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Overwatch

Overwatch review

Heroic effort

120

Overwatch: Sombra abilities and strategy tips

Learn how to play Overwatch's hacker

13

Overwatch: Ana abilities and strategy tips

Learn how to play the support sniper

11

2 days ago

Overwatch celebrates Lunar New Year with face-shifting new skins

How are you with rodents? Lunar New Year returns to Overwatch today, celebrating the Year of the Rat with a wealth of themed cosmetics old and new. It's all gone rather theatrical this year, with heroes like Sombra, Lucio, Brigitte and Moira celebrating musical and damatic styles to engage in the time-honoured tradition of murdering each other to steal flags. Me? I'm with Junkrat up…

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1 week ago

For the second year running, the Glaad awards look like they’re missing the mark on celebrating queer representation

Glaad (formerly known as the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) have brought their media awards back for the 31st year, and for the second year in a row they're recognising video games "for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community and the issues that affect their lives". Last year, Jay Castello wrote about how these video…

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4 weeks ago

Feature: Learn the ropes

The decade, as told in grappling hooks

The last ten years have brought us many joys. We've already celebrated the best games of the past decade, but with such scattergun nomination comes neglect. Only three of the fifty games we picked had grappling hooks, so clearly the entire endeavour was pointless and you will need an alternative resource. Here's my definitive guide to the swinging tenties. I haven't mentioned Worms, because they…

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1 month ago

Feature: Death of a gamepad

Goodnight, sweet Steam Controller

Right now, there’s a room in Buffalo Grove, Illinois that's as quiet as a grave. The power is off, the robotic limbs are becalmed, and the once thumping presses are depressed. The Steam Controller assembly room is assembling no more, and with the recent Steam sale clearing out all the stock, the grand experiment is over. It’s the final part of Valve’s great Steam Machines…

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Feature: The definitive and objective list

The greatest PC games of the 2010s

It's been an eventful decade for PC games, and it would be hard for you to summarise everything that's happened in the medium across the past ten years. Hard for you, but a day's work for us. Below you'll find our picks for the 50 greatest games released on PC across the past decade.

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2 months ago

Try Overwatch for free, pick it up at a discount during Blizzard’s Black Friday sale

Have you played Overwatch? You haven't? Well, for the next week, you've no excuse not to at least give it a go. Blizzard's Saturday morning shooter is offering a free trial from today 'till next Wednesday, letting you try your hand at Overwatch without spending a penny. With Blizzard's extended Black Friday Sale kicking off today too, it'll be a hell of a lot cheaper…

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Feature: Don't race ahead

Competition is wild, joyous and fulfilling – except when it isn’t

I've always been drawn to competitive videogames. It's not hard to see why. They're the best kind. Competition can be exciting, rich, varied. It gets you interacting with people, pitting your abilities against thinking, improvising, engaged and pivotally human opponents. A competitive context can be both a wonderful generator of interesting decisions, and a platform for genuine connection. I believe in and value these things…

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Feature: A wild west of spliced heroes and Mercy death squads

Overwatch’s custom games offer the exciting twists Overwatch 2 won’t

All my years of muscle memory are gone. Overwatch's custom games tab, where hero powers are traded furtively in dingy dens and game balance lies dead in the corner, has stripped them out. With the introduction of Overwatch’s workshop, players are able to make wild game-modes with the official tools, and share them with ease. I've fought an entire enemy team grafted onto Doomfist. I’ve…

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Mercy’s Recall Challenge gives the Overwatch medic a more practical set of scrubs

Resident Overwatch Medic Mercy has always looked a little more superhero than surgeon. That's fair, of course - she spends far more time in warzones than the ward. But I doubt skin-tight latex is the sort of thing you'd wear to fill out perscription slips. This week Blizzard kicked off the Mercy Recall Challenge, letting players earn a more professional skin for Dr Angela Zeigel…

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Feature: Two doesn't need to be

Overwatch 2 doesn’t look like a sequel, but a true sequel would be doomed to disappoint

Overwatch creative director Jeff Kaplan says he wants to "redefine what a sequel means", but I'm loath to let him get away with that. When he talks about Overwatch 2's focus on co-operative missions, essentially expanded versions of the first game's underwhelming seasonal PvE events, I just hear a man telling me I should lower my expectations. The more I think about it, though, the…

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Feature: But protesters still hope they raised awareness

It was business as usual at Blizzcon despite Hong Kong protests

It wasn't possible to ignore the protesters directly outside Blizzcon's gates this year. They were drawn by Blizzard's ongoing failure to respond appropriately to Hearthstone pro Chung "Blitzchung" Ng Wai calling for the liberation of Hong Kong in an interview. They clustered right outside, handing out shirts, placards, and information. But inside, it was easy to forget. In a sea of people wearing Blizzard merchandise,…

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3 months ago

Feature: A new way to tell the same story

Overwatch 2 focuses on the story, but doesn’t seem to correct any of its issues

If you’ve played one of Overwatch’s lore PvE events, you probably know what to expect from the bulk of the new stuff that’s unique in Overwatch 2. The mostly-sequel format of its release means that a cleaner UI, new heroes, and a new map type will be added to the first game at the same time that the sequel launches, leaving a new look for…

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Overwatch 2 announced, adding a hearty kick of PvE

After a run of leaks and rumours, Blizzard today announced Overwatch 2 at BlizzCon. The FPS sequel will feature "a ton" of PvE and story bits, director Jeff Kaplan said in stage at BlizzCon, including "highly replayable" cooperative missions. A new core PvP mode is in too, along with new maps, new characters, and new looks for old characters. It'll feature cross-game multiplayer with the…

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Rumour: Overwatch 2 will have more PvE and be playable at BlizzCon this week

ESPN, "the leading multinational, multimedia sports entertainment entity"*, have apparently got their hands on Blizzard's Overwatch 2 notes. They've got a source and a training document that say the game will be revealed at BlizzCon later this week, and will include "PvE features" involving "in-game items" and "hero talents". This gels with a report from 5 months back, plus it's a pretty logical move. Still,…

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Someone built Tetris in Overwatch

In the year of our lord 2019, as games embrace embrace the power of community-driven Workshop content, they are all destined to become Tetris. I pin this on the spirit of Tetris itself, reaching out from the 1980s in an ongoing life or death struggle for cultural relevance. If Tetris was a character in American Gods they'd be smashing it. Someone has used the Overwatch…

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4 months ago

Feature: Turn page

Know It OWL: End chapter

With a few minutes on the countdown until the Overwatch League grand finals, I realised I had a problem: I didn’t know who I was supporting. Neither San Francisco Shock nor Vancouver Titans are my team, but usually in any matchup there’s a narrative I like more, players I’m fond of, some quirk or another that’ll push me in one direction. But Shock and Titans…

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Overwatch matches to flood with Bastions attempting chandelier jumps

I'm not a sports-watcher. Generally, looking at people play games just leaves me with the wriggly, uncomfortable sensation that my time could be better spent playing a game myself. Every now and then, though, I see a clip of a pro pulling off something wild and get a glimpse of what I'm missing. Like Bastion yeeting himself up to a chandelier and raining fiery canon…

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Overwatch ‘remaster’ patch dishes out changes to nearly half the roster on the PTR

Yesterday's Overwatch update to the public test servers calls itself a 'remaster', which immediately got me worried. After all, Overwatch has long been sliding away from its more accessible roots, killing some brilliant (if broken) abilities in the never-ending push to be a good esport. What have they done now, I panicked. Removed D.Va's mech? Decided Pharah didn't realy need a jetpack? Not quite -…

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Overwatch gives Bastion a Lego makeover with new challenge skin

The best thing about Bastion, Overwatch's portable chaingun, is the way it falls apart. Other heroes might spiral and ragdoll once they've popped their last hitpoint, but Bastion? The robot falls apart like every screw in its chassis just gave up, leaving a discarded Bionicle kit on the battlefield. There's a bunch of Overwatch Lego kits these days, but it's no wonder Bastion's Lego reimagining…

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