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Overwatch Lag Spikes: What They Mean and How to Combat Them

Overwatch lag spikes can kill your game. In any FPS, a stable connection is imperative to the enjoyment of the game. Lag can happen if your computer hardware isn't up to snuff, but a lot of the times it's Blizzard's servers that are the problem. If you're experiencing frequent lag or rubberbanding, here are some ways to minimize your contribution to lag.

Overwatch Lag Spikes: How to Combat Them

Internet Connection

You should always be using a wired internet connection. Even if you don't have the fastest internet, having a stable, wired connection will make sure you have the best performance you can get. Resetting your network devices will solve some issues as well.

Checking Ping

You can check your ping in game by pressing CTRL+Shift+R. This will also show the frames per second, as well as the round trip time. If the RTT is higher than your ping, you will be more susceptible to lag.

System Requirements

This seems obvious, but make sure your computer meets the minimum requirements to run Overwatch. This will make sure your lag isn't caused by your system struggling to run the game. These are the official minimum system requirements, taken from Blizzard's website:

Operating System: Windows 7 / Windows 8 / Windows 10 64-bit
Processor: Intel Core i3 or AMD Phenom X3 8650
Video: NVIDIA GeForce GTX460, ATI Radeon HD4850, or Intel HD Graphics 4400
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Storage: 30 GB available hard drive space
Internet: Broadband internet connection
Resolution: 1024 x 768 minimum display resolution

However, Blizzard recommends you use either an Intel Core i5 or AMD Phenom II X3 processor or better, NVIDIA GeForce GTX660 or AMD Radeon HD 7950 video card or better, and 6GB of RAM for optimal performance.

You should also turn off any background processes running on your computer that could be eating up RAM. For example, Autodesk has been reported as contributing to a lot of lag.

Unfortunately, there is only so much you can do to minimize lag spikes, as there are many places where it can go wrong. Most often, and especially if other games do not lag, it'll be Blizzard's problem server side. Sometimes, you can only hope Blizzard will fix the issue.

Photo courtesy of Blizzard.