The matches are quick, the gameplay is quick, the excitement comes quick and lasts the round and the satisfaction of receiving Play of The Game has to be more satisfactory than a final kill shot of any other shooter on the market. Overwatch is a diamond in the rough that mixes a fast paced shooter with the required teamwork of a battle-arena style game all while including on-the-fly shifts to help tip the scales to your favor. It is a non-committal game that allows you to pick up and play at leisure. So why has Overwatch been so overlooked on the marketing front?
It’s not to say that Overwatch was not known or did not have a massive following, but for a new franchise for a beloved developer in Blizzard, it did not receive the same amount of love for other new IP’s for beloved developers such as Bungie’s Destiny received. Given that Bungie had only a couple franchises they had under their belt, Destiny was received with massive regard and plastered to everything that It could be. Blizzard Entertainment, however, has a track record of some of the most beloved franchises in gaming; I still believe Diablo 2 to be one of the near perfect games to ever release. Though marketing deals did not seem to be as highly touted for this new IP despite the track record.
Albeit, when I first heard of the game I had no interest in the game. At the time, Gearbox was working on Battlefront which left me intrigued at its E3 demo which featured an amazing M83 song and Bethesda is still working on Battlecry; in the middle is Blizzard’s near perfectly balanced game. On occasion, I would see some new content to the game being released, most of this was done by Blizzard themselves in smaller doses via social media. When the beta was released, I gave it a whirl and much to my surprise I found it highly enjoyable. I decided I was not going to be purchasing the game and I went back to my own personal world I had, building bases and taming wild dinos in Ark: Survival Evolved. Though from time to time, there was this little itch in my mind to go get the game and play a few rounds. Eventually, I got my ass off Ark and joined the world of Overwatch, a game I had no intentions of buying.
Luckily for gamers, we are a breed that is not shy from seeking information. For Overwatch, there are plenty of reasons to be overly-hyped for the game:
Future Content Is Free
Free DLC coming in time to Overwatch that includes characters and maps. Talking to fans via YouTube, Game Manager, Jeff Kaplan expressed about their decision to go with free updates versus paid DLC. “So we thought about this and we decided the best way to add them to the game is to patch them in as free content and not as DLC.” For gamers that questioned why the game was not a free-to-play title, like myself, it is a relief to know that whatever does come for the future of Overwatch will be free. There still is no official timeline or plan that we know of for the additional content that will be added.
A Competitive Mode Is Incoming
For the current time of this month’s end, players of Overwatch will get to play highly anticipated competitive mode. Blizzard has expressed that while many things are down the pipeline, the competitive play is its immediate focus. Like many other competitive games, this is a season based game that will allow you to start fresh so you don’t feel that you are so far behind versus other gamers. The developer has definitely been taking feedback from players with grace making changes to frequency of overtime, map changes that affect attackers vs defenders and map quickness and adjusting the ranking system from a progression system to a skill rating.
The Balanced Game Continues to Get More Balanced
Blizzard commits to balancing to make one of the most balanced shooters even more balanced. Updates to McCready and Black Widow, among others, have already hit the PC, with Patch 1.0.4, and scheduled to be rolled into a larger patch at a later date for the console versions of the game. The updates were definitely something that the players have been asking the developer to make adjustments to and it is refreshing feeling to know that they are listening.
Your Favorite Celebs Are Sharing the Overwatch Love
Even celebrities are enjoying Overwatch. One of the best performers I have ever had the pleasure to see in concert is T-Pain. He is lively, eccentric and purely entertaining. Over the last few months, he has been sharing his love for gaming, especially Overwatch. His love for the game has extended to the point that he has made a separate YouTube channel specifically to share his love for Overwatch, among other games, as well as creating a pretty popular Twitch stream. T-Pain is far from the only popular figure to get involved with the game. Conan O’Brien segmented the game in Clueless Gamer alongside cast members from Game of Thrones. There also were sports figures taking on popular gamers in friendly competitive matches in the UK as well as the Netherlands.
Whether or not additional marketing would have made a significant impact to the game, it is still one of the finest shooters on the market. For a game as well balanced as Overwatch is, it definitely will set up competitors to the genre to a higher standard or bust. Blizzard has another ace in deck of its ever shuffling franchises and the gamers should feel assured they are in good hands. Well done Blizzard, well done on Overwatch.