Overwatch Review

Well if you have any sort of connection to gaming culture, I’m sure by now you are aware of Overwatch. We here at Atebit have been playing the game and spoiler alert! We like it. But just saying we like it isn't enough to give you a proper idea of what we think about the game. So Myself and Ben decided that we would crack a few beers while cracking a few Overwatch shaped skulls, below is a pseudo joint review compiled over a few matches and more than a few brews.


Initial Impressions

Ben: I was lucky enough to get into the Beta back at the start of May, and after only managing to play for a couple of hours, I knew then and there I wanted to buy this game. Since it’s launch, I would say it has solidified its first impressions especially now that I am playing it with friends. Wouldn’t you agree Brendan?

Brendan: Totally, sadly I never ended up experiencing the Beta so I have been doing my best caged animal impression leading up to the release of Overwatch. I raced out on launch day and after much debate settled on going with Team Green. First impressions were extremely positive, 21 characters available straight out of the box? Hell F**kin Yeah! As with every Blizzard title the game is stunning, it plays fast and there is chaos literally no matter where I turn. This is love at first sight.


Gameplay

Brendan: Man oh man does Overwatch play well, controls feel tight and these short games (some coming in much less than the 5 minute timer) keep the action coming thick and fast. Diving between the 4 distinct player classes (Offence, Tank, Defence and Support) I found myself naturally leaning towards the more front line guys, Reaper, Pharah and the queen of the blink, Tracer. Once I was reasonably comfortable running DPS I transitioned to tank and have quickly found my digital soulmates in Reinhart or D.VA. The diversity not only between classes but then each character in each said class is unlike anything I’ve come across in a first person shooter, 21 unique characters, completely different than one another, all with their own strengths and weaknesses. Couple that with some rock solid servers seemingly finding me games within seconds and Blizzard is firing on all cylinders.

Ben: Oh man are you right about the characters. The diversity amongst them all is a huge selling point for trying each character at least once. I started out rocking with D.Va and have since expanded to grenadier/trapper Junkrat and healer Mercy as part of my usual rotation. I’m still yet to find a DPS character I excel at yet. As always with Blizzard games there is clearly an exceptional amount of polish in all the mechanics at play. Whether it’s walking into a room full of Bastion’s (fuck that robot!) and learning to counter him with either Genji or Widowmaker, or getting that clutch revive off with Mercy on a tank to defend the point, there is a huge amount of satisfaction experienced in the moment. Not an easy thing to pull off. My only gripe would be that there isn’t more modes to get that smug sense of self satisfaction.


Graphics

Ben: Before I get too far into the graphics I just want to say that the game just oozes smoothness on console. We at Ate Bit all play together on the Xbox One, and I don’t think I have noticed a single moment where the frame rate has dropped. And the game still looks gorgeously beautiful. Also I think it will be underrated in terms of how impressive the engine actually is. Want some bloom on your shadows from your bloom with the light rays off the special ability? Yup, Blizzard chucked it in there. Got a beefy PC? Oh boy you will be hypnotized by the sexyness that will be produced on screen. And the art style is just screaming to be turned into a Saturday morning cartoon! I seriously can’t get enough.

Brendan: Being a Blizzard title you already know it’s going to come with a certain level of polish. The artwork, trailers and general media hype painted a very clear and concise picture in my mind long before I picked up a controller. The great thing is all the smoke and mirrors that come with marketing has managed to find its way into Overwatch, each of the 12 maps all vary from one another, locales such as Greece, Japan, England and Hollywood keep the varied match types interesting with a distinct look and feel combined multiple vantage points and hazards.

Character models are brilliant, 21 characters all unique in look but somehow all fit in with each other, high attention to detail in things as simple as Bastion’s bird sidekick (I hate you Bastion, so much) the dragon scales on Hanzo’s ultimate or even the UI in D.VA’s mech suit. Blizzard have really outdone themselves with Overwatch.


Amount of Content

Ben: As I’m sure most people are aware this is strictly a multiplayer game. Essentially I would call it a FPS style MOBA, although I think Blizzard refer to it as an “Arena Shooter”. Any case besides battling AI, your very limited in the amount of content available. As many people have already said. Overwatch does one thing, and it does it very very well. With 21 characters and the possibility of others being added overtime and all the extra customisation options that can be added there will always be steady stream of content for Blizzard to provide, but given the $80 price tag, I don’t think that will be enough to satisfy some people. Also correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t it alluded to at some point that there would be a single player campaign included? Or was that just a rumour?

Brendan: I’ve certainly read that on various forums around the internet, if that’s true it will take an already killer game and further launch it into greatness. For now I feel the price tag is more than justified with the content available at launch, 21 characters, 12 maps and a few different play modes is respectable and knowing Blizzard they will be throwing their full support behind Overwatch well into the future, I’d imagine a steady flow of new characters, maps and perhaps additional modes will find their way into the game over the next 6 or so months.


Final thoughts

Brendan: Blizzard fans, Team Fortress 2 fans, first person shooter fans and gaming fans in general need to go pick this up, while you're at it drag some of your friends in game with you to share in the beautiful carnage; you won't be disappointed.

4.75 out of 5

Ben: I think you nailed it. This game is truly a sign of love and polish from the dev team at Blizzard and they are showing full intentions of making this title the greatest can be. If you’re not a fan of multiplayer only don’t expect this to change your opinion, but if you like your competitive first person shooters Overwatch is a must have.

4.5 out of 5


Brendan White

The man behind Ate Bit, part time slacker, full time dork with a love for all things pop culture. 1/3 of the infamous Hungry Gamers, destroyer of burgers and player of video games.

Find him on Xbox Live, PSN, Twitter and Instagram via @brendanatebit