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Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked

Overwatch celebrates the season with 7 new legendary skins for its heroes! We see whose been naughty and whose been nice by looking at their quality and ranking them from worst to best.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked

Introduction

It's only fair to warn you, there may be extreme winter puns ahead. Why? Because we're going to be looking at the seven new Overwatch skins that have come out for the second annual Winter event, and we're going to be ranking them on how cool they are. See?

Last year, the Winter event gave us the yeti skin for Winston, which has earned him his very own mini-game, along with some controversy over Mei's "legendary" skin, which was just a basic recolor (though with the added bonus of a snowman shape for her ice block ability). The non-denominational theme continues this year, with skins that have more to do with winter than any holidays that occur within the season. What will follow is a list ranking the skins from worst to best, based on how cool they look, and how well they match the winter theme. Points are also awarded for how much better they are compared to the respective hero's other skin options.

#7: Hanzo "Casual"

Dressed for the cold and maybe some…basketball? A clashing ensemble sees the archer wearing a winter coat, complete with raised collar to block his lips from the wind, along with sweat pants and some high tops. A septum piercing sits a little too high on his nose, almost assuredly drawing his eyes toward the glinting metal, throwing off his aim and causing him to go cross eyed. Most curious is the color of his beard. It's unclear why his beard is white here, when in other skins it's black, but maybe it's just frost collecting on the ol' soup strainer.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - He looks like someone who is cosplaying as Hanzo, but has to wear their coat while standing outside in line.

I swear I don't have a thing against Hanzo. He's not ranking low on my lists because I have some grudge against him due to ally players picking him when he's not needed (see: 95% of the time) or because his Scatter Shot ability is more broken than a piñata. He's just unfortunately been getting some lame extra skins. Thankfully his Okami skin has kept him in business, but all of his event skins have been dull as dish water. This event sadly continued the trend with what is, at the very least, the easiest Overwatch skin to cosplay.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Like his outfit, the bow doesn't see any interesting changes.

#6: Junkrat "Beachrat"

Halfway into December, and the resident arsonist is all ready to hit the sl- oh no wait, it looks like he's going to the beach? That's right, while one part of the world celebrates the winter covered in cozy blankets and hot cocoa, the Plunderer from Down Underer is dressed to fight the heat, not the cold. A rubber ducky inflatable tube looks like a rising sun as it rests on his back, and his sky blue shorts help round out the clear skies color scheme. A spikey-bone peg leg, no doubt a gift from his good friend Roadhog, makes a stark contrast to an otherwise easy going outfit.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Fun in the sun!

Always one to go against the grain, Junkrat gets a skin that looks better suited to the summer event. As was stated in the Halloween list, Junkrat's event skins just haven't been able to live up to the high standard his Doctor Junkenstein skin set. Still, that's not to say that this skin is something to disregard for any of his year-round unlockables. It's fun and silly, just like Junkrat himself, it's just overall not that flashy or interesting, which is very unlike Junkrat himself.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - The blue and orange contrast strongly, giving his grenade launcher an almost Nerf-gun feel.

#5: Bastion "Avalanche"

Trading in the bulk of his default chassis, Bastion sports a sleeker, sportier, look. Especially his head, which looks smaller than normal, has been downsized, perhaps to offer him more speed when going down the slopes. He won't be alone, of course, as the spot reserved for his feather friends is taken up by an elegant snow owl, possibly taking a break between its route between wizarding schools and bedrooms under stairs. Bright red lights stand out against his chest, giving a warming appearance, prompting one to want to warm their hands by the killer robot core. And just for good measure, an orange wool cap rests atop his dome.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Beep boop brrr.

Bastion's had an alright time with his event skins, but just alright. His catalog is rather dull, compared to the antics other heroes get up to. It's a shame, really, because as a robot Blizzard could get even more creative with his design than with the human characters. Still, what he's been given this year isn't terrible, and could easily replace some of his palette swap skins; it just doesn't live up to the character's potential.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - The hat staying on top is a nice touch.

#4: Roadhog "Ice Fisherman"

While others spend their time throwing snowballs or skiing the slopes, Roadhog looks ready to put himself to work with an outfit that invokes Alice in Wonderland's Walrus. Equipped with a vicious three pronged hook, and adorned with the bones of his more dangerous kills, Roadhog is a force to be reckoned with. His Mythbusters mask turns this rotund fisherman into Roadwalrus. Though the key charm hanging from his zipper is cute on first glance, the X's over its eyes says this Australian is not afraid to get his hands dirty.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Could make a lot of oil from that blubber.

There are some out there that believe this skin to be a reference to the Tuskarr from World of Warcraft, but I have to disagree. The tusks he sports are simply too short to be considered Tuskar material. Regardless, this outfit is great, and is one of those skins that turn a hero into an entirely new character. Though we go another year without Blizzard taking the easy route and turning the wide-waisted wastelander into Santa Claus, this is honestly a better idea.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Both gun and hook look vicious with their barbed hooks.

#3: Soldier: 76 "Alpine: 76"

Soldier: 76 is clearly dressed for two goals: to blend in with the snow, and to look freakin' badass. He's accomplished both. Though his face mask makes his head seem smaller than it is, the rest of his outfit is top notch, giving 76 the look of a spy sneaking into a snow-covered enemy hideout. The glowing blue pops beautifully off the snow white and winter sky grey of his suit. The pouches do feel out of place, with their army green coloring, but overall 76 has outdone himself.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Whose footprints are these?

This hero definitely believes in the rule of cool. The Alpine: 76 skin is absolutely awesome looking, even with the obvious strategic hindrance of being a much easier target for observant snipers. Still, there's no arguing with how the hero looks, and he looks downright ice cold. 76 gets a lot of good skins, and it looks like that trend isn't stopping in 2017.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Sadly the gun doesn't see much of a change.

#2: Ana "Snow Owl"

Wise, watchful, and surprising deadly, owls make for great animal motifs for snipers. Ana dons the feathers and the cowl of the rare snow owl, sending the message that nothing will escape her sight, and that her direction will always lead to victory. Ana will have an easy time climbing sheer cliff faces, to get into a good position, thanks to the yellow talons equipped to her boots. Just as Soldier: 76 showed, the color pairing of blue and white is perfect for the snow setting.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - Hoo hoo. Who shot me?
In the last Halloween event, I nearly had Ana at #1 with her Corsair outfit. The pirate-theme may have been a bit on the nose, clearly given to her simply due to her eye patch, but her gun and outfit made the punny idea work in her favor. I made the purchase of that skin because it was so much better than what else I had for her, and I was confident it would last me a long while. How was I to know that she'd get an even better one, one event later? It's a strange move to give one hero two legendaries in a row, considering Doomfist has been out since before the summer event and he's still not seen a single event skin, legendary or otherwise. In any case, this outfit is stellar, and although it has the same strategic disadvantage as Soldier: 76, this skin is another smart 3K investment.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - The gun looks especially cool, carrying the owl-theme all over it.

#1: Sombra "Rime"

Though winter is a time of festivities and loving families, the cold can also be dangerous. It bites and chills, taking life and limb in equal measure. No stranger to cold, calculated, strategies, Sombra takes on the role of Jane Frost this year in her all blue (minus the hair) Rime skin. The outfit is almost aquatic with what look like fins on her arms and hips, but the snow flake prints make it clear just where this Sombra is most comfortable. Not even the cuteness of her swept bob haircut can undercut the deadly chill of this hacker's ensemble.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - While Jack Frost nips at your nose, Jane Frost hacks your Internets. All of them.
What allowed Sombra to overtake Ana for the #1 spot is how much better this skin is from Sombra's other skins. While she doesn't have a terrible selection, much of her wardrobe leaves a lot to be desired. Last year, Sombra got the Peppermint skin for the winter event, and for the longest time that was her best skin, arguably. This year proves once again that just because she's on the naughty list doesn't mean she doesn't get gifts, as she is given an even better skin than last. It's sharp, it's cool, it's everything Sombra is, the skin elevating her character.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - A gun with this many sharp edges should do +10% more melee damage.

Conclusion

Another year has come and gone, and Overwatch has seen some great skins and some not so great skins. The events continue to be the strongest motivator for me to play, simply so I can get those awesome new threads and play with them for the duration of the event, only to be shelved until the next one as I turn to other games.  A new set of Blizzard-property-inspired skins have been teased for year next year, and you know I'll be ranking those as well. At the very least, at least Doomfist will finally be getting a new skin. And I would be remised if I didn't close out by giving a special mention to Orisa's new legendary emote.

Overwatch Winter 2017 Skins Ranked - The best gift of all is seeing Orisa get excited for a puppy. I really hope she doesn't robo-crush it.
The views expressed in this article are those of its author and do not necessarily reflect the rest of the Keen Gamer staff.