Overwatch - Xbox One

Also known as: Overwatch: Origins Edition', 'Overwatch: Origins: Collector's Edition

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Also for: PS4, PC
Viewed: 3D First-person Genre:
Shoot 'Em Up
Media: Blu-Ray Arcade origin:No
Developer: Blizzard Soft. Co.: Activision Blizzard
Publishers: Blizzard (GB)
Released: 24 May 2016 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 12+

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Summary

Overwatch is essentially a five on five team-based first-person shooter (FPS) consisting of a vast array of moving parts. These parts are the characters players can control during any match session and they are regarded as a set of tools that players use to defeat the opposing team. The key to being successful at Overwatch is to know how to use these tools and, even more importantly, when.

There are 21 characters in Overwatch, all with their own unique skills and special abilities. These characters are split into four different types: offence, defence, tank and support. This categorisation aids players when they are trying to create a team that is reasonably balanced in order to increase their likelihood of success. A balanced team, however, is not always ideal as it is common for the theatre of battle to change quite drastically, forcing the hand of the players to take significant levels of risk to overcome what initially appears to be impossible odds.

Each character has their own part to play in the theatre as the engagements play out and players must be familiar with what that role is and how to exploit it as much as possible. This can only be done by repeated play, which leads to significant skill increase on the part of the player. Prowess on the battlefield is constantly rewarded by Overwatch to the point where players vote who should receive the most recognition after a match is over. This encourages those who demonstrate skill as well as good team play and gamesmanship to continue to do so.

Matches last 5-10 minutes and are very fast paced. Decisions have to be made very quickly and attacks must be dealt with swiftly else there is a very good chance of becoming overwhelmed by a barrage of bullets, arrows, grenades and rockets. There are primary and secondary attacks, the latter normally has a cool down as it is more powerful - typically, but not always. The character Bastion, for example, simply turns into a immobile turret that can lay waste to anything within range, but is weakened by the fact that when in this mode he cannot move.

The one thing that is common to all characters is the special attack, which is triggered as players rack up kills or assist others in dispatching opponents. This ability is typically extremely powerful and lasts for a relatively short amount of time. Returning to Bastion as an example, that character turns into a mini tank that can fire explosive shells that are far more devastating than even the stationary mini-gun.

One of the most interesting aspects of Overwatch is the ability to change characters during the match. It is possible to switch even when a player is alive by simply returning to the spawn point. This enables teams to adapt their strategies on the fly by changing their team roster to turn the tide of the battle.

Overwatch is squarely a multiplayer game, promising hours and hours of play for those who get involved. With that in mind, Blizzard is promising to support Overwatch long after its launch with new characters and maps offered completely free!

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Overwatch (Xbox One) Artwork

News & Editorial

Overwatch Preview

15 Apr 2016