The Overwatch Archives 2021 event went live today. The new event brings back the co-op missions from the 2017, 2018, and 2019 Archives events and added a slew of new event skins to the game. With only two exceptions, this year's Archive's event skins were all historically themed. These historical skins are absolutely beautiful, and I for one will be grinding out games until I get them all.
Without further adieu, here are our rankings for the best skin released for the Archives 2021 event.
#8 Mercy Camouflage
Kicking off our list we have the lowest-ranked event skin — Camouflage Mercy. This epic skin features a dark green color palette, with gray and black camo accents on her legs, arms, and back. Mercy's hair is short and black. Finally, there are a few small gold accents on her shoes, knee guards, and other areas of the skin.
This isn't a terrible skin, but it lacks the creative inspiration that was on full display with many of the other skins featured in the Archives 2021 event. You will be able to unlock this skin in Archives week 2 by winning nine matches in quickplay, competitive, or arcade modes.
#7 Lucio Corredor
Next on our list is the new Lucio Corredor skin. This epic skin depicts Lucio as a hardcore biker, replete with spikes on his helmet, flames on his legs, and exhaust pipes coming out of his backpack. This skin will go perfectly with Torbjorn's biker-themed outfit and features a very cool aesthetic for anyone who likes black and orange color combinations. You can unlock this new skin by winning nine matches in quickplay, competitive, or arcade modes this week.
While it may be a lower-ranking skin compared to the other Archive skins, that doesn't mean this is a bad design by any stretch. Corredor is a dope skin that any Lucio stan would be proud to rock.
#6 Zarya Polyanitsa
The Zarya Archives 2021 skin is inspired by Polyantisa warriors, who were medieval Russian warrior-women often depicted in Slavic and Russian folklore and poems. They were the female counterpart to the Bogatyr, and are often thought of in a similar way to Amazons.
The skin itself shows Zarya in full Polyantisa armor and regalia, with her hair pulled back in a short, braided style. There are sun symbols on her belt and shoulder guards, and she has a very cool star-inspired shield design on her back. Perhaps the coolest part about this skin is her incredible dragon-inspired weapon design:
This is a dope skin and weapon design that harkens back to Zarya's Russian heritage. This instantly became one of my favorite Zarya skins.
#5 Zenyatta Subaquadic
The brand new legendary subaquatic skin from Zenyatta is an incredible skin design that will match perfectly with Hammond's submarine-themed skin. In this skin, Zenyatta's head is presented in the style of an old-school diving helmet, while the metal parts of him are made from brass, a common material used in the early diving rigs of the 19th century. These aesthetic choices combine with the anchor and sea design presented on his breechcloth to create an old-school under-the-sea aesthetic that I absolutely love.
#4 Tracer Calvary
Tracer's new legendary Calvary skin is a very high concept idea based on her iconic voiceline: "cheers love, the cavalary is here!"
This skin literally depicts Tracer in the garb of an 18th and 19th-century British cavalry member. She is wearing the iconic British military tricorne hat and red coat that was common for calvary members of the time, but the skin also takes creative liberties with her bracers and leggings, leading to a neo-historical masterpiece of an outfit. This is a very cool skin that I will definitely be running on my Tracer for a while.
#3 Soldier 1776
The Soldier 1776 skin deserves a top three ranking, if only for the name of the skin itself. Soldier 1776 is based on the design of American revolutionary war uniforms, with the name being a reference to the year the Declaration of Independence was signed. This skin sticks pretty literally to the 18th-century design that has become so iconic, including the blue coat, white trousers, and tricorne hat just like with Tracer's historical skin design. I would go so far as saying this is Solider 76's best skin.
#2 Genji Bushi
The Genji Bushi design is based on the iconic Samarai armor that appeared during the Heian period in Japan. The word Bushi, for those who don't know, is synonymous with 12th century Samaria warriors. This skin adopts the historical armor design of Samarai warriors, including the traditional Samarai blade, helmet, and belt. The developers added just a few light accents that are consistent with Genji's typical armor design, to indicate that this is still a cyborg suit.
Everything about this skin is brilliant and Japanese history buffs are going to be more than pleased to don this armor while they farm Dragon Blade and spam "I need healing."
#1 Widow Mousquetaire
Widow's Mousquetaire skin is absolutely brilliant. It is based on the garb of the French musketeers of the 17th and 18th centuries. Her gun is outfitted with a wooden barrel, harkening back to the older musket designs of the past. Perhaps the coolest part of this legendary skin is the styled Musketeer hat with bright purple plumage that Widowmaker dons on her head. This whole design screams French 18th-century fashion, but with a modern twist, and I am obsessed with it.
Aaron is an esports reporter with a background in media, technology, and communication education.