BlizzCon 2014 is in full swing, and while I was expecting plenty of Blizzard-style announcements, a new title was a little surprising – let alone a squad-based First Person Shooter. While Overwatch certainly resembles Team Fortress, it definitely looks like a lot of fun.
Here’s a brief introduction to a few of the characters.
Followed by the most important feature – Actual Gameplay :)
Now that you’ve seen the trailers for Overwatch, what do you think? Are you game?
[James Huneycutt] – Impressions on Overwatch trailer
Blizzard is known for a lot of things – excellent production value, incredible polish, and deep worlds rich in lore and narrative. What they are not known for, historically speaking, is surprises. Blizzard has a very few, very carefully chosen intellectual properties. And whenever news is announced, I think we all expect it to revolve around whichever sequel happens to be up this particular year.
Which makes today’s announcement all the more unexpected and exciting! I doubt anyone expected a new franchise and even less a brand-new intellectual property, and that’s just what Overwatch is: the first new Blizzard IP in 17 years. Given the quality of their existing franchises, and their limited number, this announcement is definitely something to get excited about.
In short, Overwatch looks like the end result of shoving Team Fortress and a Pixar film into a blender, with a healthy dose of MOBA-inspired game mechanics sprinkled over the top. It’s clear that it’s intended to scratch the itches of the competitive communities of shooters and MOBAs alike, and the art style looks to be geared toward both broad appeal and accessibility.
As in a garden-variety MOBA the game is populated with unique heroes, each with distinctive weapons and class abilities – and thus far the heroes seem to fall into a few broad categories: ranged, melee, and support. The game modes seem to be straight-forward, with objective capture and what looks like a tug-of-war mode – I think we can safely presume there will be standard free-for-all and team death matches, and likely a capture-the-flag mode. But you don’t need to reinvent the wheel, you just need to make sure it rolls, and I’m most excited about the level of polish and balance that Blizzard typically brings to a title being applied to the class-based shooter sub-genre.
Overwatch will be going into Beta sometime in 2015, and you can sign up right here on Blizzard’s product overview page – as well as check out a profile on all the launch heroes for the title.
Thanks for reading, and as Andrew mentioned, we’d love to hear from you on what you think about the Overwatch announcement. Stick around for more BlizzCon 2014 news!