When Blizzard announced their first Overwatch seasonal event back in August for the 2016 Summer Games, one thought immediately crossed my mind. If this what they can do for the Olympics, then what are they going to do for Halloween?
In case you don’t play Overwatch (shame on you) or you missed the summer event (again shame on you), Blizzard added extra content to Overwatch in the form of character skins, emotes, voice lines, and a new game mode for the 2016 Rio Olympics. Now while it was a nice change of pace, it had its issues. For starters the only way you could get any of the cosmetic content was through summer games loot boxes which you either earned through leveling up or buying them through microtransactions. Given the drop rate of loot boxes, it got super frustrating attempting to particular items. On top of that, the limited-time new game mode called “Lucio Ball” was essentially a clunky rip-off of Rocket League. Still, as far as first seasonal events go it was a great way to honor summer and the game’s diversity with the Olympics.
Fast forward to October 11th, 2016, and I get an answer to what Blizzard had planned for their Halloween event. And let me tell you, is it fantastic. During the “Halloween Terror” event, Overwatch gets spooky with a bunch of Halloween-themed content from October 11th to November 1st. But what’s impressive isn’t just the quality of the new cosmetic content for all the different characters, it’s the significant changes from the Summer Games event.
Once again the main way you get all this new spooky stuff is through Halloween loot boxes. However, it’s not the only way to get it now. During the event, all of the Halloween unloackables are purchasable using the currency you earn in-game. While they make it harder to get with these items as they are far more expensive than the regular unlockables, you’re not stuck getting frustrated if you’re getting a lot of duplicates and only earning in-game cash. Plus it also rewards anyone who’s been hoarding for events like this. With my luck, however, I’m still probably going to cave and spend ten bucks to get some extra loot boxes. Still, it is a definite improvement and one that was suggested by several members of the Overwatch community.
But perhaps the best part of the whole event is new game mode. Halloween Terror’s Brawl is a PvE 4-player co-op game called “Dr. Junkenstein’s Revenge.” Each player controls one of four pre-selected heroes and must survive waves of enemies while fighting Halloween themed baddies (and Witch Mercy). I’m hoping that this is later adapted to a new permanent game mode for Overwatch because this works so well. Not only is it incredibly refreshing from all the game modes we’ve been playing the last six months, but it’s also a blast to play with four of your friends. I played last night with my friends, and we were able to get through Medium difficulty, but we’re still trying to get through on Hard mode. I don’t think I’m doing it justice so if you are curious you should check it out.
The event has only been going on for a day, but I’ve loved every second of it. It’s clear that Blizzard has put a ton of thought into this. It shows not only that they’ve got plenty of ideas left for Overwatch, but that they’re listening to the community on how to improve their game. Plus the Holidays are only two months away so it won’t be too much longer until we can unlock “Winston Santa.” In the meantime, I’ve still got to try and unlock that Witch Mercy skin.