Blizzard releases the second animated short for Overwatch, with ‘Alive’ showcasing how Widowmaker gets the job done – confirming two more shorts to arrive before launch.
As with any Blizzard property, Overwatch isn’t just a game. It’s a world to be explored and Blizzard will attempt just that, with the players, to the best of the studio’s ability. For Overwatch, Blizzard is trying something different than it has before. Plans include the release of several “animated shorts” which both showcase individual characters from Overwatch, as well as expand the backstory and lore of the world. Blizzard has now released the second such animated short, “Alive.”
“Alive” is Widowmaker’s animated short, though it also features Tracer prominently. Considering these short videos will be most players’ introduction to the Overwatch universe, Blizzard focuses on character action. Both Tracer and Widowmaker show off their actual in-game abilities fully, with all the explosions and excitement that goes along with it. However, there’s also plenty of world-building content, too. In “Alive,” players get a first-hand look at the ongoing efforts to promote human and machine equality.
This is the second official animated short for Overwatch, with Blizzard also revealing that two more animated shorts will follow prior to full launch. Rumors are already swirling with regard to what characters will be featured in the next two episodes, with others wondering how Blizzard will establish the lore regarding Overwatch‘s new beginnings. One thing’s for sure: everyone’s excited for more of Blizzard’s ridiculously impressive computer animation. In this light, it’s no wonder that Blizzard opened a movie studio.
Overwatch‘s first animated short slipped through Game Rant’s fingers, but it really is an exemplary animation showcasing Blizzard’s goals and ability. “Recall” features the characters of Winston and Reaper, with flashbacks to tease the history of the Overwatch organization. It also begins the currently mysterious conflict that will likely require the reintroduction of the Overwatch force. For those wanting a deeper look at the Overwatch universe, “Recall” is a step above “Alive.”
Let’s quickly return to the previous question of where Overwatch will be going next with its animated backstories. With Winston, Reaper, Widowmaker, and Tracer all having been introduced, then who next deserves the spotlight? Many are in full support of a Hanzo + Genji short, which could perhaps go further into the human and machine rift. A Mercy and Soldier 76 short would allow Blizzard to further explore the Overwatch organization’s history. Or a Mei and D.Va short could also be interesting for fans.
Whichever direction Blizzard decides to go with its two upcoming pre-launch animated shorts (and a short comic, too), Overwatch fans will benefit. It took Team Fortress 2 years to establish any sort of narrative behind its team-based multiplayer action. Other multiplayer games like Dota 2 and League of Legends either have nonexistent narratives, or are such a mess that it’s difficult to make sense of. Blizzard’s clearly set lofty aspirations for Overwatch that go well beyond the game itself. Heck, the non-game content may likely be a greater draw than the game itself at this point.
Overwatch is scheduled for release on May 24, with an open beta running from May 5 through May 9 (pre-orderers get early access to the beta). The multiplayer shooter will be available on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 and the beta will be available on each of those platforms as well.