Xbox One Review: Overwatch

Blizzard enters the MOBA FPS arena, but can it take on Battleborn?

Overwatch comes out at a curious time. The beta came out when Battleborn launched, while the main game came out a few weeks after to leave a definite impression on gamers. Having now had dedicated a lot of hours to both, I finally can render my verdict on both Overwatch and the MOBA FPS champion, if there is one…
Overwatch follows the traditional MOBA layout with multiple characters to choose from, each with individual abilities that are essential in battle. One curious thing is that each match begins with each time in their own confined area for a whole minute before being unleashed on to the rest of the map, this gives you time to plan tactics before commencing your attack or defence. Matches are limited at the moment to only a few modes, but more are planned to come through updates.

If you’ve ever played Team Fortress, then things will feel familiar here. My only gripe with Overwatch is that despite all the lore that has been released for the game, there’s no story mode/co-op mode other than just playing against AI opponents while training yourself for the game. I would have thought with such an impressive roster of characters and tons of lore, that they would have done so. It feels like a missed opportunity.
It will take a while to find your own preferred character, especially since they are all so unique in design and with their abilities. The maps themselves are pretty big and look stunning, Blizzard have done a great job in creating these and I hope more is to come. It definitely feels lacking in content, but it’s not lacking in charm or it’s competitive edge. Compared to Battleborn, Overwatch feels like more of a polished MOBA, but obviously it doesn’t have any story missions, while Battleborn does.

Like I said in my Battleborn review, I hope there is enough room for two MOBA shooters…even if releasing them one after the other is a risky move for either one. They both appeal to MOBA fans and FPS fans, while retaining their own identity. It’s hard to pick which one will be the most successful at the end of the day, my money would go on Blizzard just because of their track history…but I wouldn’t rule out Gearbox’s out of the running.

Visually, Overwatch looks amazing. It has that distinct anime look, while running smoothly throughout. The maps are well designed and the game’s menus are easy to navigate. Voice-acting isn’t half as cheesy and repetitive as Battleborn’s either, so that’s always a plus.

The Verdict

It may be too early to tell, but I think Overwatch has the edge over it’s competitor. It may be light on content right now, but I can see things only getting better. I do hope there is enough room for both shooters though, because they each appeal to a different type of gamer…but Blizzard has an amazing track record when it comes to MOBA and online in general…you know you’ll always be in safe hands with them.

Score: 9.0