Games of the Decade: Overwatch shows how fun lore can enrich a competitive shooter

November 26, 2019
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Overwatch is the first competitive FPS I ever played on PC. This was a mistake. It’s far too fast-paced for someone who has never used a keyboard and mouse to play games in their life, but I loved it so much I outright refused to be defeated by my poor technical skill. After playing for hundreds of hours on PS4, my brain knew exactly what it wanted to do, but my hands just couldn’t perform the actions to get me there. I’ve never felt so frustrated in my entire life, yet I persisted, because Overwatch was worth it.

In so many other popular team-based shooters you fundamentally play each class or character in the same way, with slight variation in weapons or abilities. Overwatch turns that on its head completely – every character moves differently, shoots differently and has vastly different play styles. The game has balance problems, of course, like every other FPS, but even with all this variation Overwatch still works well. No two heroes feel the same to play, and this allows players of all skill levels to find characters they understand and enjoy playing.

When I first started playing Overwatch I almost always played as McCree. This wasn’t because I particularly enjoyed the DPS play style (though his ultimate is incredibly satisfying when you get it just right), I played him because he was a futuristic cowboy. He has awesome lore, a wonderful voice actor and absolutely no reason to be dressed like that 60 years in the future.

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