Overwatch (Video Game Review)

Blizzard's Overwatch has released for Xbox One, PS4 and PC. Let's check it out!

Blizzard is known for great games like Diablo, World of Warcraft, and Starcraft. A company that is renowned for creating some of the best multiplayer games in the world--it is no surprise that Overwatch attracted over nine million players during open beta alone.

Overwatch is a multiplayer shooter consisting of six players on two opposing teams. There are 21 heroes to choose from in the hero gallery--with each one having its own set of unique abilities and weapons. Gamers can unlock new content for each hero during gameplay consisting of around 54 to 55 unlocks per hero. Some of the content that can be unlocked includes new skins, emotes, victory poses, voice lines, sprays and highlight intros.

The playable heroes in Overwatch are:

1. Bastion
2. D.VA
3. Genji
4. Hanzo
5. Junkrat
6. Lucio
7. McCree
8. Mei
9. Mercy
10. Pharah
11. Reaper
12. Reinhardt
13. Roadhog
14. Solider: 76
15. Symmetra
16. Torbjorn
17. Tracer
18. Windowmaker
19. Winston
20. Zarya
21. Zenyatta

As with all multiplayer games of this nature, every character fits into one of the four roles--offense, defense, support and tank. Overwatch encourages players to test out the different characters with the ability to switch between them while in-game at the home base or after death.

Overwatch is set in the near future after an Omnic Crisis on Earth. The crisis was a rebellion where the omnics raised up against their creators. The omnics were made to boost manufacturing for the sole purpose of creating economic equality around the world. As the robots raised up against their human creators, cities were destroyed and the nations deployed their best soldiers with the Overwatch team. The team was able to take down those responsible for the uprising and save the world. Overwatch was kept as a team of peacekeepers, but eventually the people turned against the heroes, destroying their headquarters.

Once you boot up the game, the first thing gamers will notice is the gorgeous visuals, fantastic voice acting and the incredible soundtrack. The characters are beyond stunning and you can tell a lot of love and detail went into each one. Before heading into battle, players are given the opportunity to learn the basics of Overwatch with the tutorial and practice ranges. These are very helpful tools to learn the basic mechanics and controls of the game before heading into battle against other players.

The four main game modes in Overwatch are Assault, Escort, Assault/Escort and Control across twelve maps. Anyone that has ever played a multiplayer shooter will be able to quickly jump in and enjoy the fast-paced action. However, if even you have never played a game of this nature, Overwatch makes it very easy to quickly pick up the basics and start playing like you're a pro.

The Menu Play Options include:

  • Quick Play - Jump into a game against other players of your skill.
  • Play vs. AI - Hone your skills against a team of AI-controlled heroes.
  • Custom Game - Change the rules and play a game with your friends or AI.
  • Arcade - Embrace the mayhem in weekly brawls.
As you play, gamers earn experience from kills, effectively using their powers and through a user-voted system after battles. While gaining experience levels, players receive loot boxes containing a wide array of items for their characters like voice lines, poses and more.

Overwatch keeps it simple--the whole point of the game is to just kill your enemies but to do it in the most impressive way possible. Every character has special abilities and weapons alongside their ultimate power that can be utilized once fully charged--timing your attacks just right can lead to some seriously cool effects and very entertaining kills. The characters are extremely well balanced and each one is ridiculously fun to play in their own way.

The maps in Overwatch are all exquisitely designed and enjoyable which is very rare for a game of this nature. Most of the time you have those few maps that you can not stand to play but that just isn't the case with Overwatch. The replayability in Overwatch comes mostly from its progression system that awards loot boxes after each level and gives those die-hard collectors something to work towards. The fact that the progression system is based around the premise of just receiving some extra bonus items is a breath of fresh air when compared to most games today. However, microtransactions do exist in Overwatch to purchase additional loot boxes but it isn't really necessary to the gameplay.

While Overwatch is fantastically brilliant, I just can't get over the fact that Blizzard decided not to incorporate a single player campaign in this beautiful game world. There is a lot of missed opportunity here and the addition of a single player portion could have really put this game over the top.

In the end, Overwatch is a great game that is extremely well-designed, polished and gorgeous. Overwatch manages to stay entertaining and fun no matter how many times you play it making it extremely addictive. If you have been looking for a great multiplayer shooter, then look no further with Overwatch. To learn more, visit the official Overwatch website.

Score: 9.5 out of 10
Reviewed for PS4

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