Lore can sometimes be illusive in Overwatch. Unlike other Blizzard titles like Diablo and World of Warcraft, the story of Overwatch is found outside of the immediate game. Animated shorts, comics and soundbites help to round out the backgrounds and details of the world we’re dropped into every time we escort the payload or capture the objective. In interviews, developers comment on the tone of the game juxtaposed to the tone of the story as “playing with action figures” rather than building up on actual lore.
Content creators, like Hammeh from YouTube, help to fill in the blanks for character background and general lore as more information is given to us in small bursts. The animated shorts give us insight into the modern world of Overwatch, while the comics often show us some of the past of the heroes and what leads them to where they are currently in the lore we’re given.
Unfortunately, the space between the comics and animated shorts is sporadic, often leaving more questions than answers. At times, the lore is riddled with conflicting information or vague ideas which have yet to be touched upon: the Shimada dragons, Sombra’s Illuminati-esc network seen in her reveal trailer and even the exact details surrounding the fall of Overwatch remain hard to pin down.
Hopefully, lore enthusiasts will have a clearer image of the world of Overwatch coming sooner rather than later. Earlier today, Blizzard’s Supervising Writer George Krstic tweeted out images of what could be an answer to some of the finer lore questions people have been asking.
<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>A little gift from our <a href=”https://twitter.com/Blizzard_Ent”>@Blizzard_Ent</a> publishing team! <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/overwatch?src=hash”>#overwatch</a> Good job team! <a href=”https://t.co/K8xpCaX3uZ”>pic.twitter.com/K8xpCaX3uZ</a></p>— George Krstic (@GeorgeKrstic) <a href=”https://twitter.com/GeorgeKrstic/status/832055618051600384″>February 16, 2017</a></blockquote>
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Lore books are nothing new to games steeped in deep story elements and immersive world building. Bioware’s World of Thedas comes to mind often when it comes to video game lore books, and the amount of depth and insight it gives into the world is something very appealing given how sparse concrete details have been since Overwatch’s launch.
A world guide alone could help flesh out stages we’ve become familiar with in game, and give more context as to why we should be interested in these areas. Characters who haven’t been featured outside of game can finally get some attention and be elaborated on, so we understand more of what they mean to the story of Overwatch. Mercy is one such character that’s been shrouded in misinformation; among many examples is the question of her age and how her expertise supposedly had her as a top doctor and research at an extremely young age. While Overwatch seems to be known for recruiting bright minds, no matter the age – as seen in the case of Tracer – Mercy is among the older members of Overwatch and is often seen in pictures of the original group. Alongside this, comes the questions of her involvement in Reaper’s resurrection and current state of being, and why she believes Overwatch should remain shut down. Mercy is one of the only pre-fall Overwatch members to not appear in an animated short or comic in a substantial way, and is among many characters in the lineup to not be featured outside of game.
While nothing has officially been released about a world guide, the tweet gives a little hope that the story and lore of Overwatch will become clearer as time goes on, and hasn’t fallen to the wayside as other aspects of the game have taken off.