After what seems like a very long time since Overwatch’s The Summer Games, Blizzard has presented us with an absolute treat (rather than a trick). The Overwatch Halloween Terror update is here, until the 1st of November.
In what seems to be the ongoing theme for past and future Overwatch updates, we’ve been hit with another Loot Box to get our fill of goodies from. Our Overwatch roster has been overhauled with spooky skins, highlight intros, voice lines – the lot. Skulls, pumpkins and the undead have made their place known amongst the 12 new skins, alongside Reinhardt doing his best Mr. Freeze impression and that Mercy skin.
Clearly taking some feedback on board after the last update, Blizzard have made it so players are now able to purchase these new legendary skins for 3000 in-game coins, with the other new items also buyable, be it at a higher price than usual. So fret not if you don’t get your favourite skin in a Loot Box, there is another way.
However, even with some new comestic items to keep players interested, it’s the new Brawl that’s really stolen the show, and even comes with its own backstory. Junkenstein’s Revenge is a new PvE Brawl that allows four players to work together to defeat the evil Dr. Jamison Junkenstein, his three fearsome friends and a host of Zomnics.
The Brawl is set in an alternative, horror-esque Eichenwalde, a world inhabited by the deranged inventor Dr. Junkenstein, a scientist in the former employ of the Lord of Adlersbrunn. A desire to create artificial life saw the Lord ridicule and banish Junkenstein from his side, a decision that saw the Doctor seek revenge upon the Lord and his castle for his dismissal, only not before he was guided by a mysterious visitor to create the artificial life he so badly sought; a new creation named Junkenstein’s Monster. See the story for yourself in the ‘Junkenstein’ Digital Comic.
To defend the castle, take up arms as the Gunslinger (McCree), the Soldier (Soldier: 76), the Alchemist (Ana) or the Archer (Hanzo). Overwatch’s first co-op game mode requires you to work together to push back waves of Zomnics from destorying the gates. Use your hero’s abilities to keep one another alive long enough to see yourself pitted against Dr. Junkenstein’s entourage of The Reaper, Junkenstein’s Monster, The Witch and even the Doctor himself. Foes become more deadly as time goes on, and The Witch has a nasty surprise in store for you if you survive long enough against these bosses.
The Reaper must be destroyed quickly, or else he’ll devastate you with his CQC damage; Junkenstein’s Monster will heal himself enough to distract you from the other enemies you really should be keeping an eye on; Dr Junkenstein will litter the battlefield with his bombs, turning the castle into a minefield; and The Witch will bring all of those elements into play in one devastating swoop. Ultimates charge quickly in this arena, so don’t be sparing with them, and let your team know when you’re charged up. That Nano Boost will come in handy when the time is right.
It’s a game mode that certainly provides something fresh for players. It’s certainly not brimming with a great deal of scope; there’s no new areas to roam, the waves of Zomnics come from a select few channels and we’re limited to only a few heroes. Yet it’s always fun to just shoot masses of enemies, seeing those points rack up and the brilliant narration within the Brawl will make it seem as though you are part of your own horror novel. The hard difficulty actually feels hard (at least to me) with increasingly powerful foes and co-op seems to ease some of the tension we have for other players in the game. Whilst we may never have the perfect team beside us, I find the fun in these survival/horde defense game modes is the desire to keep on trying until we can breathe that sigh of relief at the sight of victory.
If nothing else, it’s a game mode that lets us know that Blizzard is still trying to keep things fresh, with this already being the second major update in the game’s first year of its life. It’s the perfect kind of Brawl to keep things ticking over for a few weeks, to get players logging back in and hopefully prolong the life of a thriving community. The use of an existing map is somewhat refreshing also; we recognise the setting, but the Halloween veil they have thrown over it gives it an entirely different feel. The main question I have here is, having already seen Lucioball coincide with The Summer Games, can we expect a new style of play with each major update?
There are also four achievements up for grabs whilst playing this Brawl which will unlock new limited-time sprays:
- Survived the Night – Win on medium difficulty.
- Not A Scratch – Win on medium difficulty with no damage dealt to the castle door.
- Held the Door – Win on hard difficulty.
- Four They Were – Win using each of the four heroes available.
Let me know if you’re enjoying this new Brawl, or even let me know what style of Brawl you might expect to see with future updates!
Image sources: Blizzard Entertainment