Blizzard Entertainment Inc. is a company know for creating such popular series as Diablo, Warcraft, and StarCraft, yet this Friday at the Blizzard Convention (BlizzCon), a new PC exclusive shooter was revealed. The first-person shooter titled, Overwatch, looks to land somewhere between a Pixar film and the Valve shooter Team Fortress 2. Stylistically, the graphics look gorgeous and encouraging, definitely bright enough to lure the masses. Take a look.
The gaming world sees new shooters all the time, leading one to ponder, does Overwatch matter? It will. Considering the reputation of Blizzard Entertainment and the following that they have, this new title has a lot of people waiting for it. Unfortunately, they will be waiting for a while, the title has no release date and a beta announced for 2015. The odd thing is that Blizzard is known for creating excellent games, none of which belong to the shooter genre. This could be the opportunity for them the stake a claim in the globally enjoyed genre.
Aside from the cinematic trailer, Blizzard Entertainment also released a five-minute trailer that not only shows off actual gameplay, but gives a look into the different character classes and what they are capable of. This alone proves that Blizzard knows what they are doing. Some of the biggest flops were games that revealed a gorgeous cinematic trailer with no gameplay footage. However, Blizzard took it another step past that and demonstrated what the chaotic six-vs-six player combat would play like while enlightening players on the diversity of the games’ cast. As a beta, twelve characters decorate the roster. For now, Blizzard has loosely grouped the characters into four different identifying types: Defense, Offence, Support, and Tank.
Each character has an ability, a passive ability, and an ultimate ability, which becomes available in a match after a certain requirement has been met (changes depending on character). Not only does this multi-ability system constantly influence the tide of battle, it more appropriately distinguishes each character, making character counters and team balancing more of a game leading concept. Such ideas are what make additional characters actually change the game and gain importance. Balancing such a title sounds like a tremendous, and fluctuating task.
It is no surprise that Overwatch actually comes from the ashes of the previously announced and then canceled MMO, Titan. After more than five years in development Titan was reevaluated and deemed less than worthy. “What we reevaluated is whether that’s the game we really wanted to be making. The answer is no.” Do what you love and love what you do, right?
Seeing a company drop a game because it was not fun and full of passion is rare and really the ultimate result of two things: money, and a company that really cares about the products they make. In 2008, Blizzard Entertainment and Activision merged to create the holding company, Activision Blizzard. Both companies remain their own separate entities and have continued to operate without most people noticing the change.
Blizzard Entertainment is committed to making powerful titles full of passion and complexity. Overwatch looks to be a first-person PC exclusive shooter that will demand the attention of gamers everywhere. The title has a beta announced for 2015.