November 19, 2019 at 1:09 PM #1374
Rating: 4.0 – Great
A great game held back by its value proposition
Written by: Erick Ashe
I can sum up Overwatch in one word, incredible. The character, graphics, gameplay, nearly everything about this game is incredible. It is a multiplayer experience that is worth every penny and I highly recommend that you get this game right now. Most of the fun comes from the gameplay and how addicting it is. The way you actually have to use teamwork and cooperation to win a match is satisfying and wonderfully enjoyable. Since the matches are shorter, the gameplay doesn’t become a chore, and you always feel like you’re ready to go another round. The only thing that is holding it back though is its few modes, disappointing loot system, and the severe lack of a story mode.
One of the game’s strengths is its diverse cast of characters. Every single hero has his/her own personality that you can easily gravitate to, From Tracer’s peppy attitude to Soldier: 76’s stern and serious demeanor. And their personalities also carry over to how they play. For example, McCree, the cowboy, not only looks like a character ripped straight out of a western, he plays like it too. For instance, instead of left trigger being used to aim down the sights, he uses all of his ammo in quick succession to deal huge amounts of damage, granted if you’re close enough. I could go on for hours and hours about each character, but I think you get the gist.
What I love is that each character has their own skills that can appeal to almost any play style, making the game easily accessible. You want to go loud and proud, pick a character like Reaper or Roadhog. Want to stay back and pick people off when they’re vulnerable, I’d suggest Widowmaker or Hanzo. This kind of diversity also carries over to the four different classes. For example, Hanzo and Junkrat may both be defense characters, but they play nothing alike. Hanzo focuses on staying back and picking people off out in the open. Junkrat focuses on causing all sorts of chaos on the battlefield. Using explosives and grenades to keep enemies off balance.
Team composition is an important aspect when it comes to maximizing your chances of success. If you’re on the offensive, then it’s best that you have characters that are built for attacking the objective. If you’re on the defensive, pick characters that help block the enemy’s path to victory. If your character does not fit well with your team, don’t worry, you can change your character to someone more fitting. Just make sure that you don’t have a team of the same character or you’re going to have a bad time.
One of the major problems in Overwatch is its lackluster loot system. Every time you level up, you get a loot box. This loot box contains skins, sprays, highlight intros, emotes, etc. The problem is that it’s completely randomized. You can put hours into getting loot boxes or purchase them with cash, hoping that you will get something cool for your character, but you end up with useless junk. And after level twenty, it becomes a grind to just get one loot box. Sure, you can get currency from loot boxes to buy items separately, but that’s randomized too.
Another issue I have with the game is that its modes are shockingly sparse. There are only four modes spread across thirteen maps. Assault, Escort, Control, and Hybrid, a combination of Control and Escort, and that’s it. The only other feature that adds some variety is Arcade, which is basically the same thing only it adds more variation to different modes and maps, but pretty much throws balance out the window. The game needs more modes, because as it stands right now, it’s as deep as an ocean, but as wide as a puddle.
The most disappointing and puzzling omission however, is the game’s missing story mode. Overwatch has such a rich universe that begs to be expanded on, but unfortunately many questions are left unanswered, like why was Overwatch disbanded? Or Who are the Omnics and why are they even referenced when they never play a part in the game? None of those questions are ever answered. Character interactions however, do give us eye drops of information, regarding character relationships and past events, but that’s about it. While the story is being expanded on in other mediums, like comics and animated shorts, an actual story mode that would have added much needed meat to the game’s bones, has unfortunately been left on the backburner.
Overwatch is a masterclass in multiplayer only first person shooters. It is a game that I will look to as the way you are supposed to do multiplayer only shooters, for the most part. It succeeds at nearly every aspect, from its charming characters, addictive gameplay and overall sense of fun. Even with its few modes, poor loot system, and non existent story, it’s still an great game. While we will never get to see the supposed genre defining MMO Titan, we got Overwatch out of the ordeal and that’s just fine by me.
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