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Overwatch

Nendoroid – Junkrat

I have, so far, picked up every one of the Overwatch Nendoroid figures released so far. They all have some ups and downs, but on the whole they are pretty good. Today, I want to talk a bit about Nendoroid Junkrat.

Of all of the figures released in this series so far, Junkrat is definitely one of the most unique. Honestly he seems fairly unique compared to all Nendos, not just the Overwatch releases. Maybe there is some vague hope that there might be some Tank characters released in this line after all, with how much Junkrat has going on that’s special. First off, he is a fair amount larger than the previous releases. I honestly never really realized it in game since Junkrat is always hunched over, but if you look at a pure size chart, he’s one of the taller characters in the game. His Nendo, even with its goofy short proportions, is taller than the previous releases.

Part of this comes from his huge head and hair. These are also a bit unique in design, though Sombra who came out at the same time shares the uniqueness. On the previous figures, generally the bangs of the hair are removable, and the face plates swap out underneath the hair. The face plates are pretty interchangeable, that is, you can easily put Tracer’s face on Mercy, if you want. Junkrat’s entire front half of his head makes up his face plates, instead of just the bottom half like other Nendoroids. The hair bits also have to be removed and reattached in chunks, to make the swap. It’s a little clunky to do quickly, but the end result looks better. with his partially bald head, a plate styled like other Nendos would have left a visible seam across his forehead.

Speaking of the face plates, he also has a swapable mouth piece to give him a “tongue hanging out” look. As a side note, the eyes and mouth on the second head LOOK like they could be removable/swapable, but I didn’t really want to test the limits of the plastic and couldn’t get mine to come out. There isn’t really any noticeable difference in the base face anyway, so swapping the eyes around wouldn’t really do anything useful.

Additionally, he has his peg leg. This is also fairly unique to Junkrat. Between the peg leg and his huge head unfortunately, it also means he’s not going to be standing without a stand anytime ever. Though most Nendos have small enough feet that you’re going to have a hard time getting them to stand up independently anyway.

All these unique bits though help give him a lot of neat character to his design. He definitely comes off as “Junkrat,” goofy and crazy looking.

He doesn’t stop at his basic design though. He has a slew of really neat accessories. All of the weapons he wields in the game are represented here, he has his sticky bomb, his grenade launcher, his trap, and his Rip-Tire. The launcher and sticky bomb are fairly boring, the sticky bomb isn’t even painted, but the trap and tire are both great.

The trap can be laid out open or closed, and had a hand designed to hold it up to emulate his in game emote where he uses it like a puppet. The Tire is nicely detailed and can be mounted to his back, or to a extra articulated arm piece as if it’s being launched and rolling away.

You can add in on top of this that MSRP for Junkrat isn’t more than the previous releases, it makes him feel like a pretty good bang for your buck figure. All in all, I think he’s definitely one of the cooler Overwatch Nendoroids so far.


Toy Fair 2019 – What I’m Excited For

This last weekend has been Toy Fair 2019, one of a few times a year when big toy companies show off a lot of their upcoming stuff. Wonder Fest in Tokyo also tends to happen around this time period, though that’s mostly overseas releases. the other big event is SDCC in the summer.

The clear big winner for this year’s Toy Fair definitely seems to be Hasbro. I’m biased, since I have an interest in a lot of their lines, but overall, they really pushed out a deluge of stuff, a lot of it looks decent, some of it could be better, some felt almost non existent.

Transformers

I’ve been in kind of a slump lately with Transformers. There is a lot of neat stuff being put out, but I feel like I’m reaching a point I hit with Star Wars 3.75″ figs years ago where I just sort of, have everything I want, in a good enough representation. I can’t get excited at all about Seige, I have a Hound, and a Sideswipe, and an Ultra Magnus, and several Primes, etc etc.

I was a little disappointed by the lack of Studio Series Devastator. There have been a few reveals of some of the components in the last few months, but we still haven’t seen the complete deal.

The only real exciting thing that came out of the Transformers for me was the Ectrotron ECTO-1 Ghostbusters tie in. I pre ordered it on Hasbro pulse (more on that later). It looks neat, but I am still a little wary, the robot is a little uninspired bot starters. It also looks like it has some elements of Combiner Wars Hot Spot to his torso and legs, which means he is a pricey Voyager at $40. Still, he looks neat, and it makes me wonder what else they might do in the future with crossover figures.

Star Wars Black Series

While I’ve been mostly done with 4″ Star Wars for a while, I still really enjoy the Black Series 6″ line. That said, it kind of felt like there was basically nothing for Black Series shown. I think there was maybe one wave, but nothing that really felt real exciting. There have been so many serious peg warmers in this line, I almost worry it’s on it’s way out. At least I’ve gotten the core cast.

Marvel Legends

Where Transformers and Star Wars felt lacking, Marvel Legends was really knocking it out of the park. It seems like maybe their recent efforts to branch out into some “Lesser” MCU characters and the Villains have been well received, since a whole slew of new figures I never really expected to show up.

Gransmaster Jeff Goldblum, Korg, Skurge, Luis and Ghost, Peggy Carter and Shuri, all minor character that I never really expected them to make. I’m looking forward to all of them. They also, thankfully, are coming in useful 2 packs. When I first say Grandmaster, I expected he would be in a set with another Thor and Hulk, for example. Instead he comes with Korg. Too bad Shuri didn’t get packed with Ross instead of “Another Killmonger” it would have really fit thematically.

There was also a lot of comic themed figures shown, though lately I’ve been kind of steering away from Comic stuff. Mostly for space and somewhat for money reasons. I am just not as interested in the comic figures as much, though I know a lot of people are stoked for the anniversary release figures and they look really nice. A couple stood out for me though, nothing super exciting.

Rock Python, as pointless and random as he is, is neat, because he’s another addition to the Serpent Society. These are a bunch of snake themed villains from the Marvel universe. I’ve gotten several of them over the years and now, because they are kind of all goofy nobodies, I kind of want to keep picking them up. Then there is Boom Boom. While her look is wrong, she is another member of Nextwave, which is totally awesome in my book. All that’s left now is a release of The Captain.

Overwatch

Last year, Hasbro teased their Overwatch license with Mercy. I’ve already been collecting Max Factory’s Figma Overwatch line, but the idea of Hasbro getting the license was exciting for one reason. Max Factory is very unlikely to put out any Tanks. Ok, yeah, we are getting D.Va, but more specifically, we are getting Hana Song, the Pilot of MEKA, which collectively is known as D.Va. Figma isn’t putting out a MEKA. Neither is Hasbro at the moment, but they are doing Reinhardt. And he is at a larger price point, so he will definitely be quite a bit larger.

In fact, the whole selection of the initial wave is pretty interesting. There isn’t a ton of overlap with the Figma line, only Tracer, Mercy and Pharah so far. Figma Reaper comes out this month, but the Hasbro line is giving us Blackwatch Reyas. They are also putting out Shrike Ana instead of regular Ana, which sort of just solidifies that they aren’t just going to focus on the “core designs”, which is something else I don’t really see happening with Figma.

On the other hand, the quality isn’t quite the same as the Figmas, which is understandable since they cost considerably less, but there’s a LOT of iffy going on here.

The heads all seem a little small, and Reyes and Tracer are both really weird looking. Figma Tracer’s face is off too, it’s like no one can pin point what she really looks like in 3D. The pose ability seems like it may leave a lot to be desired as well, though it doesn’t help that whomever photographed these seemed to have no idea what they were doing. Ana, for example, doesn’t see to be able to properly hold her rifle at all.

This makes wanting to pick these up kind of a confusing mess. The nicest looking pair is definitely Phara and Mercy, though they still don’t loo quite as nice as the Figmas. Rein is definitely one I want to pick up, even if he doesn’t seem like he can hold his shield properly at all. Still, this could be a photographer problem. Ana looks nice as well but something fels off about that Soldier and Soldier is pretty likely to get a Figma release eventually, being a popular normal human shaped character and arguably the most important character lorewise.

I will probably test the waters on the non Tanks with Sombra and Lucio. I’m blaming the photographer again on how stuff Lucio looks, and Sombra seems like a decently solid all around figure. Mostly, as awful as it sounds, I feel like Max Factory probably won’t do either of these characters in their line, because they generally aren’t super keen on doing “minority” characters.

Hasbro Pulse

So, it kind of felt like Hasbro also indirectly showed off it’s new online storefront at Hasbro Pulse with Toy Fair as well. They started pushing out pre orders for almost everything as it was announced and they are launching something called Hasbro Pulse Premium, though the details are a little sketchy at this point. The core seems to be discounts and free shipping. I’m kind of interested to see what all it involves. Hasbro Toy Shop really had been getting good before the whole upgrade/rebranding and it looks like they are doubling down. As frustrating as “the hunt’ has become at Wal-Mart and Target etc, and how Amazon seems to completely encourage over priced reseller cancer on their site, I would love it if Hasbro started pushing and selling their own stuff reliably even at regular retail, much less any discounts.



LEGO – Dorado Showdown (75972)

I don’t really review LEGO much, though I actually have quite a lot of LEGO in my collection. I’m making an exception here for this Overwatch themed set, Dorado Showdown, Set #75972. In case you aren’t familiar with Overwatch, it’s a fairly popular team based FPS game for PC and consoles. Blizzard seems to be really trying to push Overwatch into more of a media franchise for 2019. There have already been several figures put out by Goodsmile Company. There is now a line of LEGO sets. Hasbro teased an upcoming line of domestic figures. There have also been several food tie ins from Pop Tarts, Pringles and a cereal Lucio Ohs.

I wonder if it’s a little too little too late though a bit, the game is still popular, but it doesn’t seem quite as popular as it was a year ago. Time will tell on that one. Most of the LEGO sets look pretty decent though a couple seem to be pretty off in terms of scale. I look forward to picking up some others in the future. I decided to start out with the Dorado Showdown set. It felt like a good sort of total package set with mini figs and a vehicle and a little set piece.

So a little history on the set. Dorado is a map type in game called “Payload”. One team escorts the payload to the other end of the map while the other tries to stop them. The payload only moves when someone is standing near it. Dorado is a very Mexican/Spanish architecture themed map, as the name suggests. This set includes the payload, which is the truck, a very small part of the map in the archway, though this archway is in the game near the starting area, and 3 character mini figures, Soldier 76, Reaper, and McCree.

Each of the mini figures is a pretty decent likeness in the small mini fig format. McCree and Reaper have little clothy capes to help fill out their look, I really like McCree’s sideways poncho, though the stiffness of the material makes it lay a little funny. McCree also has an optional air piece to swap for his hat. Reaper and Soldier both have buildable weapon parts, which is nice, but also makes the weapons huge compared to the mini figs. Neither can really stand without being pegged onto something or without a stand. There aren’t any stands included with the set, I just used some I had for photos.

The payload looks good as well, and definitely resembles the Payload from the game. All of the cars in Overwatch are hover cars with little repulsor things in place of the wheels, but the truck has some wheels hidden on the underside so it can still roll easily. The little power generator that sits on the truck bed is removable and can be attached to part of the set piece to “power” the lights. You can open the cab and sit a mini figure inside to drive it as well, though no one actually drives the Payload in game.

The set piece is a little archway and a small fruit stand. The archway shows up just after the starting area in game, before a large open courtyard. It’s a simple design but has some neat tricks in the windows to make the window frames and movable shutter pieces. The LEGO studs on the roof bit also do a decent job of simulating Spanish Tiles for the roof, a feature present all over the map. The truck can easily roll through the archway as well, which is a nice touch.

Overall, it’s a nice little set. The vehicle works as a vehicle or a prop, the archway makes a good backdrop but can still interact with the figures and payload. The hero selection is good as well. The characters gives some variety for attack or defenders, in the game, no one has any real set “sides”. Though if you want to stick with the loose story, Reaper can be a sort of bad guy sand in since he’s been a member of Talon, one of the bad guy groups of Overwatch.

DX-9 K1 Freeman (Overwatch Bastion)

So, even before Goodsmile announced they were doing Overwatch figures of any kind, a company known for 3rd party Transformers, DX-9 put out a transforming 3rd Party Bastion.  Or as it’s officially know, K1 Freeman.  So, a little background, “3rd Party” is a term used often in the Transformers community to refer to a slew of toys and companies that produce unofficial, unlicensed Transformers figures.  There are, I believe, similar operations in other toylines, but Transformers is definitely the biggest market for these toys.  They aren’t straight bootlegs, like you might find at a flee market, where some company produces a replica of of an official toy and sells it for cheap.  These are heavily engineered and often expensive figures, released without the official sanction of the company holding the IP.  They also often get goofy names like “K1 Freeman”.  Bastion, being sort of a Transformer, got the 3rd Party treatment.

I waited on picking this one up for a while, until the official Figma figures were announced.  I seriously doubt Figma ever puts out any of the larger characters, though I’d be happy to be wrong.  I have even less faith that Figma will ever put out a transforming Bastion.  So Freeman is the next best thing.  The main thing that feels off about him is the default skin, which I had honestly forgot what it even looked like, because no one uses it in game.

He does the job pretty dang well.  There is some limitation on the articulation, especially on the gun arm, but it’s mostly pretty good.  Bastion isn’t exactly a ninja or anything, he’s a big heavy military robot that turns into a tank.  Being the product of a 3rd Party Transformers company, he also has all three of Bastion’s modes.  Granted, none of Bastion’s transformations are particularly complex.  For the turret, he pretty much drops to his knees, fold up the arms, and extend the barrel on the back.

The tank involves some parts swapping, though there isn’t really any other way to handle those giant treads.  The Gatling turret swaps for a tank barrel and the legs slide off and get replaced by the tank treads.  The treads are actually functional, which is cool, but rubber on toys tends to not really last, so I imagine over time, they will likely end up falling apart.  The parts forming kind of sucks, but it’s slick and easy so it works.

The best part, Freeman scales very nicely with the official Figma characters.  He might be a tad oversized, but it works, and it’s not a lot if he is.  He also includes a little version of Ganymede, his little parrot friend.  Ganymede has a little peg that lets him peg onto a fee places on the figure.

Overall, Freeman is a pretty nice representation of Bastion.  He’s gotten pretty affordable on eBay as well.  The whole thing is very solidly built and has some nice heft to it as well, nothing flimsy here.  The real X factor is what Hasbro does with it’s recently announced Overwatch line.  They are more likely to release Bastion than Figma, but who knows if it will transform at all.  I suspect it would at best turn into a turret and not a tank.

Figma – Tracer

I have this incredible love/hate relationship with Overwatch.  I do enjoy the game and the characters, but I kind of hate a lot of aspects of the game play.  There are a lot of annoying balance issues going on right now.  I also feel like the lack of community servers still really hurts the game and the ability to get over a lot of it’s flaws by at least playing with fun people regularly.  This isn’t really supposed to be a rant about Overwatch though, it’s about Figma Tracer.

Good Smile Company has two main lines and a bunch of other sub lines, they are producing Overwatch figures for the two primary lines, Nindoroid and Figma.  Both lines offered Tracer as their initial offering, though so far the Nendoroid line is far outpacing the Figma line in terms of releases.  Where Nendoroid Tracer is a stylized Chibi version of the face of Overwatch, the Figma is much closer to the likeness you’d see in game.

Unfortunately it’s not a perfect likeness.  The worst offense on this toy is the face.  It’s just… off… all over.  It’s almost like it’s a sort of bizarre bishoujo version of Tracer.  There is definitely too much “anime” in the sculpt.  I mean, Overwatch is pretty heavily cartoon in it’s stylization, but it’s not manga styled.  It’s kind of funny because the Nendoroid version almost looks more like Tracer in the face, despite the goofy proportions.

The Nendoroid also has some accessories that the larger version really should have included as well, even if they were straight up the same pieces.  Aside from the obvious blink streak included with the Nendo, the Nendo also has the little flippy hair piece on it’s head, which was a nice little fun touch.  The pegs on the stands aren’t the same size at all, so there isn’t even a way to use the blink effect piece with the Figma.  Also notable, is that the guns are not the same between the two figures, though they are pretty close to being the same size. Aside from the guns, Tracer includes some alternate faces and a decent selection of hands and her pulse bomb.

I also have a bit of an issue with the poseability of the figure.  It’s pretty good, except for the hips, which are extremely limited by the design and the belt straps.  I’m not sure what could have been changed but the knees also don’t bend as far as they could.  Basically, a little more bend all around in the legs could have really helped Tracer pull off some of her signature poses better.  The “real” straps are nice, but I can’t help but think sculpted straps might have allowed a bit more range of motion.

Tracer is decent, overall, though I honestly think I like the Nendoroid more.  At the moment it’s the best Tracer figure available, but Hasbro has recently announced a new line of Overwatch based figures coming, and you can bet it will include Tracer.  Figma Tracer isn’t a bad figure, but it could have been better without that totally off face sculpt.

Nendoroid – Tracer

Good Smile Company makes two lines, primarily, Figma, and Nendoroid.  Both likes primarily deal with anime and video game characters.  Figma is more of a traditional style scale figure, they are generally around 1/12th scale.  Nendoroids are all “Super Deformed” Chibi designs.  Bigs heads and small bodies, sort of similar in style to something like Pop Vinyls in the US, except a zillion times better with articulation and interchangeable parts.

Nendoroid Tracer

I’m not super big on the style, and there are a lot more anime characters I don’t care about int he Nendo line than the Figma line.  That said, the first official figure from Overwatch was Nendoroid Tracer.  I like Overwatch, I play Tracer more than any character, seemed like a good figure to test out the waters on the Nendoroid line.  There’s a Figma Tracer being released later this year and Nendoroid versions of Mei and Mercy are coming up as well.

I had my doubts going into this line.  A lot of those worries were pushed away upon actually getting the figure.  She’s pretty awesome.  I can fully admit, that this style of figure isn’t going to be for everyone, but this little Tracer is pretty adorable and a lot more versatile for poses and action that I expected her to be.  Not every Nendoroid has as many joints as Tracer, only some characters get elbows, many just get swapable arms.  She also pretty much requires the stand due to the size of her head, but it’s low profile and with some work she can be posed without it.

Nendoroid Tracer

I was also worried that she was going to be smaller than she actually is.  She isn’t huge, but she fits in pretty well with some smaller Figma and Figuarts figures.  Really, given her style and related silly factor, she kind of works alright with some larger figures as well.  She would definitely fit with other Nendos since they are all roughly the same size.  She isn’t meant to be a perfect scale representation of Tracer, but she does a pretty good job of being a silly super deformed version.  She has all of the most noteworthy details like her chest piece, glasses and arm fins.  The center bit of her hair is articulated as well, so it can be adjusted a bit or to recreate her “blowing her hair” bit she does in the game.

For acessories she includes her stand, 3 faces, and several sets of hands.  She also includes a pulse bomb, and her two pistols.  The hands are made for gripping her pistols, open palms for throwing the pulse bomb or pegging the pistols on for her spin pose, and a set of closed fists.  There isn’t anyway for her to hold the pulse bomb sadly, though in game she pretty much just tosses it out and runs anyway.

She also includes a little blue plastic piece that can attach tot he stand to represent when she Blinks.  The end effect works pretty well at showing off her overall gimmick of speed and time shifting.  I kind of wish there was a second piece of the Recall Glow but I’m happy with what she came with.

Overall, I really like Nendoroid Tracer.  I’m looking forward to the upcoming Mei to go with her.  The style definitely won’t be to everyone’s taste and she is probably a little pricey for her size, but she is fun to pose and mess with and is a neat representation of the popular character.

Weekly Wednesday Haul – Cheers Luv, Sixshot Has Arrived Edition

The thing I hate most about Pre Orders is the wait.  I ordered Nendoroid Tracer back when she was first announced in February.  And now, here she is, 6+ months later.  Nendoroid is put out by Goodsmile who also makes the Figma line.  I’ve never had a Nendoroid before.  Tracer here I believe has more articulation than a standard Nendo, but the line is basically super deformed versions of various anime and video game characters.  Tracer is pretty neat, I was a little on the fence with the concept but I’m really looking forward to Mei now.

I also managed to luck into FINALLY finding Jessica Jones from the Netflix Marvel Legends Wave.  She’s pretty much as nice as I had hoped.  Too bad we’ll probably never get Killgrave.  I imagine the next Netflix Wave will give us Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and probably Kingpin, plus some other random comic dudes.

Speaking of luck, I also found several Transformers I had assumed I’d completely missed out on with Titans Returns Sixshot and Octane.  There was also a Blitzwing but my wallet can only take so much at once and frankly, while Titans Return Blitzwing looks nice, I am alright with my Combiner Wars Blitzwing.  The old Classics Octane though, that thing is a huge pile of garbage in almost every way, he seriously needs and update.

Then there’s Sixshot.  Sixshot is a character that I’ve really wanted a good figure of for a long time.  One, I like the idea and design, even if all of his modes are mediocre “modes”.  More importantly, he kills Ultra Magnus in the Japanese show, and since Ultra Magnus is one of my favorite Autobots, it seems appropriate to have a kick ass toy of his killer.  Or something.  I also just really like his overall design.  The transformation is about as expected for all of the modes, Slightly different positions for his arms and legs for the most part.

I’ve seen a lot of complaints with this guy as well but he’s decent.  I have not had any real issues aside from his submarine mode keeps wanting to flip itself over for some reason.

 

Review – Overwatch (PC, PS4, X-Box One)

The Good

  • Fun Team based Gameplay
  • Loot system that never feels like you need to buy anything (though you can)
  • Large variety in game modes

The Bad

  • No way to trade duplicate item drops with other people
  • Game can feel a little repetitive after a while, several maps feel like facelift copies of each other
  • Social aspects could use some work

In Depth

It’s really hard not to compare Overwatch to Team Fortress 2.  They have vaguely similar art styles, the game play is the same sort of class based team shooter game, and the whole attitude in design is sort of “fantastical cartoon” without seeming overly kiddified.  Having played more TF2 than probably any other title except possibly World of Warcraft, I will say they are definitely similar and definitely gunning for the same audience.  Overwatch takes some different queues though in how it works things, which help to differentiate itself a lot from TF2, which leaves some space for both titles.

If you enjoy Team Fortress 2, you will very likely enjoy Overwatch, especially if you’re like me and got driven away from TF2 once the whole economy thing became the focus of the game more than playing the game.  This touches a bit on both a good and bad aspect of Overwatch.  Item drops come in the form of loot crates, which each contain 4 items, skins, sprays, emotes, voice lines, etc.  Nothing that drops is game affecting in any way, it’s all cosmetic.  The things that you’re likely going to care about the most, ie skins, are more rare than things that are kind of useless like sprays.  As of this time, there isn’t anyway to trade items with other players.  Extra items are converted into in game currency that can be used to buy different items.  This is a good thing and a bad thing.  It’s kind of bad because I’d much rather trade an extra rare skin for a different skin I want rather than converting it into a tiny pile of coins.  It’s good be because it helps keep Overwatch from developing an economy, which personally, kind of ruined Team Fortress 2.

You can also buy Loot Boxes, they aren’t a super great price, but they aren’t overly expensive.  Unlike Battlefield 1, you get a lot of them just by playing the game, and each contains 4 items.  You get a free box for every level you gain on your account, and you can get an additional 3 boxes each week for 9 wins in Arcade Mode.  There are also seasonal ranked matches which I believe give some kind of reward in the form of loot.  There is also the currency you collect in game through drops and duplicate items, so you can simply save up and buy the specific cosmetic item that you are after for your favorite character.  The point is, you can more than get away with getting plenty of items just by playing the game.

But enough about loot, it needed mentioning, but it’s also kind of an aside to the game.

The real core of the game is of course, gameplay, and with it, the roster of characters.  It’s also where Overwatch and Team Fortress 2 really differ.  Team Fortress 2 has 9 classes, though each of these classes can be set up through different loadouts to have different play styles.  Demoman for example, plays differently than Demoknight.  Overwatch instead simply has, more characters, 23 of them, with more being added over time to add more variety.  For example, both Sombra and Ana were added after the game’s launch.  Each character is surprisingly unique in play style and design and for the most part the game is pretty well balanced.

For the most part.  Some characters are definitely more played and more powerful than others.  That isn’t to say that you won’t see every character at some point while playing.  However you’ll see way more D.Va and Roadhog than Zaraya for the Tanks.  Also, each character gets an Ultimate Ability which can be unleashed after filling a meter by dealing and taking damage and even just over time.  Ultimates such as D.Va’s exploding mechsuit are super useful at wiping out an entire team, while other’s such as Sombra’s EMP or Tracer’s lame little grenade are kind of less useful.

There is definitely enough character variety to suit any preferred play style.  Also, except in certain game modes, characters are limited to one per team, so no need to worry about having a dozen snipers hanging around in the back ala Team Fortress 2.  There’s only one real sniper, (two but one is a healer), so you’ll only have one useless player hanging around 500 miles back.

Speaking of game modes, there’s the regular Quick Play, and Arcade.  Quick Play works as you might expect, select a character, then play in one of several pretty standard play modes, control points, push a cart, king of the hill, etc.  There’s also Arcade Mode, where things get a little more varied.  Most of the maps work the same, but there are elimination modes, where you die and don’t revive, unlimited mode where there aren’t limits on how many heroes can be on a team, 1v1 matches, or even specialized holiday maps.

That said, some of the maps can get a little repetitive.  The basic designs tend to be pretty different but many of them feel like there was a punch list of features to be added, main path, side path to the right, one upper platform.  It’s kind of subtle but there’s several that feel like at a base level, they are the same map.  Like if you took out the buildings and just made everything squared out walls, you’d have identical layouts.

Things like the arcade mode really help to break this repetition up a lot though.  There are several modes available and they cycle occasionally on what’s available.  Things like Mystery Heroes, where you get a random hero each death, or All Brawls, where all sorts of crazy rules come into play.  Some of the All Brawls limit teams to certain types of heroes such as all offense only.  Some let you pick only Genji and Hanzo, the two brothers.  One of the craziest is This is Illios mode, where Roadhogs and Lucio’s battle it out over  giant pit, the goal is more to throw your opponent in the pit than kill them.

Possibly my chief real complaint is that the social system seems kind of crappy, especially coming off of Team Fortress 2.  Granted, I was admin on a Team Fortress 2 server with a forum and a community and a clan, but Blizzard as a whole just has a pretty mediocre social set up next to Steam and Valve.  This is more of a complaint with Battlenet of course than Overwatch.  For example, I can’t just friend someone by saying I am “RamenJunkie”, because Battlenet adds these lame numbers so I’m “RamenJunkie#1476”.  There also just feels like there is less of a community in Overwatch vs Team Fortress 2.  No one uses voice either, which makes things feel a little lonely.

The bottom line is, Overwatch is a lot of fun and a great game.  If you’re not into FPS games you may not like it, if you prefer some gritty “realism” FPS games you may not like it, of course, but it is a good game.  I picked up Battlefield 1 and Overwatch around the same time period, and while Battlefield 1 started out as my preferred of the two, it grew really stale, while Overwatch has grown on me as being a lot more fun, and feels like it’s going to ultimately have more staying power of these two FPS titles.