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Overwatch

Overwatch review

Heroic effort

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Overwatch: Sombra abilities and strategy tips

Learn how to play Overwatch's hacker

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Overwatch: Ana abilities and strategy tips

Learn how to play the support sniper

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Today

Overwatch says its bad behaviour is down by 40%, but that doesn’t tell the full story

At GDC this week, Blizzard gave a talk discussing the endorsement system that they added to Overwatch last summer, claiming that it reduced bad behaviour in the first person shooter by 40%. Huzzah! Unfortunately, even if we take Blizzard’s own numbers totally at face value, it’s that remaining 60% you’re actually going to notice playing the game and interacting with the community.

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3 days ago

Feature: Once a Dragon, always a Dragon

Know It OWL: Playoff places and some long-awaited Justice

Without the Shanghai Dragons playing this week, I thought it might finally be the week I didn’t cry at the Overwatch League. But I forgot that there was an ex-Dragon, still yet to win, continuing his losing streak on struggling expansion team Washington Justice. And thanks to Chon “Ado” Gihyeon, despite it being the final week before playoffs, it once again became one in which…

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4 days ago

Overwatch patches in Baptiste to patch you up

Blizzard today add Overwatch's thirtieth character, a combat medic by the name of Baptiste. He has the power to thwomp out healing grenades, create an "immortality field" that stops nearby pals from dying, throw down barriers that amplify friendly damage and healing passing through it... he's a medic, in combat. Baptiste has been on the public test servers for three weeks now, where he's seemed…

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1 week ago

Feature: There's always next stage, Valiant

Know It OWL: big stories, small moments

We're just a few matches away from the end of the Overwatch League’s first stage, and we're finally beginning to see which teams will make playoffs and which are truly struggling. But in between the high-level stories are the smaller moments, many of which took place outside the game itself: a kindly text from a player's mum, a motivational speech by Symmetra's voice actress Anjali…

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2 weeks ago

Feature: This post is sponsored by the gold objective time medal

Know It OWL: One weird tip for winning your Overwatch League games

Spare a thought for the Overwatch League players this week. Bamboozled and led astray by last week’s upsets, they are wandering around the maps with no regard for the fact that, and I cannot stress this enough, you have to stand on the point in Overwatch to win the game. It doesn’t matter what map type we’re talking about, they are all about objectives and…

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3 weeks ago

Feature: That'll learn ya

Smarter Than I: can an AI coach you on your Overwatch play?

I dream of a future where robots teach me how to get gud. A future where algorithms can pinpoint my every mistake, and tell me exactly how to avoid them. Software that learns as I do, offering insights beyond the reach of mortal minds. That doesn't exist yet. But its predecessor just might.

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Feature: I told you this week was Shanghai's week

Know It OWL: Confusion and celebrations in the Overwatch League

This week a lot of people have been asking me which teams are shaking out as the ones to watch in this season of the Overwatch League, or how their favourites are doing. The answer to these questions is always: no one knows, every single team has either caused or suffered an upset (or both!), and everything is chaos. Except for the New York Excelsior,…

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Overwatch’s Baptiste is now chucking immortality fields around the PTR

Caring not for the sanctity of a normal news cycle, Blizzard released Baptiste on the Overwatch test servers a few hours after announcing him. He's a combat medic who, we know now, has an ability that renders him and nearby teammates immune to damage. Like, all types of damage. People are running around in the death-zones underneath cliffs. They're jumping about in traffic. It's carnage.…

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4 weeks ago

New Overwatch hero threatens you with bullets or bandages

Quick, hurry to the special bell: a new Overwatch hero has been announced. Baptiste is his name, and healing people is his game. Also killing people, because this is an FPS and of course everyone does that. He's a combat medic with a tragic past, as you're about to learn in his origin video. There are no hard details on his abilities just yet. Only…

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The Shanghai Dragons finally secure their first Overwatch League victory

It finally happened. The Overwatch League’s Shanghai Dragons, who lost every one of their 40 matches in the inaugural season, finally won one. Not only that, they took three straight maps with apparent ease from the Boston Uprising, former team of main tank player Noh “Gamsu” Youngjin, allowing him to show them what a mistake it was to trade him away to the Dragons with…

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1 month ago

Feature: Next week, Shanghai

Know It OWL: The Overwatch League Awakens

Week one of the Overwatch League is over – though teams did their best to make it last as long as possible. With control maps going down to the wire, extra rounds being tacked onto what felt like every capture point map, and many matches needing a tie-breaker fifth game, there was a whole lot of competition, both in terms of raw minutes and in…

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Overwatch is off to gay Paris in latest map, now live

The Overwatch gang are off on their hols to Paris in the newest map, added last night. Now everyone's just scrapping for funsies, the 'watch' part of their name is more about sightseeing than surveilling and their global tour has now reached the City of Lights. The map's been on the test servers for three weeks, and now it's in the main client for all…

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Feature: Listen to these echoing gunshots

Podcast: Guns, guns, guns

 Bang bang, listeners. This week we are talking about the greatest guns, the wackiest weapons, the most fabulous firearms, all in a serious and knowing fashion on the RPS podcast, the Electronic Wireless Show. The pod squad are stocking a chest full of videogame firearms, like three frightening quartermasters. Matthew is sequestering a laser pointer from Gears of War, Alice wants the exploding teddy…

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The Overwatch League is back tonight, but missing many of the staff who made last season so excellent

The Overwatch League is back tonight for its second season, seeing 20 teams face off in an attempt to be crowned the ultimate champions. Will the London Spitfire manage to repeat their successes? Can anyone stop the powerhouse that is the New York Excelsior? Will the Shanghai Dragons finally net their first win? It all kicks off at 4pm PST/12am GMT, and you can watch…

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Activision Blizzard prioritise profit over people, laying off around 800 employees

Not content with what Activision CEO Bobby Kotick referred to as “record results” in an earnings call yesterday, the World of Warcraft and Call of Duty publisher has begun plans to layoff 8% of its total employees. That’s around 800 people out of work, many of them speculated to be “among the company’s lowest earners”.

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Feature: Goats will eat anything, you know

Know It OWL: Goat herding in the Overwatch League

The Overwatch League is finally back tomorrow*! Before that, though, we've got plenty to cover: a turbulent preseason showing, last minute player issues, and a look at the most exciting upcoming games. First, though, we’ve got to talk about Goats.

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2 months ago

Feature: From Atlanta to Washington

Know It OWL: Previously on the Overwatch League

The Overwatch League is a complicated thing. Who could be expected to keep track of 20 teams with nearly 200 players, playing 16 games per week using 29 heroes? Well, this freelance lifestyle has to be good for something, and that something is going to be synthesising the whole thing down into weekly bite-sized pieces for you, dear reader. So hi! Welcome! We’ve got some…

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Overwatch’s new Paris map has some ace pianos

Bonjour, my little cauliflowers. The new Overwatch map klaxon is a-clanging, summoning us all to the glitz and glamour of Parisian street murder. In a pre-Valentine's surprise, Blizzard popped Paris on the public test servers last night. Are they gearing up for some grand Valentine's Day event? Hopefully. In the meantime, here is a neat piano and a robot singer.

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Overwatch romances all Three Kingdoms for Lunar New Year

Do not pursue Lu Bu, because he has shotguns - you should probably snipe him instead in Overwatch's Lunar New Year event, starting now and running until February 18th. Celebrating the Year Of The Pig in China, most of the cast are dressed up again as characters of Chinese myth and legend, including a few choice picks from Romance Of The Three Kingdoms. This event…

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Unofficial Overwatch tournament will test out a hero ban system

Whether or not the Overwatch League should implement hero bans has been a hot topic among fans and professionals lately. Those who are behind the approach believe it'll mix up a stale meta, but it's hard to say for sure until we see it in action. Luckily, some players will be taking it for a test drive (albeit unofficially) in tonight’s Tournament of Future Champions,…

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