Overwatch - Origins
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Panel
  • Chris Metzen is the lead creative director on Overwatch.
  • Bill Petras is the Art Director of Overwatch. He was the Art Director for World of Warcraft in the past.
  • Jeff Chamberlain is the VFX supervisor on Overwatch. He worked on the Heart of the Swarm, Wrath of the Lich King, Mists of Pandaria, Diablo III: RoS, and other Blizzard cinematics.
  • The art in the game is high quality but still has the Blizzard style.
  • The art should be vibrant, edgy, with silhouettes, as well as feeling handcrafted and detailed. Readability of the art is important.
  • Overwatch uses a new engine with new technology.
  • There was a partnership from day 1 between the cinematic team and the game artists.
  • Torbjörn was the first character that they modeled.
  • Pharah came from the idea of having a hero with a jetpack and rocket launcher. The original nickname was Rocket Dude. Exploring the story and personality of the character helped to refine the concept to what we see today. The team then worked on finding the right voice actor for the character.
  • Creating these heroes was a very team based process.
  • Warcraft started out very simple and then added in new characters, story, and art over time. Overwatch is starting from the same place, a simple beginning and lots of potential for the future in terms of story and characters.
  • The team wanted Tracer to be the centerpiece hero, as everyone on the team loved her.
  • The cinematic and in game art team both worked on Tracer at the same time, working together to refine her art.
  • The new engine and development process allowed both teams to work together to have Tracer's model in the cinematic and game be very similar.
  • Winston was a challenging model to work on, as he has a lot of movements and a rage mode that changes his movements. The model may not be complete yet.
  • Winston was also challenging to work on for the cinematics team, as there is a lot of clipping with his armor and how he moves, so the team just hid parts of the armor that aren't facing the camera to avoid clipping.
  • Widowmaker was the one of the easier characters to model.
  • The Overwatch poster is a important part of uniting the team during the development process. They started earlier in the development process, trying different layouts and less heroes, but the final product felt like it worked right the comic book style of the game. There is enough space to add more and more heroes to the poster as they are added to the game.
  • There are a few heroes on the poster that aren't part of the 12 that are playable at Blizzcon.
  • The child in the cinematic made Chris Metzen's inner six year old do cartwheels. He hopes everyone loves the game, but almost doesn't care because of how exciting it is to work on.
  • Blizzard is used to working on huge epic stories in other games, so this is a new direction for them and it is exciting. A bright, fun, heroic world that reaches for everyone's inner six year old!
  • Jeff Chamberlain claimed the project as soon as he heard the pitch.
  • The original cinematic just had the 12 boards in the image below and the story today is very similar.
  • After seeing the story pitch, Metzen said "If we don't make this story, I don't want to work here". Everyone was excited for Overwatch.
  • The team was working late one night and needed a full match to test some features. They ended up playing for hours after they started, which made them realize how much fun it was. The team was making the game because they enjoyed it, not because anyone assigned them the project.

Q&A
  • There will be plenty of diversity of hero types. They are aware people want to feel represented in game.
  • There might be Overwatch characters in Heroes of the Storm in the future.
  • The team has been working on Overwatch for roughly a year and a half, starting on the idea after the Titan team was reallocated to other games. Normally you have to spend some time pitching a game to developers, but most were in very quickly for Overwatch.
  • No real answer to if there will be collectable hats.
  • Skins sound like a good idea, but nothing to announce.
  • The actual gameplay doesn't have a big bad villain so that players can have heroes fight heroes rather than having specific villains that restrict gameplay. The deep and rich story will take place outside of the game. The story shouldn't hinder or restrict the gameplay in any way.
  • There aren't any immediate plans to add an adventure mode to the game to play each hero and explore their story, but it is something they are interested in doing.
  • The game has some similarities to TF2, but it is still a very different game. TF2 has a limited number of roles with some more customization through weapon choices. Overwatch also has some more mobility, with some heroes that can fly or use grapple hooks. Overwatch is more about hero abilities than it is about putting a crosshair over the other heroes.

This article was originally published in forum thread: Overwatch - Origins started by chaud View original post
Comments 87 Comments
  1. Restors's Avatar
    Chris? Really?
  1. Cosmophile's Avatar
    Can't wait to play.
  1. Krathdar's Avatar
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
  1. Restors's Avatar
    but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW.
    There aren't much to reveal anymore, we all discover Draenor soon enough.
  1. Evilmaniac's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
    Well the expansion is about to be released, so there isn't really much for them to say about it other than what their current goals for the game is. Plus it's good that they are focusing on making other franchises as well so they can stay relevant in a wide market especially if wow just sinks one day.
  1. ccombustable's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
    blizzcon does kinda make it seem that way... except that you have to remember they JUST expanded the WoW dev team by 50%. Way would you expand development for something your abandoning?
  1. Azizhashing's Avatar
    Its here... its true... doomsday for WoW as we know it, 100 level cap for wow myth came true... After WoD, we will get overwatch expansion pack..
  1. Jester Joe's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Restors View Post
    Chris? Really?
    Shockingly he didn't make all the voice actors himself even!
  1. minywheats's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?

    I dont see that at all. There is a new expansion in 5 days. What can they say thats not already known or will be seen in less then a week? They arent going to announce a new Expansion so there really isn't anything to say.

    There was nothing about diablo but that doesnt mean Im worried the games dying. I understand that Reaper just came out and there isnt anything new atm.

    In the words of Aaron Rogers, "relax"
  1. Shampro's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
    That is hilarious, considering they doubled thier team size for WoW and already talked about the game's future to be around for YEARS. So you just sound VERY VERY peranoid and frankly pathetic. They are a video game company, not a WoW company. Don't be afraid of change. You'll still have your WoW addiction around for along time.

    Also why the fuck does people keep forgetting that they are launching a new expansion in 4 days?
  1. CheeseSandwich's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
    I got thrown with the WC 10/20 thing, was for sure WC4 was on the cards. The "17 years ago" had me thinking, 'OK, not WoW, WC2 HD version it is, but this is THE Warcraft moment'. Then, ugh.

    Like, I don't mind the look of overwatch, but c'mon, you lead into the reveal talking about WC legacy and history and Blizz awesomeness, then you release a unheard of IP, with no word of your stalwart?? Just seems, maybe a tad, taking warcraft for granted.
  1. War30's Avatar
    So this is a carbon copy of battleborn. /clap
    Ah well I'm not into shooters.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NvUSd70QM3c
  1. Hugh Wattmate's Avatar
    The game does not look that good imo.. Looks like not much effort went into graphics and it looks nothing like cinematic quality wtf are they taking?
  1. JaceDraccus's Avatar
    Krathdar, I take your point but I'm not sure what more they could do at this point. The next expansion is out in little less than a week. What more could they say about it that would actually be new and exciting? What could they hype that hasn't been hyped already? I don't think they're abandoning ship so much as the next step is to simply let people play Warlords of Draenor.

    Maybe next year will have more WoW stuff. An update on where they're at with faster content, or maybe if they've got that sorted it'll be the next expansion. Who knows. For now, I think we should take Overwatch as a sign they're not expecting to close down any time soon.
  1. zrankfappa's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Krathdar View Post
    Does anyone else feel, especially with the lack of news yesterday, that Blizzard is starting to focus their gaze away from WoW as their flagship franchise? The feeling is that they understand it cannot sustain itself forever i suppose, so Blizzard is preemptively abandoning ship and diverting resources away from it. I wanted to say something yesterday, but was so flustered that nothing new came out about WoW. The movie is great and all, and I'm sure people love HoTS and HS, however I personally did not find either of those games worth much more than a few hours total of play, especially with DoTA 2 being a much better game in my opinion. Metzen is now split between two projects and however little that may be, it honestly feels like Blizzard is spreading themselves too thin and not supporting what got them to the top like they could be. I'd hate to see WoW get gutted and die a slow death with hollow expansions and lackluster effort. Anyone have words of encouragement or a different opinion?
    Bliz is clearly trying to expand their portfolio. One could surmise that, while WoW is still a cash cow, they are putting eggs into other baskets. Overall this makes good business sense. And the games they are adding, aren't as time intensive to maintain ...

    Their website has something like 200 job openings, which is a little troubling. It means to me that they are having difficulty getting (retaining) talent. The fact that Belf models are not complete, would indicate they are short handed, or maybe not as skilled as they once were in that area. I believe they indicated earlier this year that they were @6 months behind due to training/tools issues.

    Some of the Glassdoor reviews of Blizzard are interesting
  1. Krathdar's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Shampro View Post
    That is hilarious, considering they doubled thier team size for WoW and already talked about the game's future to be around for YEARS. So you just sound VERY VERY peranoid and frankly pathetic. They are a video game company, not a WoW company. Don't be afraid of change. You'll still have your WoW addiction around for along time.

    Also why the fuck does people keep forgetting that they are launching a new expansion in 4 days?
    I've seen plenty of your posts on the old 'Rygarius Tweets on Patch Notes' and agreed with plenty you have said before. It is a bit more pathetic of you to, in a way, attack me by incorrectly spelling (paranoid) and pathetic (really? pathetic?). I had an observation made, I work, I go to University, and I embrace change within anything that I associate with. I do not care for shooters tbh and don't see this one making me take that leap of faith yet to switch. Please learn to post constructively, you and others who value your opinion will appreciate it in the long run.
  1. Protar's Avatar
    Damn, I thought this was going to be some sort of web series.
  1. Xinkir's Avatar
    Expected it was Chris, should have been common sense after yesterday.

    I'm interested in their new engine though.
  1. CalasEU's Avatar
    Does this mean that Chris Metzen and Bill Petras will no longer work on WoW :O?
  1. Thes's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Wattmate View Post
    The game does not look that good imo.. Looks like not much effort went into graphics and it looks nothing like cinematic quality wtf are they taking?
    Does Blizzard cinematics ever look anything like the actual in-game visuals?

    Well this game looks cools. Didn't really get into TF but this might be more my cup of tea. We'll see when it launches.. I love the graphics.

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