9.5

Overwatch

Release date: May 24, 2016
Platforms: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One

Overwatch is a multiplayer online-only first-person shooter created by Blizzard Entertainment in 2016. Unusually for Blizzard, Overwatch is an all-new franchise that does not share characters and setting with any earlier games. However, some concepts, archetypes and lore elements are based on the enigmatic MMORPG Titan, which was canceled in 2014.

The game is set in a near future world, where Earth had lived through a golden age of technological progress and a deadly robot uprising, which was later called the Omnic Crisis. Omniums, self-aware production facilities, launched the production of hostile combat robots to battle humankind. The Crisis was resolved with the help of Overwatch, a global task force dedicated to restoring peace.

Though heroes of Overwatch succeeded in stopping the rebelling Omnics, years of internal struggle for power and the subsequent destruction of the force’s headquarters lead to their disbanding. Without Overwatch, global instability grew rapidly, resulting in corporate conflicts and terror attacks. Combined with rumors of a new Omnic Crisis, this instability prompted many notable ex-heroes to reunite and stand against threats to humanity.

In its essence, Overwatch offers a team-based, fast-paced, and arena-centered gameplay which is both highly accessible and surprisingly deep. Players start by selecting a character out of more than two dozen. Each character fits into a tactical category: Offense, Defense, Tank or Support. Forming a team of six, players fight the opponents while securing control points, transporting payload or capturing the flag.

The game is positioned as character-driven with focus on individual playstyles of characters instead of a strictly class-based system. For example, both Genji and McCree are offensive heroes but their gameplay differs greatly. McCree relies on his six-round revolver, which shoots either accurately or rapidly, and quick evasion rolls that immediately reload his gun, while Genji can run up walls, make double-jumps, deflect bullets and slash enemies with a katana.

While participating in game matches, players earn experience based on their hero’s efficiency, teamwork and personal accomplishments. After gaining a level, players get a random loot box which contains cosmetic items like voice lines, character skins, emotes or victory poses. Some of these items can be purchased with in-game credits or real-world currency, others can only be awarded for completing a specific task.

Despite being a new franchise, Overwatch quickly gained an impressive fanbase and received universal acclaim. Both critics and players love the bright and colorful art style, lively and diverse characters, strong multiplayer shooter experience and easy-to-learn, hard-to-master game mechanics.

Game Info

Developer
Blizzard Entertainment
Publisher
Blizzard Entertainment
Modes
Multiplayer
Release date
Worldwide Worldwide — May 24, 2016 (Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One)
System Requirements
Minimum

Processor: Intel Core i3 or AMD Phenom X3 8650 Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460, ATI Radeon HD 4850, or Intel HD Graphics 4400; RAM: 4 GB; Storage: 30 GB; Windows: 7/8/10 x64

Recommended

Porcessor: Intel Core i5 or AMD Phenom II X3 or better; Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce GTX 660 or AMD Radeon HD 7950 or better; RAM: 6 GB; Storage: 30 GB; Windows: 7/8/10 x64

Team-based
Sci-fi
First-person shooter

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