PAX East 2016: Overwatch Looks and Plays Perfectly Polished

overwatch, all characters

Looks like Blizzard is ready to launch.

With the multiplayer shooter genre becoming more and more common, Blizzard’s newest and upcoming game Overwatch strives to be about more than just K/D ratios and killstreaks. The vibrant game puts most of its focus on its character variation and team strategy gameplay, and to noticeable success.

Overwatch’s gameplay is primarily focused on working together, and with a large variety of playable characters to choose from, it feels an entirely different experience each time you step into a new fighter. At this year’s PAX East, there was a slew of characters to choose from, but most of my time was spent with the quick and swift Tracer and the defense-focused Junkrat. My mission was to capture an area and hold it down for as long as possible, but unlike similar modes, such as Call of Duty’s Domination, there was little run-and-gun gameplay. This meant victory relied on a good balance of offensive and defensive characters.

Tracer and Junkrat represent totally different worlds of play. Tracer, an offensive character, can be used for attacking enemies and grabbing the flag. With her dual pistols and blink ability, it was pretty convenient to zip around the map and pick off enemies without anyone noticing.

tracer, overwatch

Junkrat, on the other hand, focuses on protection; he’s equipped with a frag launcher as his primary weapon, which has a pretty decent range, and concussion mines used for guarding an area. Finally, his steel traps keep an enemy immobile and defenseless, lending teammates the perfect opportunity to take them out.

overwatch, preview, junkrat

In my time with Tracer, I was always on the offensive, hastily attacking enemies and always focused on the objective. As Junkrat, I found myself depending on my teammates to capture points, after which I could lock down the area, laying down traps and setting up mines to protect what my allies had claimed. The differences between just these two characters completely flipped my playstyle and even attitude in my matches, and with so many personalities on the Overwatch roster, there’s sure to be plenty of diversity upon release.

As the two rounds concluded, I couldn’t help but realize that the game seemed very polished. The graphics were beautiful and the frames were holding up a solid 60 FPS on consoles and PC. With the game expected to launch in just a couple of weeks, it feels as though Overwatch is in a very good place. Now we just have to patiently for the release date on May 24.

What do think about Overwatch? Do you think it can compete against some of the bigger titles that are releasing during the month of May? Will you be picking this game up? Let us know in the comments below.

To Top