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Saturday, November 8, 2014

Thoughts on Blizzard's Overwatch

Blizzard announced their new game and IP, Overwatch. A Team-based shooter that's influenced by MOBAs and TF2. Here's some of my thoughts on the game.

The reception to Overwatch is mixed between those who are really interested and those who immediately dislike the game because it's "a TF2 clone". To the former, I say "calm down a bit and wait for beta access" and to the latter I say "you are retarded".

While I have to admit that I find the game interesting from what I've seen of it I still choose to be cautiously optimistic of it. The game looks promising and let's face it, under Blizzard's name the game will of course attract a lot of gamers. However, we do need to take a step back and wait for more information before we jump on the hype train. As it is now, being cautiously optimistic seems to be the right choice. I like what I'm seeing so far but I want to learn more.

As to the "TF2 clone" comment, this isn't really a new kind of ignorant comment as we see this every time a game of certain genres are released. A MOBA comes out? LoL or DOTA clone! an Action RPG comes out? Diablo clone! an MMORPG comes out? WoW clone! The appearance of stupid people who made these kind of comments are to be expected and ignored as they do not know what they are talking about. Gaming improves by iteration, genres improves after developers try to improve upon old concepts and ideas.

Besides, isn't that what Blizzard does best anyways? taking ideas and concepts and fuse it into a great gaming experience. Look at the highly successful World of Warcraft or even their RTS series. They didn't create the genres but they sure as hell made the best games of those genres.

Back to Overwatch, I find that the game successfully grabs my attention with the setting and character design. I never really cared about TF2 but Overwatch immediately interests me. While TF2 also have funny and quirky character design I find it is like watching a TV cartoon show while Overwatch is an equivalent of a Pixar Movie. Both looks interesting but I'm definitely more hyped to see the latter.

As for gameplay, it is really to early to say anything. From what we've seen Overwatch seems to offer a team-based shooter experience combined with MOBA elements like abilities and an ultimate ability for each character.

Just like the gameplay, we still have no idea what the business model will be like. I'd assume that they will sell hero unlocks and skins, just like LoL and HotS. If it's like that I'd be okay with that although I hope they'd use a more nonrestrictive business model so that we can play as any character we want and they can sell cosmetic stuff only. With Blizzard as it is now I think they can afford to use that business model just like Valve's DOTA2.

So, TLDR? I am cautiously optimistic of Overwatch and I'd love to learn and see more of the game. I am really looking forward towards the beta. Is it a totally new genre and a shining example of innovation? nope, but it does look like a competent game with really interesting designs.

For more info on Overwatch you can visit the game's website at

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