rate of 240 Hz, and be significantly more pricey. So, if you have a monster PC and are capable of hitting 240 FPS on Overwatch, that is an incredibly good option as well. As you can see, though, Asus is a very reputable brand that should not be slept on.

To take full advantage of your 144 Hz monitor, you need to ensure that you’re actually getting 144 FPS. If you are not, we highly recommend lowering your settings to get yourself there. You’re limiting yourself from evolving, and no one wants to see that! Additionally, you may just need to simply lift your cap on FPS. Check how to change your Overwatch cap here.

Check Out The Settings Of Your Favorite Overwatch Streamer

Overwatch settings are going to vary from streamer, to streamer. Especially if the streamer is more of a content creator than a pro player. Take Surefour, for example. Surefour is going to have reduced settings to take advantage of the increased FPS given he is a competitive Overwatch player. He needs the additional performance to ensure that his game isn’t going to hitch, or stutter in the heat of battle.

On the flipside, you’re going to have your content creators. The content creators are going to have their graphics significantly bumped to produce that clean, and crisp image that YouTuber, and Twitch viewers want. No one wants to watch gameplay on stretched resolution like the majority of the Fortnite streamers. You are almost forced to watch it at this point because everyone is doing it. Luckily, Overwatch doesn’t take to that trend, and the majority of content creators are producing at 1920x1080p.

If you’re interested in a list of settings of Overwatch streamers, and pro players, check them out here.

How To Set Uncapped FPS Overwatch

Uncapped FPS in Overwatch is of extreme importance, and if you’ve never checked your settings, it is likely being capped. To uncap your settings, you must open Overwatch and visit the video settings page. From there, you are going to see a “Limit FPS” setting at the bottom. You need to change the dropdown to “Custom” and then increase the slider to 300. While this doesn’t technically uncap your FPS, the likelihood of you being at 300 FPS is pretty slim. Either way, you could be unintentionally capping your monitor at 60 Hz, and you will see significant improvement immediately by changing this setting.