Source-Powered Asymmetric Multiplayer RTSS

Overwatch is a cooperative asymmetric multiplayer Real-Time Strategy Shooter (FPS/RTS hybrid). Overwatch is powered by the Source engine and is set in the Half-Life² universe.

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After an entire year of hard work behind closed doors, we are very pleased to announce Overwatch, a cooperative multiplayer FPS/RTS hybrid powered by the Source engine and based on the Half-Life 2 universe.

Posted by AndY on Jul 2nd, 2010

Can't Stop the Signal.
After an entire year of hard work behind closed doors, we are very pleased to announce Overwatch, a cooperative multiplayer FPS/RTS hybrid powered by the Source engine and based on the Half-Life 2 universe.

In preparation for this announcement, we have probed the minds of a few members of our community (who have since been returned to their loved ones in nearly the same condition) and have gathered a list of questions that we believe you would like answered.

To make this news post easy to read, answers are hidden by default. You can click on the question itself to make the answer appear!

Click to Enlarge

What kind of gameplay does Overwatch offer?

Overwatch pits a team of rebels playing cooperatively in first-person (the Resistance) against one player who assumes the role of commander to the Combine forces (the Overwatch), controlling units and the environment around them from a bird's-eye view.

Rebels have their usual assortment of weaponry to fight off the enemy (guns, explosives) as well as a few surprises to aid members of their own squad (ballistic shield, health packs).
The Overwatch, on the other hand, has the might of the Combine forces at his disposal, both humanoid and synth, as well as the ability to affect the world they are all in (breaching walls, collapsing escape routes).

Click to Enlarge

[+] What makes Overwatch fun and unique?

Overwatch is being built from the ground up to offer a unique playing experience each and every round. From the way we have designed our levels to the endless variety of units and abilities at the Overwatch's disposal, players will simply not be able to predict how a round will play out. Different strategies and moods on both sides will help to create a unique progression of events every time the level is played.
» Should I release a swarm of manhacks or give a group of Combine soldiers the signal to rappel down a wall and flank the rebels?
»» Should we split up and attempt to flank the Combine troops from both sides or hit them with a frontal assault?
» Should I call in my Strider or request reinforcements be brought in with dropships?

Click to Enlarge

[+] Will you be creating any assets from scratch (units, abilities, environments)?

We have intentionally restricted ourselves to only using assets from Half-Life 2, focusing entirely on developing Overwatch's gameplay and game mechanics. This has allowed us to discuss, implement and test tons of features in very short periods of time. As our primary goal is to build a feature-rich, highly polished game and release frequent updates that our community will enjoy, we will continue to use assets from the Half-Life 2 universe as we move forward.
However, we are aware of the immense potential Overwatch's gameplay would offer without such limitations and how a unique setting, combined with brand new sets of units and abilities, would be a whole lot of fun. We definitely have a plan in motion that we hope to unveil to you in the very near future.

In the meantime, Overwatch is being built with user-created content in mind. Both the game and our community site have been designed to allow for the creation of custom levels and assets that can be easily showcased and downloaded by our community. The Source modding community is one of the vastest development communities out there and we are anxious to see what they can come up with.

Click to Enlarge

[+] What can I expect now and in the future?

We are committed to building a quality title that you, our community, will enjoy for years to come. However, no matter the amount of effort and care we put into developing Overwatch, we believe that there is more to a fun, popular game than simply putting the pieces together. We will aim to keep you informed, via news posts, blogs and even simple tweets. We will be releasing updates frequently, allowing you to enjoy the new features we will be adding and giving you the opportunity to send us your feedback and suggestions.

[+] What makes you think you can accomplish all that?

I am very glad you asked. Our team is comprised of highly talented individuals with several years of experience developing and releasing some of the most popular mods including Zombie Panic: Source, Dystopia, Insurgency, Decadence, Sven Co-op and many more. We have combined our experience to develop Overwatch, which we consider to be our first indie title. We ensured that every hand-picked member of the team was willing to dedicate himself to this project, going above and beyond what a regular volunteer is usually willing to contribute.

[+] When and where can I download Overwatch?

When? Much sooner than you could ever have expected. Our first closed release is only two weeks away, exactly one year after our first build! Obviously, it is still a very early preview of all that is to come, but at the rate we are progressing (and with your help, of course), we hope to shed Overwatch's development colours very, very soon.

We will be sending out a first batch of invites on July 14th and will continue to do so on a weekly basis until our public release. Fret not! Knowing how fun it is to play Overwatch with friends, we have been working very closely with the awesome people developing Desura and they have implemented a system that will allow our players to invite a few pals to join in the fun!

Where? You guessed it. As mentioned above, we have been working side-by-side with Desura developers who have been implementing quite a few features at our request, to ensure that your playing experience is the best it can be. Frequent updates and patch releases usually involve quite a headache, but with ModDB's Desura digital distribution platform, keeping Overwatch up-to-date will be easy as pie.

[+] Where can I find more detailed information?

We are progressively rolling out different areas of our community site. We will have a few sections in the near future dedicated to serve as an information database for Overwatch. In the meantime, the details contained in this news post have been added to the About section of this profile. We will also be frequently releasing more information as we move forward, through threads on our community board, articles in our blog and even tweets on our Twitter page. Of course, we will continue to post as much information as we can right here on ModDB.

[+] How can I help?

Join our community and play Overwatch! There is no better way to help us than to enjoy the game we have worked so hard to create, taking part in community activities such as forum discussions and eventually dusting off the old Hammer editor and piecing together your very own Overwatch level.

Actually, there is a better way to help us: send us your feedback, ideas and suggestions! Our goal is to create a game our community loves, and to ensure just that, we will be actively requesting your feedback. Each and every stray idea you contribute has the potential to add an element of value to the overall experience, whether you are suggesting a new feature for the game or an improvement to our community site. Don't be shy!

One other way to contribute is to join our team! If you are itching to work long hours for immense gain, you simply will not find a better place. We have one heck of a team, one heck of a development process and infrastructure to back it up, and one heck of a project that's just a ton of fun to work on. If you believe you have what it takes, be sure to send us your resume (with a cover letter) including a link to your online portfolio to:

Not very experienced? We want you too! Find out soon how you will be able to join and gain the experience and support you need to turn your passion for game development into a potential career.

[+] This is exactly what I wanted to know. Did you abduct me and probe my mind?

No, and we will deny any such outrageous accusations.

Now, a picture may be worth a thousand words, but a video is worth OVER NINE THOUSAND words. Really. Please enjoy this brief but very nifty teaser trailer:

We hope you are all as psyched about this project as we are. The fun has just begun and we have quite a long and exciting road ahead of us. We are looking forward to soon be playing Overwatch with all of you online and to the growing number of players that will join following every update and improvement to the game.

Head over to our community board and introduce yourself! We are anxious to meet you. And yes, we have cake.

Your friendly neighborhood game developers,
Aaron, Adam, Aleksi, Andy, Brad, Dan, Daniel, Emil, Jake, John, Martin, Michael and Ryan.

Post comment Comments  (50 - 82 of 82)
DuckSauce Jul 3 2010 says:

Well, I've been holding off on replying for quite a while, since in short in some ways I was kinda ticked off about this.

But after giving it some thought and talking with some friends, I feel interested in trying the closed beta regardless and seeing for myself whether some of the "claims" are really true or not.

I've been a very much hobbyist focused modder for the past 2 years now as well as having experimented with making my own game with two different engines so far.

I don't know how you're gonna be selecting candidates though, but I'm used to thinking things through and giving out helpfull constructive critiscm when needed, but I can imagine with a fairly sized development team, you may be more interested in normal games over other developers.

Anyway, that teaser doesn't really tell me anything, but it makes me curious what it is you're hiding after 1 year of work on this, because surely that's not all you've got and that's part of my motivation to try this out, I wish to see what it is that has kept you guys so motivated and confident about this mod.

+2 votes     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 3 2010 replied:

Hey DuckSauce,

I'm curious, what exactly annoyed you about this post? And which "claims" are you hoping to validate?

Either way, consider yourself invited as I'd love to get your feedback.

The teaser is just that, a teaser. Overwatch is a long way from being complete, but we've made quite a bit of progress over the last year. The fun has only just begun, and we're not going to stop working on this until it's done.

On a side note, congrats on the public release of GraviNULL, I'll definitely be trying it out.

+2 votes   reply to comment
DuckSauce Jul 3 2010 replied:

Hmmm, that'd be a lot of things initially, even though most of them aren't entirely fair.

Mostly it's how awesome you make the mod seem, without having anything real to show for it(but this annoyance has now turned into interest :P)

The teaser as well, like I already seen someone say here or in the summary area, that could have been "faked" although I don't know why you'd do that, the effort put into this seems legit(then again, those fake tf2 updates looked pretty legit, besides being crazy, this isn't crazy though!)

I suppose there were a few other things, but I feel they're unfair after thinking this through, especially with knowing this little information.

On a more positive note, I've never seen that usage of the clicking of titles to reveal text on ModDB yet, I think that was an awesome way to present a lot of text to the players.

This newspost also made me think about using a similar way to boost popularity, in other words, pretty concept/promotional art, even if it's not really like that in game, it seems to really hype people for some reason.

Any chance I could get in touch with the creator of those pictures?

Lastly, thanks for the congrats, it's not the first public release mind, the alpha came before it, but the beta marks a step where me and the team will likely be churning out some smaller updates faster :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 3 2010 replied:

We're obviously very excited to announce our project and we wanted everyone to feel that while reading the news post.

Under normal circumstances, I'd agree with your concerns. However, we're not going to be showing "cool stuff" and creating hype for years on end before a release (our first release is in two weeks). Our primary goal was to get people interested enough (as you are) to join our community, give Overwatch a try, and hopefully send us any and every kind of feedback they can possibly have.

Aside from that, believe me when I say that we've put the same kind of care and effort into the mod as we did in this news post. We take our commitments to the project and our community very seriously and we will not disappoint.

+2 votes   reply to comment
DuckSauce Jul 3 2010 replied:

Well that's great, I've just heard from Henley on Podcast 17(live now) that you ahd some solid stuff going a few months back, so I'm starting to get pretty hyped into what those bigger plans were he mentioned :P

Like I've said though, some of my concerns and issues may have been "unfair", don't feel too bad about them, if you really have your stuff in order, I'll be trying my best to help with what I can reasonably do(I'm busy with GraviNULL after all). I'm also hoping to learn a few things from you, like how I learn about the potential of using the spoiler function.

+1 vote     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 3 2010 replied:

Feel bad about it? Never. Any feedback is good feedback, and I appreciate you taking the time to voice your concerns. I'm definitely looking forward to reading your comments once you've had a chance to play.

+1 vote   reply to comment
freredarme Jul 3 2010 says:

Nice work, nice idea ! Good luck

+1 vote     reply to comment
Chinka Jul 3 2010 says:

FPS and RTS in one, and on Source engine, yay! :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
|.:aLn:.|Outbreak Jul 3 2010 says:

Awesome work guys, but I ******* hate chuck norris

+1 vote     reply to comment
[.BMT.] Jul 3 2010 replied:

You're not alone fella.

+1 vote     reply to comment
FJS Jul 3 2010 says:

OMG this is just too awsome!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Wonkehcheetah Jul 3 2010 says:

will you be able to send striders after the rebels?

+1 vote     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 3 2010 replied:

In certain maps, yes.

+2 votes   reply to comment
Wolf0x Jul 3 2010 says:

Looks pretty epic

+1 vote     reply to comment
DarkLiberator Jul 3 2010 says:

I'd also like to see a full length trailer of the gameplay.

+1 vote     reply to comment
[.BMT.] Jul 3 2010 replied:

There's a very high probability you'll see that in the future, just be patient ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Ragora Jul 3 2010 says:

Holy ... that is simply amazing. I would like this as its own separate game.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Whizzard Jul 3 2010 says:

Ooh, aah! Amazing!

I'm going to watch it carefully, please please our visual and auditory senses with equally captivating information in the future.

+1 vote     reply to comment
CaptainLagfail Jul 3 2010 says:

I've been waiting for a game like this for years.

FPS vs RTS is a brilliant concept that has yet to be implemented well, though I think you guys can do it!

I just hope you balance spawns well enough. Don't want the equivalent of every zombie in an entire L4D campaign camping at the finishing line, if you get my drift ^^
(Or do we? X players vs X hundreds of combine in a swarm.... hmmm.... *reload*)

Love the comedy in the video too. You should implement a random teleporting error that kills combine in silly ways in-game too xD

+1 vote     reply to comment
NullSoldier Jul 3 2010 says:

Don't you just love these awesome ninja mods that appear out of nowhere? It's really the ideal way to make games.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Killer_man_1996 Jul 3 2010 says:

Nice! Now we just have to wait 2 weeks!

+1 vote     reply to comment
joshvaliant Jul 4 2010 says:

Hey, nice looking mod you've got goin on here. Lots of potential. i like the effort being seen here and i'd be glad to participate when the time comes.

+1 vote     reply to comment
NikolaiChekhov Jul 4 2010 says:

Holy jesus, this mod is awesome sauce. I'm definitely tracking this! :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
xXMaNiAcXx Jul 6 2010 says:

Wow... you were late to release info to this mod, but when you released, you owned. I just love your idea, reminds me of Zombie Master, which forced teamplay and made me have fun for almost a year, with only less them 40 servers and not updated... now imagine this mod... no words, I will track you and if you want someone to brainstorm with, PM me.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Sixers2329 Jul 6 2010 says:

Wow this looks dead sexy. Is it slightly cel shaded? I can't really tell from the video, but it seems like it would be cool.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Novfanaion Jul 6 2010 says:

Steam release? Eh? Eh?

+1 vote     reply to comment
wowza Jul 8 2010 says:

This looks amazing... How will you distribute the invites once the beta starts? Do I have to register on the site's forums, be a Desura beta tester, or something?

+1 vote     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 8 2010 replied:

I'll be talking about that in tomorrow's news post. Stay tuned :)

+1 vote   reply to comment
dkbyhr Jul 9 2010 says:

sooo awesome im looking forward to play thes, and i wish you guys all good luck with the mod

+1 vote     reply to comment
Behemoth91 Jul 10 2010 says:

Wow this reminds me of Iro Grip: TO also source engine.
Too bad the AI of the soldiers was not so well, interested in seeing how you'll handle it.
Looking forward to public release

+1 vote     reply to comment
Spartanz1170 Jul 10 2010 says:

The gameplay to me is like this

Left 4 Dead (With many survivors)
and 1 lucky man gets to control the Director AI ( Overwatch)
I like it :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
Gen.Kenobi Jul 14 2010 says:


As a RTS enthusiastic player & modder [C&C] and as a Half-Life fan, i'd like to say thank you for this awesome mod. I can't wait it to be realesed. Everything looks so good and professional, that really make us all belive that one day, it'll see the sun-light.

Congratualations and PLEASE don't die before or after realesing the mod ;)

i read you guys are with a Closed Beta invite...what can i do to be invited? :P

+1 vote     reply to comment
Me.hungry Jul 16 2010 says:

Looks like an amazing mod with great Tracking

+1 vote     reply to comment
Zaqq_the Aug 21 2010 says:

Please write about requirements. Do you need HL2 for that mod, or other Source powered game is suitable?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Chezzlor Nov 30 2010 says:

This has to be one of the most professional mods and team I have ever seen. Also, the presentation of the mod is amazing. Is this a budgeted project?

+1 vote     reply to comment
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