Greetings Ragtag Nation, Ben here! Unless you live under a rock for the last few months, undoubtedly you’ve seen some sort of media relating to the Blizzard’s newest title Overwatch. The game has received unending amounts of hype since the first beta test, and the gaming community has been drooling over the Pixar-like animated intro video. Playable characters Winston, Reaper, Tracer, and Widowmaker were showcased. Reviews across the web consider the game a major success and, in some aspects, I would have to agree. However, Overwatch does not bring anything new or highly innovative to the table. The game feels very similar to Team Fortress 2. The community also has a hand in making or breaking a player’s experience with the game. This will not be a complete bash of the game, but as brutally honest of a review as I can offer.
As stated above, if you’re a veteran of the Team Fortress 2 franchise, you’ll feel right at home moving into Overwatch. The game is broken up into game modes that involve defending an extremely slow moving cart, defending a point on a map, or fighting for control and then defending a king-of-the-hill type position on the map. Opposing teams will be doing their damnedest to keep you from completing your objective, using Overwatch’s arsenal of heroes. The roster is broken up into Attack, defense, tank, and support heroes that all fill those roles in different angles. A support character like Mercy who specializes in single target healing, mobility and revival; plays completely different than Lucio who specializes in displacement and mass buffing teams for speed, health, or shields. The game offers enough heroes to keep team compositions fresh and each match somewhat different than the previous. However, there is nothing stopping a team on defense from picking six bastions.
These characters are also from bloodlines directly descended from Hitler. Each hero has a basic attack, and then two abilities that can provide anything from utility to damage. The game defining plays are usually augmented by ultimates that heroes have to damage/charge through enemies. Ultimates are also used for playing objectives and are strong enough to instantly kill other heroes, cause mass displacement or mass buffs, or give your hero a combat steroid to make them an immediate massive threat.
Multiplayer games that focus around objective-based gameplay rely heavily on team coordination and cooperation. That being said, not all random people on the internet seem to understand this concept. Blizzard did announce that some slight character nerfs were inbound, which I believe is a step in the right direction. However as a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) frequenter, Blizzard must be smart with how often they plan to adjust character damage, skill, and health values and cooldowns or they can spiral into a system that will need constant adjustment and tweaking due to community outcry. League of Legends was a mess in various seasons and Heroes of the Storm has recently been undergoing changes to new characters and balancing.
Going back to coordination, each hero has certain situations in which they can excel. This next gripe, I admit, I have been guilty of time to time. Gameplay for Overwatch revolves around the huge roster of playable heroes. That being said, different heroes excel at different situations. Bastion is not overpowered. Play Genji and reflect his rounds, or switch to a sniper and pick him off from a distance. Even Pharah can use her rockets effectively at range. The point here is people need to realize teams that can adapt will dominate. I love Reinhardt as my main but in a pinch and depending on the goal or map I can play virtually anybody, granted my sniping skill is quite trash tier.
Overall, Overwatch is a fun game. Challenging multiplayer and a diverse roster keep games fresh. Satisfying ultimates and skill diversity allow every character to change the game in their own way, leading teams of 6 or random gamers across the globe to victory. However, Overwatch offers nothing really new to the gaming universe other than giving Blizzard a new title after so many years. As mentioned earlier, fans of the Team Fortress 2 franchise will take to the game with relative ease and those with experience in MOBA type games will also feel some familiarity with the flow of matches.
I give Overwatch a firm 7/10.
Agree or disagree with my analysis? Do I need to just simply git gud? Let me know in the comments or find me at:
Facebook: Team Ragtag page