Blizzard Announces its First New IP in 17 Years

Blizzard Announces its First New IP in 17 Years

During this year’s BlizzCon, which occurred over last weekend, Blizzard Entertainment revealed its first new IP in 17 years, adding to its already established Warcraft , StarCraft and Diablo franchises. In front of over 25,000 people who attended BlizzCon in person, as well as those watched the event via livestreams, Blizzard revealed Overwatch , a game that’s described as a pick-up-and-play first-person shooter that features its own cast of characters and its very own universe in Blizzard’s catalog.

Set during a technologically advanced, highly stylised period of time in the future, Overwatch is about an international task force consisting of soldiers, scientists, adventurers and other professions (and even an anthropomorphised ape) banding together to restore peace to a war-torn Earth, known as the Overwatch. Over the course of many years, however, the Overwatch’s reputation deteriorated and eventually the group disbanded. With that being said, there’s still always room for heroes, and whilst the group is no longer officially a thing, they still work together keep the peace.

According to a press release, Overwatch emphasises accessibility and pure fun, with easy-to-learn, hard-to-master gameplay. Equipping yourself with the inherent abilities available with each individual hero (or villain), you and five other players will team up in a group of six against an opposing team, and duke it out across futuristic global locations, from the hologram-lit streets of London to the shadows of a high-tech Egyptian pyramid. Each map is touted to highlight each character’s abilities, allowing for combat to take place in a variety of different ways, including taking the fight to and from the streets, the rooftop and the open skies.

Overwatch is our take on a vibrant, near-future universe with amped-up characters and action-packed team-based gameplay, ” said Blizzard’s CEO and co-founder, Mike Morhaime. “ With every new Blizzard game, we look at our favorite aspects of a genre and put our own spin on things. Our goal with Overwatch is to create an awesome FPS experience that’s more accessible to a much wider audience while delivering the action and depth that shooter fans love.

Below is a list of some of the heroes you’ll be able to play as in Overwatch , each of which have their distinct weapons and abilities, courtesy of the press release.

  • Tracer , a former British test pilot who shrugs at danger, can execute impossible acrobatic assaults thanks to her ability to teleport, drop energy bombs, and even reverse time.

  • Reinhardt , a hulking German soldier in battle armor, can charge great distances and pin his enemies to a wall or slam the ground with his rocket hammer to knock them off their feet.

  • Hanzo , a bow-wielding Japanese mercenary, has the ability to scale walls with his bare hands, fire off a tracking device that illuminates nearby enemies for his team, and unleash a huge spirit dragon that does grievous damage to all enemies in its path.

  • Symmetra , an Indian architech, manipulates light and energy to shield her allies and damage her enemies—and she can turn the tide of any battle by building a device that instantly transports her teammates to the front lines.

Even though each hero is a formidable force on their own, it’s advised to play together as a group in a well-balanced team to amplify each other’s abilities. It’s touted that Overwatch will allow for you to team up and accomplish great feats no matter which hero you choose of what playstyle you prefer.

New heroes and maps will continually be added to Overwatch as its development progresses, and it will begin Beta testing as early as 2015. We’ll bring you more news on Overwatch should further information reach our ears.

[ Press release ]

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