Genji Abilities and Strategy

Last updated on Mar 15, 2018 at 16:57 by Mournflakes 6 comments

Table of Contents

On this page, you will find a detailed overview of the abilities that Genji has access to. We also explain how to best use these abilities.

The other pages of our Genji guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.


Genji TL;DR Tips

  • Genji is a flanker! Unless he has Dragonblade Icon Dragonblade available, he should never take on two undamaged enemies at once. The only time Genji should engage multiple enemies without backup is when he can kill one of them with the burst Damage of Shuriken Icon Shuriken and Swift Strike Icon Swift Strike.
  • Harassing as Genji is just as important as securing kills. If Genji can distract an enemy from a teamfight (especially a healer or a DPS hero) while dealing damage to the enemy team, he is doing his job. Therefore, Genji players should never try to force kills in regular combat situations.
  • Waiting for the right opportunity to use Genji's Dragonblade Icon Dragonblade can make the difference between a win or a loss. For this reason, Genji should always make sure that he can secure at least two kills with Dragonblade if he chooses to use it on his own. More importantly, Genjis should coordinate Dragonblades with ally ultimates if possible. When coordinated correctly, there is little the enemy team can do to stop him from ripping through their ranks.
  • Swift Strike Icon Swift Strike should rarely be used outside of securing kills, reaching caught-out enemies, and escaping death.
  • Genji should constantly be using Cyber-Agility Icon Cyber-Agility's double jumps to turn himself into a smaller hitbox that will frustrate attacking enemies.
  • Always use alternate fire Shuriken Icon Shurikens when face-to-face with enemies to maximize Genji's DPS.

Genji's Abilities



Genji Cyber-Agility
Cyber-Agility Genji
  • Passive

Climb on walls and double jump.

Before looking at Genji's active abilities, we should first talk about his passive ability, Cyber-Agility Icon Cyber-Agility. This ability has two effects.

The first effect allows Genji to climb walls by holding down the jump key while moving into a wall (this ability works exactly like his brother Hanzo's Wall Climb Icon Wall Climb). It should be noted that Genji can only wall climb once while he is in the air. Therefore, Genji cannot climb a wall, jump of that wall, and begin to climb another wall. To reset Genji's wall climb ability, a player must touch a level surface.

Second, it enables Genji to perform a double jump. Once Genji has jumped once, he may jump again as if he were on the ground. The effect is limited to 2 jumps, so Genji can jump into a wall climb, then jump once more when he falls off the wall. Double jump therefore allows him to jump twice as high as other heroes. It should be noted that if Genji starts his wall climb from the ground, this will use one of his jumps. This means Genji can never double jump after wall climbing, but Genji can double jump into a wall climb.

Cyber-Agility is an integral part of Genji's high mobility (Swift Strike Icon Swift Strike is also crucial, as we will see below), so double jumping and wall climbing is critical to high-tier Genji play (and it is really fun).


Shuriken (Primary Fire)

Genji Shuriken
Shuriken (LMB, RMB) Genji

LMB: Throw an accurate burst of 3 projectiles. RMB: Throw a fan of 3 projectiles in an arc.

The primary fire of Genji's Shuriken Icon Shuriken shoots 3 projectile DPS shurikens in quick succession. The shurikens fly in a straight path relative to where the player is aiming his reticle when the projectile is released. This means that each of the shurikens will have their own travel path if the player swipes their mouse across the screen while the throwing animation goes off. There is no damage drop-off for shurikens, so each ninja star will deal a consistent 28 base damage. That said, the projectiles travel 60 meters per second, which means Genji must track enemy movements to score hits with his shurikens, especially when firing long range.

This is Genji's only consistent long range ability. Since it takes 8 non-headshot shurikens (which would take almost 3 seconds to throw) to kill a 200 health enemy, this ability is clearly meant to be a harassing mechanism rather than a major source of Genji's DPS.


Shuriken (Alternate Fire)

Genji Shuriken
Shuriken (LMB, RMB) Genji

LMB: Throw an accurate burst of 3 projectiles. RMB: Throw a fan of 3 projectiles in an arc.

The Shuriken Icon Shuriken alternate fire also shoots 3 projectiles, but unlike Genji's primary fire, these shurikens are released at the same time in a wide horizontal arc in front of Genji. Each shuriken deals the same amount of damage as the primary fire shurikens, but the rate of fire for his alternate is slightly faster. The increased firing speed rewards players for playing Genji near enemies, as ninjas are never afraid to get up close and personal with their foes.

Genji's alternate fire actually matches Genji's preferred combat distance. As Genji, players want to close in on weak enemies and deal high damage amounts as quickly as possible. The higher rate of fire allows you to shoot far more shurikens, and these are more difficult for opponents to avoid when you are in their face.



Genji Deflect
Deflect (E) Genji
  • Cooldown: 8 seconds

Deflect incoming projectiles towards the direction you are aiming.

Deflect Icon Deflect is an ability that lasts for 2 seconds when activated. During this time, any projectiles that strike Genji from the front will be deflected at the location of Genji's crosshair.

  • Deflected abilities will damage Genji's enemies, and maintain the utility that the initial ability has. For example, deflected Pharah rockets will deal splash damage and displace enemies, and McCree's Flashbang Icon Flashbang will stun opponents.
  • Only projectiles (including bullets) can be deflected. This means channeled or beam weapons (Symmetra' Photon Projector, Zarya's Particle Cannon primary fire, etc.) will penetrate Genji's Deflect and damage Genji.
  • Genji can Deflect ultimate abilities such as Zarya's Graviton Surge Icon Graviton Surge (before the orb she shoots explodes) or Hanzo's Dragonstrike Icon Dragonstrike (before the arrow he shoots turns into dragons).
  • Deflect does not do anything against AoE/splash effects (such as Pharah's Rocket Launcher's rocket explosion or Soldier: 76's Helix Rocket's explosion).
  • Melee attacks are not deflected (they cannot damage Genji's enemies) but they are still blocked by Deflect, meaning that Genji takes no damage from them. This includes Reinhardt's Rocket Hammer swings.
  • Genji will be hit by any enemy projectiles or abilities that strike him from the side or back even when Deflect is active.
  • Deflected projectiles cannot damage Genji's allies.

Deflect serves two main purposes for Genji: dealing damage and surviving. However, these two uses are often merged into one. This is because Genji players should never be content with only blocking damage by using Deflect — instead, you should always try to aim at the enemies while Deflect is active in order to return that damage onto them.


Swift Strike

Genji Swift Strike
Swift Strike (LShift) Genji
  • Cooldown: 8 seconds

Rapidly dash forward and inflict damage on enemies. Kills reset the cooldown.

Swift Strike Icon Swift Strike is an ability that causes Genji to dash forward (in the direction of his crosshair) a reasonable 15 meters. Any enemies Genji comes in contact with during this dash take 50 points of damage.

Whenever Genji kills or gets an assist on an enemy (even if he did not use Swift Strike on that hero), then the cooldown of Swift Strike is instantly reset. Swift Strike's cooldown is also reset immediately when Genji uses Dragonblade Icon Dragonblade. Moreover, it is important to note that Swift Strike can be used to get up to a higher position (by dashing upwards), which means Genji can cross small gaps or go from the first to the second level of a building using only Swift Strike.

Genji should very rarely use Swift Strike to go into a fight with multiple enemies. Genji should only Swift Strike into a group of enemies if one of the opponents is low, and Swift Strike will secure a kill. He can then use Swift Strike to dash away from the rest of the group of enemies, fleeing to safety to once again harass the enemy from a distance.



Genji Dragonblade
Dragonblade (Q) Genji
  • Ultimate

Deadly melee weapon.

When Genji activates Dragonblade Icon Dragonblade, a melee sword replaces his Shuriken Icon Shuriken for 8 seconds. During this time, Genji can make a maximum of 9 slashes with the sword (limited by the sword's rate of fire/slashing), each of which deals high damage (120) to all enemies in an arc in front of him.

When Dragonblade is used, Genji unsheathes his sword, during which time he cannot attack, making Genji vulnerable for the first second after using his ult. Moreover, Genji's enemies hear a very distinctive audio warning. While Dragonblade is active, Genji's movement speed is slightly increased, and he cannot use his Shurikens (but he can utilize his other abilities).

The damage that Genji can deal with Dragonblade is extremely high (over 1000, if we assume that each slash only hits one target). However, making good use of Dragonblade is not easy. When using Dragonblade, Genji must attack his enemies up close to deal effective damage. However, opponents will do everything they can to kill the cyber-ninja before he can finish off enemies. Therefore, Genji players must have quick reflexes to expertly maneuver through enemy lines without getting caught out by the team. Moreover, the audio warning gives opponents a head start to react to Genji's double-edged fury.

About our Author

Mournflakes is a flex Grandmaster Overwatch player who boasts a career high SR rating of 4433. His favorite heroes are Roadhog, Soldier: 76, and Ana. He has played Overwatch since its initial release, and has put over 700 hours into competitive play. When not writing guides, you can catch Mournflakes streaming on his Twitch channel.