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First Impressions

Posted by AndY in Feedback on 16 July 2010 · 877 views
impressions gameplay guest
The following is a guest blog post from community member Ranma:

It’s been almost a year since I was informed about Overwatch. I was given very little information about the game, but I was told this, “It will be like Sven Co-op, but in RTS style. That way, the enemies aren’t in the same place every round; you’ll never know where and when they’ll spawn.” After a year of waiting, I was finally able to try out the game and they stayed true to their word and gave me what I was expecting, in spades.

The game plays exactly as I was told. There are two teams, the Overwatch, and the Resistance. The Overwatch is the player that summons and controls the AI soldiers, while the Resistance team completes a list of objectives given to them. These objectives range from hacking computers, to destroying buildings. Playing Resistance was too fun. Being supplied with a shotgun, sub-machine gun, a pistol, and crowbar. Each member of the Resistance is packing more firepower than James Bond.

Usually, games with objectives can get a little confusing, especially for brand new players, but even this early in development the game is idiot-proof. There is a waypoint clearly shown on the screen at all times, and if that’s not enough to inform the player, there is a list of the objectives in the top right corner which shows the current objective and the next objective. So on my very first round I knew what to do, where to go, and what to expect. With this ironclad system, I doubt players will get lost on non-linear maps, and I won’t hear that bickering anymore,
“OMG u noob! go to the control room and flip the switch!”
“Where’s the control room?”
“OMG u noob!”

The AI soldiers are incredibly smart and extremely accurate. The Overwatch only needs to tell the soldiers what basic area they should be at, and they do the rest on their own! This was really good for me because I’m really not that talented at RTSs. Even a kindergartner can do a decent job as the Overwatch with the strength of the soldiers. They strafe, they dodge, and they plow bullets into your face! The soldiers really give the Resistance a challenge. At times, they can be hard to defeat, especially when they are in large numbers, but they are not invincible, which drops their difficulty setting from frustrating down to challenging. Fans of First Person Shooter games will certainly love the challenging fights brought from the AI (I know I did).

Naturally in a co-op game, working as a team is the key to victory. Sticking in a group increases the chance of surviving a skirmish and makes objectives easier to accomplish. My role in the team was to deliver support fire. I would find the high ground and rain bullets on the opponents. It actually helped the team out greatly, because this tactic helped take out soldiers before they could get in range of my teammates. The Overwatch wins if all of the Resistance team dies. This is the biggest reason for sticking together. Health is very scarce, so I was often walking around injured, side by side with another injured player, who was walking next to another injured player. When dead, the Resistance players can revive each other by holding the “use” button. It can be pretty dangerous, considering the player is completely vulnerable while reviving a fellow player. This revival system is another reason to stay close to each other. If a player is way off course and dies, it will be hard for the teammates to go out of their way to revive him. He might have to wait for the next round to play, just because he decided to go on his own. Bummer.

Playing the Overwatch for the first time took a little bit more perception than playing the Resistance, but I was still able to catch on rather quickly. I was a bit clueless on what do at first, but after 30 seconds or so I found the action points and figured out what to do. Each action has a cooldown period after usage so the Overwatch can’t summon an army of soldiers in a single minute. It takes time for the Overwatch to build an army, and in that time the Resistance can to do their objectives as well as prepare for an onslaught. Despite taking time, building an army is a very good strategy because of how formidable the AI is. Still, don’t take my word; I got owned playing the Overwatch.

The Overwatch won every time while I was playing. All except once, but that’s because I was the Overwatch (did I mention I was bad at RTS games?). Despite losing every single time, I was having a blast. I imagine this might be a problem for those incredibly competitive players that can’t have fun unless they win. The way it is now, you might be a pro player, but if you don’t work as a team, you are going to lose (unless I’m the Overwatch).

After 10 months of imagining what Overwatch would be like, I was afraid that the real game would not match what I thought the game would be like. But after playing it, the game surpassed my expectations and even shocked me with how incredible the gameplay is. A game this incredible was set up in just a year? And it’s not even finished! I can’t wait to see what kind of improvements and visual treats the developers will give us in the future.

Source: Ranma's First Impressions

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