Post news Report article RSS Feed Overwatch, a Half-Life 2 Modification.

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  (0 - 50 of 82)
DoctorCheese Jul 2 2010 says:


+12 votes     reply to comment
Cremat0r Jul 3 2010 replied:

OMG, the design of this webpage, the look of your VGUI, everything is top, does anybody pay you for this work or are you just trying to do what other modders don't?
And by this, I mean something special, memorable, adorable, a game which is unlike others, and, yes, I mean game and not mod, because this is a completely new idea.

I appreciate your work, wish you the best luck and, hope you work hard!

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

No one pays us, we're just workaholics. All we want is to develop something that everyone will enjoy playing. For the time being, it's a mod, but who knows what the future has in store!

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

Actually, its not a completely new idea, this is a mix between Zombie Master and Iron Grip: Oppression. I used to play Iron Grip and I still play Zombie Master, but sadly, Iron Grip died almost immediately after its release >__> So now I'm happy someone else decided that the concept is golden!!! :D I will be tracking this till the end of time!! >:o

Good luck and keep up this professional level of quality ;)

+5 votes     reply to comment
smokeythebear Jul 3 2010 replied:

You never played Zombie Master? That's a crime punishible by death for anyone who owns HL2! And by death I mean missing out on the best mod ever, since the alternative is hardly living.

+1 vote     reply to comment
|.:aLn:.|Outbreak Jul 4 2010 replied:

wow, I just couldn't get into zombie master, but thats just me.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Kyou. Jul 4 2010 replied:

Yeh the design of this looks very nice

+1 vote     reply to comment
KilroyNZ Jul 2 2010 says:

Hawt stuff.

+2 votes     reply to comment
bliblix Jul 2 2010 says:

I think I just had a boner.

+1 vote     reply to comment
elite879 Jul 2 2010 says:

This is the most epic looking thing ever

+4 votes     reply to comment
Trans-Fat Jul 2 2010 says:

wow this looks like great gameplay. can't wait.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Xylemon Jul 2 2010 says:

****** awesome

+2 votes     reply to comment
MadMonkey119 Jul 2 2010 says:

Wow, nice!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Dodomaster Jul 2 2010 says:

Nice announcement for an awesome mod!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Angerfist219 Jul 2 2010 says:

Sounds like good stuff. I'll be tracking this one.

+2 votes     reply to comment
DoctorShark666 Jul 2 2010 says:

it's like visual crack, i haven't seen polish like this in source mod in a long time. i wish you guys the best of luck with your project.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Spooboy Jul 2 2010 says:

Awesome guys, I've waited anxiously sense this was first shown. I'll admit, it was a tease waiting without any news or media, but now I know it was worth keeping my eye on this!

+1 vote     reply to comment
MrMattWebb Jul 2 2010 says:

I'm glad the wait is finally over to see some ingame work. This looks like it plays like Full Spectrum Warrior, which I enjoyed. Also, a good choice on keeping it in the HL2 universe.

This looks far more promising than Nuclear Dawn (Source Engine FPS/RTS Hybrid Game) in terms of gameplay.

One question though: How is this an "indie title?"

+4 votes     reply to comment
AndY Author
AndY Jul 2 2010 replied:

Hey Korge,

I was mostly referring to our approach. We are currently a group of unpaid volunteers, but we put in the same amount of time and effort as an indie would while working on a high-profile title.

We are hoping that the success of this project will only be a first step for our team and that we'll have the opportunity to work on more projects in the future.

+3 votes   reply to comment
KindredPhantom Jul 3 2010 replied:

@korge It is too early to really tell. Only after they have both been released will you be able to tell.

0 votes     reply to comment
zeldar Jul 2 2010 says:

The custom content of a mod usually is the first thing that catches my eye, but I really like this concept. Very interesting and sounds fun to play.

-1 votes     reply to comment
Asd. Jul 2 2010 says:

HOLY ******* JESUS THIS IS ******* AWESOME ****

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

This was certanly something I wasn't specting, like i said before. Now, I think this can be pretty awesome. Anyway I not sure about this: Is this mod only MP?
Quite good stuff so far guys, I'll keep tunned for sure.

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

Yes, it is only Multiplayer.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Tatsur0 Jul 3 2010 says:

Congrats on the announcement. Looking forward to seeing more in the near future.

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

Thanks Brian, I really appreciate it.

+1 vote   reply to comment
h455566hh Jul 3 2010 says:

Hopefuly, this will be better than zombie master.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Maninblue999 Jul 3 2010 says:

Guys, this is awesome work, You should open up for donations so we can support your work.

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

As much as we appreciate that, we'd rather you put that money aside for the time being.

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

car wait gd job guys carnt wait till release

+1 vote     reply to comment
Gman366 Jul 3 2010 says:

EPIX! Cant Wait!

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

This looks awesome!!

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

Looks great, I'm going to track this mod. I hope to get to play the beta!

"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."

Epic win.

How many human players will be able to control different combine squads or will it be just 1 (Rebel) vs 1 (Combine)?

+1 vote     reply to comment
A1win Jul 3 2010 replied:

Currently, the mod allows one player as the Overwatch (RTS view) and one to seven players as the Resistance (FPS view). It will be balanced for any number of players between those.

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

Looks pretty tasty, and you know if you want you could always give some of us podcast 17 guys some closed release loving to talk about on the podcast NUDGE NUDGE WINK WINK ;)

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

Sure, send me an email and we'll work something out!

+1 vote   reply to comment
pedro0930 Jul 3 2010 says:

I think it might be cool if you allow 2 people to play Overwatch, that way he's not all lonely.

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

Very nice looking and extremely well polished and executed it would seem. I'll keep an eye on this.

0 votes     reply to comment
Twitwi Jul 3 2010 says:

I cried when i read it was only for Desura because i don't have access to that site :'(

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

I believe desura is going to be a digital distributions platform a lot like steam, so everyone will have access to it sooner or later, from what I can tell its still in some state of development you can read more about it here

+1 vote     reply to comment
Twitwi Jul 5 2010 replied:

I know that, I just want to play it now.

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

Don't worry, invites to play our mod automatically grant you access to the Desura beta. We're also working side-by-side to ensure that we both open up to the public around the same time.

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

The mod sounds interesting but sounds quite a bit like Iron Grip: The Oppression and that mod was not fun for the person playing the commander.

Also, which individual or individuals had the experience of developing Dystopia?

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

Aww KP, I'm sad that you've forgotten about me already. Don't you remember this?

+1 vote   reply to comment
KindredPhantom Jul 8 2010 replied:

Well there are a lot of Andy's..:P

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

damn it in two weeks! omg omg omg omg omg can't wait need to play this!

0 votes     reply to comment
Rain0 Jul 3 2010 says:

......Beautiful....Tracking :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
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
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