Uncharted 4; Ultima Online; Overwatch?
While returning to UO hasn’t been either full nor devoid of nostalgia, it’s certainly been a very relaxing project. I installed the game on my first gen Surface Pro, so I can play from the living room while watching a movie with the family, since the game doesn’t require a whole lot of concentration. I’ve decided that I’ll ride out the remainder of the month’s subscription, hopefully getting as much video as possible before then since I don’t see myself sticking it out for the long haul with this game. I still appreciate UO‘s game and mechanics, but I don’t know that there’s enough opportunity (for making a name in crafting, for finding empty land to build a house, etc) to keep me interested as a solo player for very long.
So I’m not going to lie: I’m including this here for the SEO, although I doubt it’ll raise my rank much at all, since I’ve pretty much never even mentioned Overwatch…which is funny, because it seems like it’s the only thing the gaming Internet is talking about these days.
I am ambivalent about the game, as the preceding sentence might have warned you. I’m not a big fan of team-based shooters, especially in my old(er) age. I myself have fallen into the “I played Overwatch when it was called Unreal Tournament” trap a few times, but screw it — of course it’s popular because it’s Blizzard, and people go nuts over almost anything Blizzard puts out, no matter what genre it covers or what form it takes.
I will admit: the fandom is for good reason. Blizzard is good at what they do. They make things accessible, which under other, less fawning circumstances would be a statement of derision from most gamers, but people seem not to mind when Blizzard’s name is attached to it. That’s kind of where the “?” comes in on the header. I appreciate Blizzard’s craftsmanship from an execution perspective, but I’m not a fan of this latest mechanic, and I’m really turned off by the “cultish” following the company engenders.
But the thing is, there will be no way to escape Overwatch over the next few days and weeks. It will be the only thing people talk about (as it has been for many). It will be the only thing people are playing (for the most part). If Star Wars Battlefront has taught us anything it’s that if you want to get into something, if you want to ride the crest of the wave and not be overshadowed in the curl, you need to get on board when excitement is high. With some/so many/all of the people I follow on social media and on various friends lists and outlets having already pledged their undying love of the game, there will be no better time to ensure that I wouldn’t have to play with crybaby randos, if I opted to get into the game myself. I don’t expect the population of a Blizzard game to dip to life-support levels at any time in my lifetime, but my crowd is a fickle bunch, and once other games slot themselves into their rotation, Overwatch will become a safe harbor people return to, but with less priority. For me, it’ll be a game of opportunity, since I have an intense dislike of PUGs, especially in competitive games, and especially since getting a bossy jackass on the team seems to be a statistical certainty for Blizzard games with Blizzard-level popularity.
So I’m kind of torn. The game unlocks at 7PM tonight in my time zone, for which Blizzard really deserves an “attaboy” since this means that the game unlocks globally for everyone, at the same time (good luck, data center!). That right there is subtle, but I think important. I know everyone and their grandmother will be online and ready to go, and there’ll be absolutely no problem finding matches, especially with folks on my friends list. On the other hand, under any other circumstances I wouldn’t even look at this game, and I’m worried that aside from the current euphoria surrounding its launch, I might never fire it up again.