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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

3 days ago

Overwatch begins testing its game-changing Role Queue system

The age of casually flitting between roles mid-match in Overwatch is over, as Blizzard just dropped a game-changing patch on their competitive team shooter's public test servers. Applying to Quick and Competitive match modes (as well as the esports league, which is a shakeup), players will now have to commit to a role - Tank, DPS or Support - before their match and queue for…

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4 days ago

Feature: There's not much more of a Breakthrough than this

Know It OWL: Dragons at the peak

I’ve said two things here multiple times. Firstly, this season of the Overwatch League is one of upsets and unpredictability. Secondly, I love and cherish Shanghai Dragons. But I still wasn’t ready for the Dragons to face a playoff gauntlet of the big three teams, New York Excelsior, Vancouver Titans, and San Francisco Shock, and beat them one after one to become stage champions. In…

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5 days ago

Overwatch to start ending matches when it detects cheats

Rather than have players suffer through matches where cheaters are cheating up the place, saving bans for future punishment, Overwatch should soon shut down games mid-round as soon as it detects skulduggery. That's a solution Blizzard are currently toying with on the test servers, director Jeff Kaplan explained last week, and it sounds great. When faced with cheaters, I have always found some catharsis in…

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2 weeks ago

Feature: I don't know what peach thing is about and at this point I'm too afraid to ask

Know It OWL: Atlanta adventures

The Overwatch League’s season three has hurtled towards its playoffs, locking in all of the places for next week. Although Shanghai Dragons didn’t have to make it quite so close, did they? My poor heart could barely take it. And now they’ll be facing New York Excelsior in the quarterfinals, a team that heard people (me) say that they were squarely in third place behind…

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3 weeks ago

Innovative new controller lets you ragequit by pouring literal salt

If only there was an easier way to stop playing your favourite games. The infuriating multiplayer ones, I mean - mid-session while you're at the peak of being piqued. I'm guilty of a ragequit or three, and I'm thrilled at the prospect of future anger absconsions being facilitated by the literal manifestation of my salt. The dream is real thanks to Eric Heckman, a YouTuber…

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4 weeks ago

Feature: This is a complicated way of saying I have no idea what's going on

Know It OWL: The only thing more fake than the meta is the power rankings

Stage three of the Overwatch League didn’t seem like it would be especially exciting. The Goats meta remained untouched by major balance patches in the break. Teams had mostly established themselves at the top and bottom of the rankings, though there was plenty of jostling in the middle. Even in the first couple of weeks, things seemed to be progressing as expected, but for a…

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Overwatch League’s first MVP skin is pretty, lucky

Last season, Bang “Jjonak” Sunghyeon was crowned the Overwatch League’s “most valuable player” (MVP). The Zenyatta player is now being honoured in-game with a skin for his signature hero, which players will be able to buy for a limited time starting next week for 200 tokens (about $10, or you could earn them by watching 33 hours of live OWL broadcasts.) It’s expensive, but it…

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1 month ago

Feature: Second half, second chances

Know It OWL: Overwatch League kicks off stage 3 in style

Happy Overwatch League stage three, and happy Pride. Both were celebrated in fine form at the arena this week, and while Blizzard could stand to improve how they handle both in many ways, aw, it was nice to see all the excited fan signs and rainbows everywhere. Alongside the festivities, teams were clearly looking ahead as we're now into the final half of the League.…

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Rumour: Blizzard cancelled a StarCraft FPS “like Battlefield”

A team at Blizzard had been working on a first-person shooter set in the world of their StarCraft real-time strategy games, the rumour mill says, but it's recently been cancelled. One secret source told Kotaku that the game was a bit "like Battlefield in the StarCraft universe" though we may never see or know much more about it. Cancelling unannounced games is fairly standard for…

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2 months ago

Feature: Over and over

Has Overwatch been improved by its updates?

“I came in like a wrecking ball,” sang Miley Cyrus. “Yeah, I just closed my eyes and swung.” She was, of course, talking about Overwatch’s playable hamster, Hammond, referred to as “Wrecking Ball” in Blizzard’s multiplayer shooter thanks to his control of a spherical, grappling-hook-equipped mech.

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Feature: The times, they are a changin'

Know It OWL: Mid-season musings

The Overwatch League is on a break at the moment. A lull in the action, though, is often the best time to look back at what's changed, and forward at what might. This is especially true considering the departure of League Commissioner Nate Nanzer to Epic Games, raising questions about what that could mean for both Overwatch and Fortnite. When I interviewed Nanzer last year,…

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Overwatch’s new replay system is a powerful tool for photography, bragging

Overwatch added its long-awaited replay feature this week, allowing players to go back through their last ten games in order to see what went right, what went wrong, and how they might improve. Alternatively, it's a nice way to get a look at the hard work of the environment and asset artists that usually gets overlooked in the whirlwind of battle. And it's a very…

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Re-re-watch: Overwatch finally adding replays

For Overwatch players who wish to revisit former glories or learn from past mistakes, Blizzard are finally adding the much-requested feature of replays. As you'd expect from the feature that's been common in multiplayer shooters for oh so many years, it will let players view past matches from different perspectives at different speeds and all that. Me, I'm hoping I'll get to finally take some…

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Overwatch celebrates three years with old brawls, new looks and a free trial

Overwatch has now been kicking around the multiplayer shooter scene for three years, although it feels like longer, thanks to the game's constant barrage of seasonal updates and events. Blizzard are kicking off their anniversary celebrations with a trial week, so anyone still on the fence can try the game free here, and newcomers will get to try all of the notable event modes of…

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Dota 2’s paid “avoid player” option is part of a pattern of developers sidelining anti-abuse features

Dota 2's International 2019 Battle Pass has plenty of issues. As Matt wrote earlier this month, alongside a waterfall of cosmetics and a special mode, the pass will unlock an in-game assistant that seems to give owners an advantage over those who haven’t forked over at least £7.50/$10. But (as reported by The Verge) the pass is paywalling another key feature – the ability to…

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Feature: You could say their dominance came as a... Shock

Know It OWL: San Francisco Shock Special Edition

The thing about writing a column about the Overwatch League is that you have to be selective. There are 20 teams playing 16 games per week, so you necessarily have to pick out certain stories to follow and let others fall by the wayside. Unfortunately, that means that I have barely mentioned the team who just became our stage two champions, San Francisco Shock. Oops.…

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How one deaf Overwatch fan is trying to make the game more accessible

If you’re tuning into the Overwatch League’s stage two playoffs this weekend, you might see a video featuring 14-year-old Danik Soudakoff. Soudakoff is an attendee of some of the games in the Burbank arena, a fan of the Los Angeles Valiant, and deaf. When attending games, he gets an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter to keep him informed, and he’s been a part of creating…

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Overwatch rolls out its rum-scented, sun-bleached Havana map

After a relaxing stay on the public test realm, the latest competitive Overwatch map makes its way to the regular leagues. Released yesterday, Havana is an Escort map set on the anachronistic but sunny streets of Cuba. Befitting the location, the attacking team are trying to get a truck full of rum barrels to the Don Rumbotico distillery, presumably to be filled with delicious dark…

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3 months ago

Turn-based Overwatch is the best way to play 3v3 deathmatch

Thanks to the Overwatch Workshop Blizzard released into testing last week, the test server browser is now full of custom games with enticing names like "Mystery Egg", "Thanos - No Endgame Spoilers" and "Skyrim". I've already told you about the joys of spaceships and Weeping Angels. Now I'm going to tell you about the delights of Turn-based Overwatch.

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Feature: OWL on the road

Know It OWL: Crowd pleasers

This week of the Overwatch League saw teams travelling to Dallas for what was advertised as “The First Home Game” (apparently the two separate teams that represent Los Angeles don’t count). Four thousand fans packed into the Texas arena, cheering for Dallas Fuel and splitting in two (if somewhat unevenly) when it came to the showdown against Houston Outlaws. It was a dry run, in…

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