Blizzard Announces First New IP in 17 Years: Overwatch
And it's most definitely not what anyone was expecting from the developer of fantastical worlds seen in World of Warcraft and the Starcraft universe. The basic premise is this: in Earth's near future, an organization dedicated to protecting the world and populace from evil, dubbed "Overwatch," generally have done a pretty alright job, but were disbanded some time ago. Now, soldiers on both sides fight as mercenaries, for...some reason or another. We're not exactly privy to all of the details, but the game itself is a highly stylized first-person shooter, with each mercenary falling into a distinct "class," and they all have different abilities and playstyles that should suit each player's preferences as they attempt to capture territory and eliminate the other team.
If it all sounds and looks like a wonderful blend of games such as Team Fortress 2, Brink, and any sort of MOBA on the market today, you'd be spot on. Blizzard has long since been known for taking many elements from existing games, adding their own company flair, and pushing out a product that is genuinely good, intending to improve on the established formula. And, with the official cancellation of the Titan MMO, followed now by speculation that Overwatch has also taken elements from it in an attempt to salvage some of the art assets, means that the team likely has had this planned for quite some time.
Even so, with a company such as Blizzard, it seems that a more than a few people, on Reddit, Twitter, and beyond, were wishing for something a little bit more substantive than another first-person shooter. Granted, a near-future Earth setting doesn't mean that all sorts of rules can just be thrown out the window, but a lot of people, myself included, were skeptical of Hearthstone when it was announced as well, and yet, it seems to have quite the established playerbase now, attracting tens of thousands of voyeurs on Twitch for the world championship earlier this week. Regardless, a beta for the game is planned for sometime early next year, and it's sure to bring with it quite a lot of anticipation.