Overwatch

Overwatch
 
 

From Blizzard Entertainment, legendary designers behind the Warcraft, Starcraft, and Diablo franchises, comes Overwatch - a title that, in spite of it’s flaws, is so full of life at launch, that it’s hard to not be swept up by how great it looks, and how much fun it is to play.

Mechanically speaking, this mostly online-only, fast paced and frenetic, objective oriented, and class-based first person shooter looks and plays just as good as was promised. The level of artistry put into each character, map, and unlockable is astounding. Further, the rock/paper/scissors design of the incredibly varied characters and their weapons/abilities means the gameplay loop is almost always a blast - providing you have a reliable team, or at least a group of friends (not always mutually exclusive).

 
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From the 21 quirky and unique launch characters (split into four classes: Offense, Defense, Tank, and Support), to the level of detail within each of the 12 included maps, the game has a distinct look and feel that lets everything work perfectly within the universe that’s been setup. Each map is locked to one of the game’s four different team based objectives (Escort, Assault, Assault/Escort and Control), and although this severely limits the ways you can play them, each one feels like it’s been finely tuned for that particular style of play.

Despite how much fun the game can be - and it can be an absolute blast with a good squad, the limited number of available modes is a point where the game begins to fall a little short in my opinion. As of writing this review (shortly after launch), not including the Tutorials, there are only four playable modes: Quick Play, Play vs. A.I., Custom game, and Arcade (a weekly, rotating setup with its own rules).

The game severely lacks any sort of team or free-for-all Deathmatch, Last Man Standing, or Capture the Flag - just to name a few. Even Custom Game doesn’t allow for any of these gameplay types, which I find, for a full priced game that has no campaign, to be awfully disappointing.

It should be noted however that ranked Competitive Play (where you can get Achievements/Trophies), along with new heroes and maps will eventually be patched in for free on all platforms. This is great, and a testament to Blizzard supporting the game and the eSport community post-launch, but I also find it to be like applying a band-aid to a gaping wound - there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done before I could possibly say it’s a complete game.

Sure there’s the question of whether any of these modes would work with a roster where no single character stands out as a jack-of-all-trades, but the same can be said for players who opt to play without interacting with their teammates - and from what I can tell, there are a lot of them.

If you don’t work as a unit, communicate, and switch lineups as the flow of the match changes, then no amount of going at it alone by sniping as Widowmaker, high-nooning with McCree, or teleporting with Tracer will pull a victory away from a unified team - they will easily counter you. At the end of the day however, that speaks to one of the best parts about Overwatch - the ability to switch characters mid-match while respawning or by returning to your team’s safe zone.

Continue reading on page 2.




 

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Comments Comments (18)

 
Posted by Syn-Ryn
On Monday 30 May 2016 3:27 PM
2
"The inability to leave a game with your group and remain together"

You can't do that in Xbox One version? Weird thing to be different between the PC/Console versions if so,
 
 
 
Posted by Goonertron
On Monday 30 May 2016 3:35 PM
1
Great review. Best shooter I have played in years,
 
 
 
oconnomiyaki
Posted by oconnomiyaki
On Monday 30 May 2016 3:41 PM
4
30 May 2016, 03:27 PM Reply to Syn-Ryn
"The inability to leave a game with your group and remain together"

You can't do that in Xbox One version? Weird thing to be different between the PC/Console versions if so,
You can do it on the PS4 version, but it has to be the party leader that takes you out. If you leave, you are just leaving the party.

Anyway, as for the review, I guess I'd say I respectfully disagree. Overwatch is the best game I've played in a long, long time. Probably better than any game this generation. Because it understands the essence of being a game: short, enjoyable feedback loops that have you going "Just one more". It's a game I think about playing when I'm not playing it, a game I want to go home to when I'm at work. Just perfectly executed for what it's trying to achieve.
 
 
 
Posted by Bank
On Monday 30 May 2016 4:17 PM
-
It is a good game.
 
 
 
Posted by atipuss
On Monday 30 May 2016 5:39 PM
1
Great review. Totally true...play with friends and have fun :D
 
 
 
Posted by toner
On Monday 30 May 2016 6:23 PM
1
Great review. The game definitely has a bit of work to do outside of the gameplay, and there is potential for it to be an excellent game, but not until more content has been released.
 
 
 
Posted by Nick2016NZ
On Monday 30 May 2016 7:29 PM
1
Played the Beta and thought it was an excellent game, only reason I haven't picked it up is I've still got a tonne of games to get through... looking at you Witcher 3
 
 
 
Posted by LukeB
On Monday 30 May 2016 10:48 PM
2
Thanks for the comment (and for everyone mentioning the group issue we had) :)

Yeah, we had a few party leaders try, and we just couldn't work that part out, so I had to talk about it. Not mentioning that it could have been our fault, that's on me.

I totally agree that the game is a ton of fun, I still can't believe that each round is only a few minutes long - they feel like they last multiple times their length!

20 seconds feels like an eternity when you’re struggling to hold a control point but are somehow managing to hold off the incoming forces one by one as you’re recently wiped team rushes back to help secure the victory - and even longer when you’re killed doing the same thing and trying in vain to get back in hopes of pushing the round into overtime.

It's "Really Good" on the cusp of Great.... but nowhere near excellent, and a far cry from outstanding - in my opinion of course. It's incredibly fun with flaws (besides the user error ones), and I look forward to seeing where the franchise goes, but as a reviewer I had to write what I experienced :)

Super glad you're enjoying it though! (that may come off as sarcastic, but I do mean it)
 
 
 
Posted by ThatUndeadLegacy
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 12:24 AM
-1
if you guys want on pc don't buy it from eb gmes it's $20 more. and you can also get a cheaper ver
 
 
 
Posted by ricky1981
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 9:33 AM
1
I agree with a few of the niggles but I reckon it's a better game than 7.9, it isn't the game of the year that some might have you believe but it's a very well put together package and (provided you play with friends or a decent bunch of randoms) then it is more fun second to second than nearly any other online FPS.

I don't really miss having a campaign although perhaps they could have priced it lower especially given the strong shove to buy loot boxes but if that supports the free content then I guess it could be worse.
 
 
 
Posted by czk51
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 11:33 AM
1
MIght pick this up since NMS is delayed until August. Looks like neat fun.
 
 
 
Posted by ChimeraNZ
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 12:59 PM
1
Pretty solid game to sink a few hours each night. Don't really find it a game where I can play for hours on end - that being said, its another quality release from the masters at Blizzard.

As mentioned in the review, my main gripe is that there doesn't seem to be enough ways to earn loot crates! While I can see that they want to steer clear of 'quests' to prevent people all focusing on the same hero, it would be nice for some alternatives - even having random quests per player might even get people to try out other heroes.
 
 
 
Posted by Bank
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 4:18 PM
1
That article icon of D.Va though. You enticing Koreans to click.
 
 
 
Posted by Bunnny
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 5:31 PM
1
No shout outs to the team?

haha


I agree, its one of the best ever 7/10 games.
 
 
 
Posted by LukeB
On Tuesday 31 May 2016 6:25 PM
1
31 May 2016, 05:31 PM Reply to Bunnny
No shout outs to the team?

haha


I agree, its one of the best ever 7/10 games.
Haha! True, the thanks didn't make the cut for the review itself :P

Honestly though, may not have been the review it is without the help of the NZGamer.com community who partied up and played :)
 
 
 
Posted by dark_hadou1
On Wednesday 1 Jun 2016 10:20 PM
2
Nice review - I agree, they can most defiinitely expand on the game modes, it's a smooth awesome game to play, the variety gets a bit stale once you get used to all the characters and the same 2 game modes
 
 
 
Posted by xBOOZEMONEYx
On Friday 3 Jun 2016 3:30 PM
1
I think I will give it a try. I've heard a lot of good things.
 
 
 
Posted by boybomber12
On Saturday 11 Jun 2016 11:50 AM
-
I have to try this one