Overwatch’s Animated Short Could Reveal More Than a Backstory

In the modern-day and age, marketing materials make a game as much as the actual game itself. Some companies have learnt from this and Blizzard are no exception with the release of their latest animated short film showing us a little bit of story and a teaser of what’s to come. The animated short, titled Recall follows the story of Winston, the super-intelligent gorilla.

The animated short contains not just Winston but also Reaper, a crowd favourite thanks to his dark shotgun’s and teleporting abilities. Winston, on the other hand, is all about his technology, with his main weapon the Tesla Cannon showing enemies a good time while his jetpack and “barrier projector” (let’s call it a shield) all debuting in the short alongside the “primal rage”.

The short includes more than meets the eye on the first pass. With a screen showing a list of Overwatch members, 14 of which we haven’t seen since the early concept art was revealed for the game. With the game set to release in May, will we see more characters before then or will we have to wait for till after its release to start enjoying some of the characters that have been promised to players (at no extra cost we might add)?

Have you played Overwatch? Are you excited and who do you think should get a short film next? Until then we will leave you with the Cinematic trailer for the game

Jeff Kaplan Would Do the Overwatch Beta Differently Next Time

People love their betas these days, with the ability to quickly roll out a game through the internet companies have been able to test their games across the board with people developing everything from large-scale MMO projects to your favourite racing game with a test run before its release. The problem is that with that new approach to beta’s, opinions have changed about what this means, something Overwatch’s game director Jeff Kaplan has now experienced first hand.

In the interview, Kaplan reminded us that the last time he had a game go into a public beta was the Wrath of the Lich King, the popular expansion for World of Warcraft, all the way back in 2008. Kaplan states that “I think what’s happened over the past decade is that the word beta has really changed what it means. Betas are now free public demos of nearly complete products”, something which is hard to disagree with. When you get released a beta, you expect that the game has some nice features and plays smoothly, with the next step being a full commercial release.

These comments come after people claim that the Overwatch beta was little more than a “marketing beta” with only streamers and the press granted access in order to sell the game. Kaplan’s response to these comments is that with hindsight, he would have just made to the current release an Alpha and then put it all under an NDA.

While these comments probably come from fans who weren’t given access, the feedback has been rather vocal regarding the Overwatch access, which could be in part due to the timeline fans are having to wait before they can play the game. With the closed beta starting in October 2015, and the announcement trailer first showing us the world of Overwatch back in November 2014, the game has had a long wait.

Blizzard and Razer Reveal Official Overwatch Gaming Gear


If the news of the new Razer Chroma Naga Chroma 12-button MMO gaming mouse wasn’t enough for you today, then you will also be pleased to hear that Razer has joined forces with Blizzard Entertainment to release a set of officially licensed Overwatch gaming gear!

Blizzards new 6v6 first-person shooter looks set to take the competitive gaming world by storm, which means there will be demand for some equally action packed peripherals. The new range of Razer hardware comes fully equipped with the Razer Chroma RGB lighting engine, adding the ever popular BlackWidow keyboard, DeadAdder gaming mouse and the Goliathus Extended Mouse Mat, all kitted out with a kick-ass Overwatch theme.

“Overwatch is one of the most sought-after titles out there and it’s a blast to play,” says Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder and CEO. “We’re excited to bring Blizzard players, our own fans, and PC gamers everywhere the preferred FPS peripherals of eSports athletes from world-leading teams. Clad in a custom-designed theme and with in-game Chroma lighting effects created by Blizzard specifically for the keyboard and mouse, these peripherals add another layer of immersion to the Overwatch experience.”

Not only that, but the Chroma API has been tweaked too, allowing Overwatch to offer up dynamic lighting effects and changes based on the in-game action. Actions such as your heroes colour, cooldowns, Ultimate ability readiness and more can be represented directly on the peripherals lighting system.

“We’re excited to be working with Razer to bring Overwatch players and FPS fans a line of high-quality gear to take into battle,” said Matt Beecher, vice president of global consumer products at Blizzard Entertainment. “The development team has come up with some cool ways to integrate Overwatch’s gameplay with Razer’s technology, giving Blizzard gamers a whole new way to customize their experience.”

The release date isn’t known yet, but I expect it will be very soon to catch the Christmas rush. Prices are detailed below.

  • DeathAdder Chroma Overwatch: $79.99/99.99EUR
  • BlackWidow Chroma Overwatch: $179.99/219.99EUR
  • Goliathus Extended Overwatch: $34.99/42.99EUR

Overwatch Pricing Model Announced

The information from Blizzcon just keeps flowing. Hot on the heels of new Overwatch heroes being revealed, an interview with the director of Overwatch, Jeff Kaplan brought Blizzard’s future plans for the game and the Overwatch pricing model to light.

The full notes of the Q&A session conducted by members of the Overwatch subreddit can be found here, and cover a number of topics regarding the game. And while many people’s hopes that Blizzard would use the free-to-play model for Overwatch were dashed as Blizzard opened pre-orders for the game yesterday, the topics of new heroes, potential DLC and microtransactions have been subject to mass speculation.

Firstly is the now-obvious bar to entry for Overwatch, the initial price. The base game itself starts at £29.99 for the standard edition, £39.99 for the Origin edition, featuring exclusive skins and unlocks in other Blizzard games and the currently unpriced Collector’s Edition. This physical release features a statue of hero “Soldier 76”, an artbook, soundtrack and the digital bonuses from the Origin edition. Unfortunately for those yet to get into the beta, pre-ordering Overwatch at any level will not grant you access to the beta.

For those willing to purchase the game, all of the current heroes will be available out of the gate at launch, with no intentions of including a ‘hero store’ using either real or in-game currency. It is also currently uncertain as to whether new heroes will be added at all, let alone whether they will have a price attached, instead wishing to wait for community feedback on the state of the game. All this just leaves one real concern in my mind: cosmetics. The Overwatch team are supposedly working on a third version of a progression system that may tie into the cosmetics, hopefully hinting at them being available through play. That just leaves skins up to debate, as all of the currently known skins are paid for, albeit through pre-ordering the game or purchasing the Origin Edition.

I think for many of us now, desire to get into the beta has grown, as it’s no longer just about playing the game early, but a chance to see whether the game is worth Blizzard’s asking price. Are you pleased that Blizzard seem to be avoiding the now-common freemium or pay-to-win models, or are you put off at having an upfront cost when other similar games such as Team Fortress 2 are now free?

Overwatch Reveals Three New Characters

Overwatch has been a keenly anticipated game that was recently released in closed beta for PC. With a wide variety of characters available at the moment and more being announced all the time, it’s not hard to see how the multiplayer arena game could soon see you staring at your screen for hours.

First up in the new characters is titled Mei and seems in part inspired by Mr Freeze. With a fluffy coat and large framed glasses, Mei’s unique attribute is that she is (surprise surprise) an ice type attacker, with her primary allowing you to slow and eventually freeze enemies before piercing them with her secondary attack. With the ability to summon ice walls to protect her allies and grant them access to hard to reach places, while her ultimate, Blizzard, will not only freeze but decimate an area of enemies; given her three seconds of invincibility, she can become a quite deadly defender.

Next up is D.vva, a meka pilot with fusion cannons that can be continuously fired at the cost of a slower movement speed. If that wasn’t bad enough her boosters grant her limited flight that can be used to fly around and bring destruction to anyone she sees fit. Built as a tank with a protecting wall against incoming projectiles her ultimate is a last resort, granting her access to the self-destruct matrix on her mech, after leaving it and repositioning just in time to call down her next suit.

Finally we have Genji, the cyber ninja. Left for dead by his brother Hanzo, overwatch brought the ninja into the fold after patching up with cybernetics. With the ability to throw shurikens in a steady line or a sprayed out collection, coupled with his ability to double jump and scale walls, you could soon see a white ninja sweeping down on your team with devastating effects. The high mobility continues with his dash which also inflicts bleeding damage, making his approach all that more terrifying while his reflect ability will protect his approach. While his ultimate will enchant his sword, bringing out both mystic power and cyber technology to a deadly cumulation.

Overwatch May Have Accidentally Been Revealed For Consoles

Blizzard has a large catalogue of games, ranging from the hugely successful World of Warcraft (soon to include an expansion pack named Legion) and the latest to the multiplayer online battle arena games (MOBA) Heroes of the Storm. The latest game to be revealed by Blizzard is titled Overwatch and will feature first-person shooter action in objective based arenas. What this means is that you may be running around shooting but your team will always have an objective. While initially slated for release on PC and with a beta coming later this month, it may not be that long until we see it on consoles thanks to some eagle-eyed website browsers.

Spotted by some users and then posted on Twitter, the users noticed that the description meta tag for the website detailed not only it being a team shooter but that it was also for “PC and consoles”.

It may not be that long before we see the game announced for consoles, but that is not to say that PC players will suffer because of this. Blizzard has a history of bringing games to consoles which were first released on PC, such as the hugely successful RPG Diablo 3.

Would you prefer to play Overwatch on your PC or your console? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.

Blizzards ‘Overwatch’ Beta Details Revealed

Blizzard has a long line of video games in its resume, from the Warcraft series to Diablo and StarCraft, they are remembered for a wide range of characters and settings. Most recently they pushed into the multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) scene with their Heroes of the Storm. Featuring characters from all their games and a focus on objectives throughout several very different maps it has been well accepted by the public and Blizzard hope to repeat that success with their latest game idea, Overwatch.

Online FPS shooter, Overwatch, will see two teams of heroes and villains fight for control at command points and use the same objective based gameplay that made heroes of the storm popular, encouraging teamwork and consistent combat throughout. The latest on Overwatch though is good news for some and less for others.

October 27th is the official date for the start of the Beta but if you are eager to get into the game there are a few things you should be aware of.
First up the location, at the start the Beta test will only be available in America, with the rest of the world joining in at a later date (a similar release model was followed by some of their previous games). Secondly the beta testing will be broken into two groups, their core and beta weekend groups.

The core group will be responsible for the majority of the testing and will have access to the game for testing every day. This will be their core testing group, with large groups of users being invited to participate in their beta weekends for testing out just how well the game will handle with thousands of players.

Thank you Blizzard for the information.

Blizzard Tease New FPS Named Overwatch

Well, if that cinematic hasn’t already blown you away or tugged on some heart-strings – maybe what you’re about to read will.

There’s no denying that Blizzard are kings when it comes to the trailer department, the video you’ve just watched is yet another installment in a long history of wonderful cinematic experiences – but what does that say for actual game play?

Announced during the opening day of Blizzcon, Overwatch is set to be a competitive team-based FPS based around capturing control points as your main objective. As you’ve just witnessed, it’s going to be set up at a kind of hero vs. villain style game with extremely different versatility and abilities throughout each class. You can jump into play as a giant intelligent ape, a sentry turret transforming robot or something a little more sneaky. Many have likened the games basic attributes to that of Team Fortress 2, but in true blizzard fashion this game seems to be focused heavily around ‘heroes’ with different abilities, styling and personalities.

Unfortunately, there’s no set release date for the BETA as of yet, all we’ve been told is to expect it some time in 2015. It’s also interesting to note the ‘Pixtar’ style graphics depicted in the video above, something fairly different to your usual Blizzard-esque release. Don’t let the graphics fool you though, it’s not often (or ever) that Blizzard make a bad game.

Overwatch is available for play at Blizzcon on 600 computers, therefore people have been posting hands-on experiences throughout social media and snippets on YouTube – expect to see much more in the following days.

We haven’t seen word as to if this game will be released as free-to-play, but it wouldn’t be too surprising given the current trend of free games. However, we haven’t seen Blizzard be too interested in adopting this position as of yet – so we’re interested to see what path they go down.

In the end, I think we can expect Overwatch to be a rather fun shoot ’em up style game – but it’s being labeled as a competitive title by most. How will it fare? We need the BETA to truly tell.

Image courtesy of NDTV Gadgets