Overwatch: A Newbie’s First Intro Into The Biggest And Most Beloved Online Multiplayer FPS Video Game

At this point in my gamer life, I have played and been exposed to a wide range of video games. I’d say I have come a long way since my medium status as a gamer when I fully embraced being one back in 2009. But one of the games I haven’t played much of are games specifically designed to be online multiplayer games. Think of games like Destiny and League of Legends. These type of games don’t interest me much because it requires you to either play with a friend who owns the same game as you, or play with a bunch of strangers online if you don’t know anyone else who has the game. I’ve always been content with playing games that are singular experiences and doesn’t require an Internet connection to play. Recently, I finally took a chance on Blizzard Entertainment’s wildly successful 2016 online multiplayer, first-person shooter Overwatch.

When the game came out last year, the buzz and hype for Overwatch was huge. Games journalists often talked about the popular FPS in their latest articles, and convention floors started having plenty of attendees cosplaying as their favorite Overwatch character everywhere you turned. I may not have been too familiar with the game itself, but I knew of Overwatch and some of the characters populating social media (D. Va and Tracer being the top ones I saw either in my Facebook or Twitter feeds).

[Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
At the time, I only knew one good friend who played Overwatch and often cited D. Va as a huge favorite of his. Then two more friends discovered the game and became instant fans as well. There’s one friend who I call my regular online gaming buddy. Despite living only a few blocks away from each other, seeing each other in person has become tricky with our different work schedules. While I work the usual 9 to 5 job, she works nights at a hospital and has to sleep during the day. The only time we get to see each other in person is when she gets the time off to either attend a fun event with me, planned months in advance, or when she isn’t too lazy to maybe meet someplace nearby for a few hours on the weekends she’s off from work. We’ve made it our goal to try and game with each other every other Friday night (or Saturday night) when she’s scheduled to be off that weekend. We’ve played and completed Borderlands 1 and 2 together and we’re nearly halfway done with Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel. We played the multiplayer for Mass Effect: Andromeda and went through some of Castle Crashers together. If it wasn’t for our mutual dedication to game every other weekend, I probably wouldn’t have touched the multiplayer on some of these games. Over time, we both realized we were kind of running out of games we both owned to play online together. That’s when she mentioned she got Overwatch and has been playing it often on her own.

Overwatch started piquing my interest more and more when I saw how diverse their lineup of characters are and the fact that two of my friends now own the game on the same console as me. My other friend, who has been playing Overwatch since its initial release, owns and plays it on the PC. I don’t PC game and I doubt I’ll ever add that to my list of gaming options. To have my usual gaming buddy tell me she has Overwatch for Xbox One and also needing more games to play online together, I finally decided it was time to get the game for myself. With what little I’ve played of it so far, I now get why Overwatch is being praised so highly by the gaming community at large.

All the characters of Overwatch. [Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
As I mentioned earlier, Overwatch has a diverse array of characters coming from different ethnic backgrounds, genders, species, and races with different skill sets and special abilities to be used on the battle field. For instance, D. Va is a former Korean pro-gamer who is a heavy hitter with a mech, Tracer is a former British pilot who has the unique ability to blink in and out of areas, and Hanzo is an agile Japanese archer who can summon a dragon. That’s only scratching the surface of the selection of 25 playable characters in the game who come with their own origin stories.

I like this kind of diversity in video games, and Overwatch stands out because of their characters. With so many to choose from, you’re bound to find at least one or two characters you really love playing as. I’ve only played the game twice with my friend and the practice mode once when I first downloaded the game to my console. I haven’t fully experienced everything Overwatch has to offer a player just yet, but having played two and a half hours of matches on two separate nights with my friend, I can actually see myself doing some matches solo when she isn’t available to play with me. This is actually a first for me, and maybe telling of how Blizzard Entertainment managed to create such a stellar game. Before Overwatch, I wouldn’t really bother playing any online multiplayer on my own, especially with the reputation online gaming communities sometimes have of being verbally abusive to players who may not be as good at a game as some seasoned players or being targeted because of your gender. Luckily, there’s a reason why you can mute or disconnect the chat function when you want to blissfully enjoy a game without dealing with the few trolls who would aim to make your gaming experience a living hell.

Who says you can’t be a pro-gamer and a badass at the same time? D. Va showing how it’s done. [Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
Aside from the great characters, the maps are fun and beautifully designed to take you all over the world from the dusty roads of Route 66 in the American Southwest to the tranquil cherry blossom corners of Japan. Each time you level up, you’re awarded Loot Boxes with goodies to continuously customize your Overwatch characters with new skins or sprays to truly make each of them your own.

While I’ll admit that I still need a lot of practice with the fighting styles of each character, because I kind of suck in most online matches, I’m leaning more towards Pharah, the Egyptian soldier, being my girl in most matches with Hanzo coming in at a close second. Right now, it’s still a little too early to name who my ultimate favorite Overwatch character is. What I do know is I’ve become an Overwatch convert and fan just like the rest of my friends who discovered the game before me. I’m excited to eventually perfect my fighting skills in the game and uncover more of the glorious world of Overwatch.

Pharah takes aim and flight. [Credit: Blizzard Entertainment]
Have you played Overwatch? Who’s your favorite character to play in matches?

7 thoughts on “Overwatch: A Newbie’s First Intro Into The Biggest And Most Beloved Online Multiplayer FPS Video Game

  1. That’s awesome you’re giving this one a try! It sounds really fun. It’s cool to hear your characters too — since I feel like we have similar taste in gameplay, I’ll definitely check out those characters first if I play this one! I’ve thought about it for sure. I’m just always so busy with other games that I haven’t gotten around to it, and right now Destiny 2 is fulfilling my need for a “social” game! Anyway, great post and I’m glad you’re having fun with Overwatch. (Also, I suck in multiplayer matches too, no matter what game it is haha.) 🙂

    1. Thanks Ashley! Destiny 2 is definitely THE game for a number of my other gaming friends too, haha!

      I was convinced that I would never play Overwatch, mostly because I didn’t know anyone who owned the game on the Xbox One, my preferred gaming device of choice. I heard so many good things about the game and the character designs always looked super cool, but I also didn’t have much interest in only online multiplayer type video games. I guess in a way the stars were lining up for me to buy and play this game. 🙂 I think if this is the only online multiplayer game I’ll ever play of this kind, I’m glad it’s Overwatch. I think Blizzard Entertainment made a game with a lot of staying power to it. It’s also good to turn on if you’re looking for a quick match or two when you don’t have a lot of time to game on some days. That’s what I discovered anyway.

      And yeah, it seems like our taste in games and styles of gaming are very similar! 😀 I’m glad I’m not the only one who kinda sucks in match games. I’m always happy if I at least get one kill in a game or I was able to be useful to my teammates who are nailing all the kills! I think you’ll find your own favorites in Overwatch too if you play. D. Va is one of the popular and most beloved characters of Overwatch, so I thought maybe she’d be an instant fit for me. Turns out, it’s all about Pharah. It’s amazing what you’ll discover when you start playing a game yourself.

  2. I played overwatch for the first time this weekend during the free weekend offer, but really don’t know how I feel about it. I certainly enjoyed playing it, love love love the characters, and the maps are lovely BUT I’m not sure if it’s something I could play a lot of before getting bored? I only played for an hour and a half during the free weekend because it just wasn’t as exciting as I thought it would be?

    1. I’ve played the game solo without my friend a few times already, but I think the game plays better when you have a friend playing with you. I wanted to keep playing more matches when it was me and her during our regular gaming sessions. When it’s just me, I can get a good 10 or 20 minutes out of the game, maybe an hour, but that’s really it. Having a friend or two play Overwatch with you really enhances the experience for me. I mean, yeah you can play as a team with complete strangers, but it’s not the same when you play with a friend. You can talk to each other and you know they’ll have your back during matches. There have been some players in matches that are either really helpful and work with you as a team or you have the others who don’t.

      I’m thinking maybe you might like the game more if you’re playing with another person. Otherwise, even I, admittedly, can’t really see myself playing Overwatch solo for more than an hour at a time.

  3. Have lots of fun, and make sure you don’t let people’s toxicity get to you. I particularly love playing in Quick Play where teams have a bit more freedom to be creative with plays and compositions and are generally not as worried about performance compared to the competitive mode.

    With Pharah, the thing I recommend the most is learning to predict enemy movement so you can get the most out of her rockets and usually try not to aim directly at them but at a place close to where they will be…unless it’s a tank. if it’s a tank, blast them! Knowing how to get the best out of her concussive blast, using it to push people out of boundaries or to give yourself a boost is also super important.

    Finally, get the Mecha Queen skin, it’s my favourite 😛

    I love playing Pharah though my mains are Genji & Reinhardt, though I’ve had a lot of fun with Orisa lately.

    I have to admit I’m better at dying to enemy Hanzos than playing the character! 😛

    1. Thanks! Well, when I decide to play without my friend I just make sure I don’t have my chat enabled. But you are right about not letting the trolls or toxic players scare you away from playing a game. Everyone has a right to play the game they want and have fun!

      I don’t think I’ve played enough of Overwatch to notice a distinction between Quick Play and Competitive mode. They all sort of look the same to me! XD I’ll be sure to play both next time and compare the two.

      And thank you for the tips on Pharah! 🙂 Honestly, I don’t come into playing these games with a strategy. I probably should, but I think I need to keep focusing on actually learning each character’s control and attack schemes first and then think of better strategies to gain the upper hand in matches.

      Haha, I’m actually with you on Hanzo! I really like playing as him, but I’m still not very good at mastering his bow and arrow skills just yet. I certainly have been taken out by opponents’ Hanzos rather than mine dishing the pain. Hopefully, I can play Genji and Reinhardt more in my next playthrough! 🙂

      1. With Hanzo, usually I just aim at the general direction of my enemies and it seems to work. The hitbox on the arrows, though it has varied a bit, is still on the tree-trunk scale, so there’s’ a good chance to hit anything hahaha. Most of my deaths to Hanzo are just random blind shots.

        Trust me, I didn’t come into Overwatch with strategies or plans either. It’s the first game in the genre that I like, I was surprised by how much to be honest.

        Pharah is super fun to play.

        As for competitive vs quick play, I’ll let you form your own opinions. I don’t want to sour you on a mode of play because of some of my bad experiences. But if you do try out competitive, let me know.

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