Blizzard Entertainment has long been known for their marquee franchises. WarCraft, StarCraft, Diablo. They have been the company’s standards for years. Today at Blizzcon, the company announced their first new game in what seems like ages. Overwatch will be a team based multiplayer first person shooter that pits humans, robots and robo-gorillas against each other.
Blizzard showed several trailers for the game including the game’s CG opening cinematic. The trailer is so alive with character and charm that you’d think Blizzard was taking notes out of the Pixar bible.
What strikes me as different for Overwatch from traditional class based shooters is the emphasis on individual characters. With the rampant success of games like League of Legends and DotA 2, fanbases have really become attached to heroes of their own personal liking. Heroes are chosen from gaming related reasons such as multiplayer roles and mechanics to character reasons like background story and appearance. Blizzard is tapping into that idea with Overwatch, providing heroes with different tools and roles to provide in their 6 vs 6 multiplayer. While the current stable of characters is just beginning to ramp up, Blizzard promises that more heroes will be unveiled as time progresses.
Fans of the company can even catch little glimmers of the cancelled MMO Titan, which has left its impression in Overwatch in the form of architecture and themes scattered across its world.
Between Overwatch and their upcoming Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard is priming themselves well to fit into the space of competitive multiplayer games. Combined with their success in Hearthstone (which receives its first expasion next month), the revamped and improved Diablo II and the long anticipated Protoss themed expansion StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void, Blizzard is ready for a big 2015. Oh, all that and a little game called World of Warcraft.
Interested players can opt-in to the Overwatch Beta on the official website.