Blizzard announced an entirely new game at their latest Blizzcon extravaganza.
This won’t be a game based off their existing brands like almost every other game they’ve released. Warcraft to Starcraft, Warcraft to WoW, WoW to Hearthstone, and Everything to Heroes of the Storm making Warcraft and Diablo the only truly original games they’ve made.
The new game is a first person shooter called Overwatch set in the near future. The animation style is similar to Team Fortress 2 and Disney’s Incredibles.
I said Incredibles because the FPS has characters that you choose to play before each match and each character has a set of super abilities they can use during the match.
The super powers are simple enough. One person can teleport, another can fly, another one can create a big energy shield, etc.
So why be excited about this? I haven’t played a true FPS in over half decade, why do I care?
Well first of all, Blizzard has a very successful track record with their games. If they release an FPS its likely that it will perform well and attract a lot of people to the genre from other Blizzard games as well as increasing competition in the FPS field.
Second, Blizzard is branching out! Like I said, they haven’t come out with a truly original game in over twenty years. Are they too rusty to do well in a market without a pre-established fanbase? I don’t know.
It’s entirely possible that Overwatch will flop because Blizzard doesn’t know jackshit about what people want from FPS games. I doubt that will happen as Blizzard has enough money to attract designers who will prevent that from happening. It’s unlikely that Overwatch will fail, but will it succeed?
At this point… Hard to say. The game doesn’t offer any new mechanics. Everything the characters can do I’ve seen in other FPS games. The setting isn’t really new either. Its a cross between Team Fortress 2’s animation style and the futuristic setting of Halo (maybe a little bit less techy than Halo, but close).
But is there any FPS that’s really unique? Mount and Blade to some extent, but its so different from most FPS games that it falls into the realm of simulation games.
Halo wasn’t unique when it came out. Doom and Goldeneye both had the same weapon swapping and ammo systems. But Halo was massively successful. It was one of the first games you could talk about at school without having to be embarrassed that you were a gamer.
Will Overwatch reach that same level of success where gamer society embraces it? Maybe, but I doubt it.
Either way, “The cavalry’s here, luvs!”