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Overwatch Legendary Edition (Switch) Review

November 14, 2019 | Posted by Marc Morrison
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Overwatch Legendary Edition (Switch) Review  

Overwatch on the Nintendo Switch is what you might expect: a portable version of the game running on a lower-end piece of hardware that has had certain reductions in quality to make it actually perform well. It’s nice that it is on the console at all although a big omission here means it is ultimately the least attractive version of the game to play, especially given recent announcements.

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Most, if not all people already know Overwatch but if you’re one of the three that don’t, here’s the gist. Overwatch is a competitive/cooperative character based online shooter. While there are just general death-match modes (Free For All), the main gameplay mode is doing cooperative modes with either random people or friends.

There are a few different, but generally basic, cooperative modes:

Assault: This mode has you and your team either attacking or defending a certain area. If attacking, you need to stay within the highlighted area until you control it. If defending, it is your job to kill the enemy team to keep the point out of their control. There are two points to attack (or defend), and when either both points are controlled, or when the time runs out, the match is over.

Control: Control could almost be considered an Assault modifier. In this mode there is one neutral point in the map that has to be captured. Either team can capture it and once they do, they become the defenders while the other team is the attackers. They are trying to get 100% control of it, with the rate of capture going up steadily as long as they remain in control. If they lose control and the other team claims it, then their own percentage will start going up. You typically play two rounds of this, unless a tie-breaker is needed to be played.

Escort: In TF2 parlance, this would be the “Payload” game type. The attacking team must escort a vehicle on a track to certain stops on the map. The vehicle will only move when team members are on it, or near it. The defending team is trying to stop the payload from moving by killing the attacking team, or slowing them down to drain the clock. If the payload crosses the delivery points, more time will be added to the clock to give players more time to either keep the payload moving, or to stop it.

Hybrid: Finally there is Hybrid, which as you might guess, is a mash-up of two different modes. The only Hybrid matches start with an Assault round then become an Escort mode.

Before I go into the different classes and characters, I’ll breakdown what most characters typically have. Most (not all but most) characters have a primary offensive attack, a utility attack, a mobility move, and a self-heal. Not every character fits into this archetype but a lot of them have a combination of these concepts.

So, take a character like Roadhog. He has a shotgun and a longer-range grenade launcher as his primary attacks. For his utility attack, he has a chain that he can throw out to bring enemies close to him, and his self-heal is a gas-mask move that regenerates his health. So, he doesn’t have a mobility move, but another character might.

Lastly, every character also has an ultimate move. This is usually a devastating move that can either clear out a lot of enemies, heal players, or massively improve their own performance. This is locked by how well you perform in the round. It gradually goes up regardless, but the better you player, the quicker it will increase so you can use the move more frequently.

There are three classes of characters: Tank, Support (Healer) and Damage, the usual trinity when it comes to gaming. Tanks and Support have about 7 characters each (Tanks have 1 more due to recent DLC) while Damage has 16. So…the number of Damage characters is technically over half the Tank/Support characters combined.

Typically, there are characters in each class that are fairly new-player friendly: Soldier 76, for example, has a fairly straightforward gameplay style that most anyone can play. A character like Wrecking Ball, who can fire grappling hooks around the stage and turn into a Samus Morph Ball, can really take some getting used to.

This is all the general basics of Overwatch. There are a lot of characters for you to try out, maps to play on, people to give endorsements to and so on. There are three problems with the Switch port of the game, one minor and two fairly major.

The minor problem is, of course, that it doesn’t run as well as on PC (where I also have the game), or even PS4/XB1. This is to be expected, given the Switch technical limitations, but the game does feel a bit more laggy and swimmy (due to the 30 FPS lock). It’s also blurrier and generally not as good looking, but again, this should be expected given the history of these things.

The first major problem though is the lack of any new content for the Switch version. The only added thing are some truly terrible Motion/Gyro controls, which you should turn off at once. There isn’t any Nintendo-exclusive content at all. Hell, even Diablo 3 on Switch managed some Amiibo content, Ganondorf cosmetic armor, a pair of wings and a Cucco as a pet. With Overwatch you get…3 months of Nintendo Online , the bad motion controls and uh….that’s it. I wouldn’t say every character needs a Nintendo skin, although a Mario-skin for Torbjorn would be great, but it’s just about the laziest port I’ve ever seen Blizzard do, which leads us to…

Here is the real, biggest problem of Overwatch on the Switch: there is no cross-platform account sharing. Now I know, Blizzard didn’t do this with Diablo 3 but at least with that game there is an aspect of building a character, getting loot, etc. Here, it’s all cosmetic stuff. None of it is gameplay relevant at all.

Again, you can make the argument that Blizzard (still) haven’t done this with the over versions of Overwatch. You can’t suddenly jump from the PS4 version to the Xbox One version and expect to keep your stuff, and the same goes for PC.

My counter to this, especially in light of the recent Overwatch 2 announcement is: WHY NOT?! Even if you take consoles off the plate, this game for damn sure should have had cross-account progress with the PC version. You should be able to log into your Blizzard account and it go “Oh, you have 4 Mercy skins, 5 Junkrat sprays, and 683 Tracer dialog lines. Would you like to import your collection into the Switch version?”

THIS is the actual biggest problem in the game. Overwatch is over 3 years old now, who is really going to go “Well, time to ditch my player level and collection on the PS4 version, that I’ve built up (and probably) spent money on, time to restart on the Switch!”? No one. Unless the person literally has no other console, I cannot fathom why they would get this version of Overwatch over any other version, especially if they have played it before.

6.0
The final score: review Average
The 411
If Overwatch on Switch had inventory-sharing with the other consoles versions (or at least PC) it would be a fairly easy game to recommend if you want a slightly nerfed but still decent version of the game. Because it doesn’t have this though, and it’s one token Golden Lootbox isn’t enough, I see no reason to grab this edition if you have the game anywhere else in your life. If the Switch is your only console, it’s passable enough, but even then, you probably won’t have the greatest time with it.
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Overwatch, Marc Morrison