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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

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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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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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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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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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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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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3 months ago

5 months ago

Feature: "We’re definitely working our hardest to make sure that people realise the value of all people."

How Immortals are tackling inclusivity in the esports industry

In 2014, Noah Whinston was struggling to see why he should support any specific esports team. He felt as though each was only branding itself on how good their players were, and, as he puts it, “no team wins forever.” In the same year, Sabrina Wong attended her first esports event: MLG Anaheim. Thousands of fans watched hundreds of professionals face off in a variety…

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6 months ago

Feature: Whistlestop tour

The Overwatch League’s city-based ambitions finally make sense to me

The Overwatch League has been busy in its off-season, announcing eight new teams that will join the competition when it starts back up again in January. Like the 12 that came before them, each will bear the name of a city: Paris, Guangzhou, Vancouver, and so on. But, for now, they’ll continue to play entirely from Blizzard’s arena in Burbank, California, with no real connection…

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Feature: Great games to play against friends

The 25 best multiplayer games on PC

Multiplayer games are the best type of games, because they're built around the most interesting components known to humans: humans. Men, women, and an awful lot of children. Internet strangers aren't always the friendliest bunch, but they can surprise you in ways that a static system can't. People form the living, beating hearts of the gaming moments I value the most. Join me, then, as…

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7 months ago

Feature: Not always a winning pick

Competitive Overwatch rebuilds around Wrecking Ball

The Overwatch League might be in its off season, but competitive Overwatch rumbles on with the Contenders tier entering its playoff stages. Controversially, these playoffs have been taking place on an updated patch, introducing huge changes for players to adapt to, including the newest hero, Wrecking Ball, and the new version of Symmetra. Teams haven’t had a lot of time to practice with the new…

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9 months ago

Feature: Fake niceness > insults

Overwatch’s new endorsement system works, but makes being nice mean less

I love team-based competitive multiplayer games, but I hate that so many people who play them behave awfully. If you make a visible mistake in a game of Dota 2 and aren't playing with a full suite of friends, I can guarantee that someone will be obnoxious about it. Before last week, I could have said the same about Overwatch, but Blizzard have swooped in…

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Feature: I'm hooked

Overwatch’s new mecha death hamster is a ball

One of the first things that excited me about Overwatch, long before I got the chance to play it, was hearing about Widowmaker's grappling hook. I needn't tell you that grappling hooks are the most entertaining toys video games have ever given us - partly because I'm sure I and everyone else who writes about games has already told you, and partly because it's a…

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Feature: Blizzard's shooter is getting less interesting

Overwatch’s Symmetra changes placate the toxic parts of its community

Symmetra has always been a bit of an odd-hero-out among Overwatch’s roster of characters. She was the only support character not capable of healing her teammates, leaving players unsure of what her role was. Despite a previous rework, she was rarely played. At lower levels she was sometimes chosen in very specific situations, usually as the first point of defence on certain maps, but her…

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10 months ago

Feature: Overwork in Overwatch

The Overwatch League must take burnout seriously

The Shanghai Dragons are still yet to win an Overwatch League game. In response to some fan’s concerns about this record, their manager, Yang Van, released a statement on the subject – but it ended up being less than reassuring. He explained that the Dragons "have the most intensive training scheme among all the teams... Our daily schedule starts at 10:30am as we leave for…

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11 months ago

Feature: Support and consider

Being a fan of esports’ pioneering women is complicated

It’s two o’clock in the morning and I’m watching the Overwatch League stadium erupt for Kim "Geguri" Se-yeon. As the camera pans down the line-up of her team, the Shanghai Dragons, it’s always her that gets the loudest cheer, and by a wide margin. Because she’s a fantastic off-tank and because she’s one of the new additions that have so greatly improved the (admittedly still…

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12 months ago

Feature: Update Night

Has Overwatch been improved by its updates?

Update Night is a fortnightly column in which Rich McCormick revisits games to find out whether they've been changed for better or worse. You’d not think that a dude who calls himself “Doomfist” would be a particularly complex personality, but returning to Overwatch for the first time since Blizzard started adding new heroes to its team shooter, I found him the hardest to understand. That's no…

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