I can say with more than a fair share of certainty that Pip is a major source of contention within the Paladins community. A Support champion having more in common with the Flanker champions really ruffles some people’s feathers. He’s also got an extra stigma attached to him, to give those who dislike him more fuel to add to the fire. Thanks to Pip being (currently) the ONLY free Support champion, he’s jumped on by any and every new player leading to the image that every Pip player is completely oblivious to the plight of their team as newer players will never heal anyone but themselves. Picture it as the Paladins equivalent of I Need Healing. It’s just as funny, after all.
So what do I find so endearing about this fennec fox? Well, since I’m obviously here to defend the vulpine furball, let’s get on with it. Mainly, it’s the reason why the majority seem to hate him. I love the fact he’s a mixed breed style of champion in a game which locks you to a role for the duration of a match. It’s not an exact split down the middle either, more 75/25. It’s his flexibility in a match and his versatility in team lineups that makes him great. But more than any of that, he’s simply a blast to play. His bubbly, bouncy personality perfectly conveys the way he handles in combat, always with a trick up his sleeve.
If you build damage Pip, he becomes a twitchy, aggressive powerhouse with the potential to quickly chase and finish enemies or quickly spring to safety or both at once with some luck. Pip is also excellent in 1v1 scenarios due to his ability to burst heal himself, giving him the extra sustain he needs to outlast and kill more troublesome damage/flank champions. His potion launcher is also a very potent weapon at all ranges dealing 600 on a direct hit and gains an additional 40% damage against targets slowed by his explosive flask with the damage legendary card. Essentially, he’s a flank with a throwable health potion that heals everyone in the radius for 1000HP.
There are other healers in Paladins which offer more consistent healing over a match, but I think people are too quick to throw away the benefits of INSTANT healing. I’ve saved uncountable people who were a split-second from death who then kill their pursuer(s), having unwittingly wandered out of position since they thought they were home and dry. The healing legendary doubles the effect of Pip’s potion and can be used to further bait the enemy. Granted, it’s a risky strategy using your team as live bait to force an enemy move, but provided you’re quick off the mark, it can work wonders. Even without the healing legendary, hitting multiple teammates can buy them the time they need in an instant. But then there’s his ultimate.
This is why, to me, Pip will always have a place. Play your cards right with enough patience and timing and his ultimate, Evil Mojo, can flip the outcome of a round (and possibly an entire match) in seconds. You can build Pip for healing or damage and regardless still have this massive boon lying in wait for the perfect moment to hatch a counter-attack, especially if you rush Morale Boost to regenerate your ultimate faster. For only a few precious seconds, what was moments ago an immovable bulwark or an unstoppable slaughterhouse is reduced to nothing but feathered prey for you and your team to sink your teeth (and bullets) into. So, that’s Pip – Literally a fox in the henhouse.