Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Video Game Review: Overwatch

A couple weeks ago, a friend of mine picked up Overwatch for the Playstation 4. He'd played the open beta and said it was a lot of fun, but because I had other responsibilities, I missed that opportunity. The game got me pretty excited, just based on the concept, and I really wanted to check it out before I bought it. So when he BOUGHT the game, I jumped at the chance to try it out at his place.

The next weekend, I bought the game for myself. Now, as many of my friend may imagine, I'm a HUGE Fallout fan (well, the console games that came out since Bethesda took over the franchise). And I'd been playing my way through the Fallout 4 expansions pretty much non-stop. There's a lot of ground to cover in that game, and I was fairly confident it would be the ONLY game I needed this year (since I can't devote much of my time to gaming these days).

But Overwatch pushed Fallout 4 out of my gaming routine. Over this last weekend, I played at LEAST five hours a day for three days. Probably more. And there's a simple reason why: it's a TON of fun.

I'm not the best First Person Shooter player. I never have been (though I got pretty good at Battlefield: Bad Company 2 for a little while). The thing about Overwatch, though, is that you don't have to be great at ALL styles of FPS play to actually do a good job in the game. They set up the system with so many different heroes, spread across four different hero TYPES, that there's a good chance that any player (who enjoys FPSs) will be able to achieve some kind of success if they play as PART OF A TEAM. Like previous games of this type, I'm not the best player. I HAVE been awarded "Play of the Game" a couple of times, but in competitive mode, I'm currently skill-ranked at 45 (on a scale of 1-100). Slightly below average (granted, some of that is due to teammates who go off and do their own thing rather than working as a unit, but that's only a small part of my ranking).

What Overwatch gives me, though, is a chance to play a high-excitement game without forcing me to commit two or more hours to my game-day. I can jump into a Quick Play match and be done in under 15 minutes, then go on my way and have a fun evening doing something else.

The visuals are amazing, too. It's bright, colorful, and looks FUN. Like collectable figurines who move and talk.

I could go on and on about this game, explaining every reason why it's my current gaming focus. The fact is, it has my attention, keeps me entertained and excited as a player, and only gives me ONE thing to complain about: players who refuse to work as a team and instead "insist" on playing their own way, even (and especially when) that method is failing to such an epic degree that it makes me want to quit (though there are penalties for that, so I never do).

Overwatch consumed Giles in this last three-day weekend. He'd consider playing more during the week if he didn't have other commitments that he is eager to fulfill. Lucky for him, he was instilled with a work ethic. Though he's almost ready to chuck it and just play that game until he's so bored, he has no other CHOICE but to return to his commitments.

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