After playing a few rounds of Overwatch, you may be struck by how deceptively simple the whole thing appears. But know that this FPS is a remarkably complex team-based shooter teaming with character, style and intense action. There's a lot going on behind the scenes and a great deal of history and lore for fans to uncover. So let's take a look at some of the most fascinating aspects of Blizzard's latest masterpiece.
45 Facts Fans Should Know About Overwatch
- 1. When Overwatch was revealed at Blizzcon 2014, it was Blizzard's first new IP in 17 years.
- 2. Overwatch was originally the name of an elite group of soldiers in Blizzard's failed MMO, Titan. After they stopped developing it they took the Overwatch name and created a whole new idea based on this group. Characters like Tracer have actually survived the cancellation of Titan and live on in Blizzard's online FPS.
- 3. The robotic beings in Overwatch are known as Omnics, which were created inside of factories known as Omniums. However, the robots eventually went rogue and these factories began to create robotic entities designed to bring about the end of mankind.
- 4. The Overwatch task force was created by the United Nations in order to combat the robotic uprising, which was known as the Omnic Crisis.
- 5. In its prime, Overwatch featured over 100 characters in its task force, how many of them do you think we'll see in the game over the years?
- 6. Every character in Overwatch has their own individual sound effect accompanying their footsteps. This way you'll be able to hear what kind of enemy was about to come around the corner. Except for Zenyatta, he hovers silently...
- 7. One of the main complaints that Blizzard had about their failed MMO, Titan, was that it simply wasn't any fun to actually play. Therefore, the mantra for Overwatch was prioritize fun gameplay. One of the impacts of this decision is the game's lack of ammo. Who wants to run around and pick up ammo for their characters? Seeing as Blizzard found this boring, that's why you have an unlimited supply in Overwatch.
- 8. Tracer was considered to be a living ghost. She suffered from a condition known as chronal-disassociation which de-synchronizes her molecules from the flow of time. She had no control over this, until her friend Winston created a device that anchors her in the present while allowing her to control this disassociation, thus creating her own timeline, jumping back and forth at will.
- 9. Reaper doesn't reload his weapons, he has an infinite supply of them in his coat and simply drops those which are empty. What a waste!
- 10. In Overwatch's cinematic trailer, Reaper used a grenade launcher against Winston. This has been cut from the base game.
11. There's a reason as to why Widowmaker is purple. She worked for a mercenary group called Talon who altered her physiology, slowing her heart rate and causing her skin to cool and turn the color you see in the image above.
- 12. In the original ability video preview, Widowmaker had a "model error" (my ass) that increased the size of her butt once her ability was activated. Thankfully it was removed.
- 13. Winston is a big fan of Shakespeare and you'll actually hear him quote the man himself during battles: "Once more unto the breach."
- 14. Bastion is just one model of a robot that was produced on mass in Omniums. However, he's a little different on the inside in comparison to the thousands of others; after all he has an unrivaled fondness for nature.
- 15. In the alpha, Bastion had a different Ultimate. He actually threw out a little sentry bot which could drive around the map like an RC car and be activated by the player within a certain time frame. Once activated it would unleash a barrage of bullets all around it. Ultimately, Blizzard didn't think it fit his playstyle, so instead went with his tank mode that we all know so well.
- 16. Bastion's tiny yellow bird friend is named Ganymede, who was a beautiful young boy from Greek mythology.
- 17. Hanzo and Genji were once the same character during production. However, Blizzard gave Hanzo far too many ninja abilities that they liked, so they decided to split him with a new character. This eventually became Genji, who is also Hanzo's brother.
- 18. One of Hanzo's lines that you can unlock sees him say, "I choose you, Spirit Dragon." This is a reference to Pokemon and Ash's famous, "Pikachu, I choose you!"
- 19. Torbjörn was the first character to be modeled with the game's beautiful engine.
- 20. Zenyatta is an omnic and part of a group of robots that consider themselves equal to humanity. People even date these robots!
- 21. The youngest Overwatch agent is D. VA, who's 19. The oldest, at 61, is the German giant Reinhardt.
- 22. On the map King's Row, the attacking team is tasked with escorting a payload to the other side of the map and you're given no explanation as to why. However, at the Overwatch panel at Blizzcon 2014, they revealed that you're escorting an EMP that's set to take down a group of omnics living beneath the city streets of London.
- 23. There are several easter eggs within the game that reference Blizzard's other IPs, like World of Warcraft, Diablo and Starcraft. You can check them all out here.
- 24. In Overwatch's arcade, you'll find a poster of D. Va on one of the walls. However, she wasn't actually revealed until a year after the map was shown at Blizzcon. Keep an eye out on all of those maps to see if you can uncover who Overwatch's next character will be.
- 25. There are newspapers blowing in the wind on the maps Temple of Anubis and King's Row. On the cover of these newspapers you can read about the rampages that a character known as Roadhog had unleashed on the world. He wasn't revealed as a playable character until months after these were spotted.
- 26. Blizzard released tons of documents that presented 360 models of all of the game's characters, their props and outfits. This was done in order to help artists and cosplayers bring these characters to life in their own ways.
- 27. Blizzard spent hours everyday playing Overwatch and they've already held several internal tournaments.
- 28. Mei's robotic companion is nicknamed Snowball. How cute!
- 29. Overwatch was originally planned to release in early 2015, however its official release was delayed until later that year, and eventually to May 24, 2016. It's undergone a substantial degree of alterations thanks to feedback from betas.
- 30. Zarya sometimes says, "Credit to team" which is a line used by the Heavy character in Team Fortress 2. Nice little nod to the master of this genre.
- 31. Zarya is based off of a Blizzard employee named Tamara, who's actually from Russia! She's a character designer and you can check out the similarities over here.
- 32. Jesse McCree has the same name as a Blizzard employee. Unfortunately he's not a cowboy, but he does rock an incredible beard.
- 33. When McCree activates his Ultimate, Dead Eye, a tumbleweed rolls by every team. Nice touch.
- 34. Genji has been through a lot. Hanzo left him to die, Mercy saved his life and Zenyatta saved Genji's soul. He's a bit screwed up under all of that armor, but a damn cool guy!
- 35. Soldier: 76 is based off of a roommate that the game's director had in college.
- 36. Lucio, the Brazilian DJ and arguably the most OP character in the game, was originally revealed at Gamescom 2015 in Germany. However, the reveal began with Blizzard releasing two techno tracks from one of his albums. You can download these two songs from the official Overwatch soundcloud account and they're actually played by Lucio in-game.
- 37. In Numbani, there is a board of arrivals and departures for various locations around the world. These are the locals for Blizzard and Activision headquarters.
- 38. When Blizzard permitted beta testers to start streaming Overwatch on Twitch, it became the most watched game on that day with over 25,000 viewers.
- 39. D. Va is a gamer within the world of Overwatch, she's even a professional Starcraft II player in Korea.
- 40. Volskaya Industries has a great little easter egg for those that like to stare off into the distance. Take a look at the city and the giant mech robots patrolling it and eventually you'll get to see this happen:
41. D. Va references many phrases popular amongst Starcraft fans such as "GG" and "APM," or "actions per minute."
42. There's a chance that, when waiting for a match to start, Lucio and D. Va could ask for one another's autographs.
43. The payload on Hollywood is the limo of famous director, Halfred Glitchbot. This name was aimed to be a play on famous director Alfred Hitchcock, and the fictional AI who tries to kill everyone in 2001: A Space Odyssey.
44. Blizzard initially had a problem with getting the name Overwatch for this FPS. They couldn't trademark it because another company had already developed an app with that name, which brought gaming-like elements to real-life paintball matches. After a few legal woes, Blizzard eventually secured the rights to the name Overwatch and were able to keep it for their brand new game. Wonder how much that other company was paid...
45. It's the most fun I've had with a shooter in years. Fact.
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