Release Date: October 27, 2015
Platform Played On: PS4/PC
2018 Placement: #27 (-52)
What It Is:
A hero-based shooter that took the world by storm and created a lot of, ahem, fan art. Overwatch is known for each character having a unique weapon and play style, from Mei’s freezing and ice walls to Hanzo’s arrows and dragonstrike. But each character also has a vibrant personality through both design and voice acting making the game one of the most talked about new multiplayer releases for a long while: eventually spawning the Overwatch League as a professional e-sport league attempting to create local town support for their teams.
The game itself is a 6v6 objective-based first-person shooter, where there’s an Attacking and Defending team either trying to escort a payload to a destination or taking/defending a specific point on the map. It requires a lot of teamwork to execute between managing your own ability cooldowns, syncing up with teammates’ abilities, and guessing at what the other team has lined up to compete against you. Between the DPS, Tank, and Support roles there’s something for everybody to play as even if you aren’t a particular crack shot with aiming.
Why It’s Important To Me:
I spent an ungodly amount of time playing Overwatch on PS4 with a group of online friends. I participating in six-person stacks nearly every night for a while, playing with people from a forum I visited at the time. It was the most I ever got into an online multiplayer game: usually my online experience is mostly co-op with friends I already know, and I stay away from shooters because I’m just bad at them. But the Tank and Support roles were up my alley; I could play with a group and affect the match without having to worry about my K/D ratio and the world was so vibrant that it instantly captivated me. I also loved how unique the heroes and abilities were: that’s what really separated this from a regular shooter.
I also got extremely into the Overwatch League once it began. I’ve never been an e-sports fan and rarely watched any competitive matches of any other game, but for the first two seasons of OWL I was glued to my computer watching every game I could on Twitch. I watched more Overwatch than normal sports and became a huge fan of the LA Gladiators and Washington Justice, to the point that I own merch for both of them. I love discussing teams and players and OWL matches online with people and it just makes me excited to watch matches live – I get into it as much as I would the Super Bowl.
My Strongest Memory:
I went to see the Washington Justice play live at their two-day Homestand in February 2020, not knowing at the time it would be one of the last outings I participated in for over a year. It was actually exhilarating to experience the match live with the crowd of fans getting into the game being played on the screen in front of them. The weekend we did it, me and HarveyZ both agreed that two full days of Overwatch was a little much but looking back it was absolutely worth seeing it live and getting to experience the rush first-hand: especially since many other teams’ Homestands were cancelled due to COVID.
As for a specific memory of playing the game, I don’t really have one. I have a fondness for the PS4 crew (that I don’t play with anymore since I switched to PC and mostly just dabble around in it now) and the good times I had playing online with them. I could tell you about how excited I got every time I unlocked a new trophy on PS4 after pulling off a new skill with a new character, because every time I got one of those (and I got nearly all of them) I was so proud of myself. I’m especially proud of finally achieving the Lucio’s The Floor Is Lava trophy, although Reaper’s Waste Not, Want Not still eludes me.
Why It’s #69 (Nice):
I have a rocky relationship with Overwatch. I want to love it a lot more than I currently do. I’m still excited for Overwatch League and enjoy watching other people play it. But every time I log onto it by myself I play a few matches and realize how much fun I’m not having. If you don’t have a squad and aren’t playing with other people, the game is toxic and unbearable, especially at lower skill levels. Teammates don’t try to listen or work together, everyone thinks they’re the best at the game and don’t try to improve their own abilities, and mistakes are met with yelling and toxicity. The balance of the game also fluctuates wildly and because the team is working on Overwatch 2, there hasn’t been any significant content updates for over a year. That’s why Overwatch has the single biggest drop in the top 100 from the last time I did this. But I still love the game despite all the mess, will watch OWL when it starts in April and I’ll definitely be jumping into OW2 when it comes out.
(But also, fuck Bobby Kotick.)