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Brigitte Shield Charges to Overwatch on March 20th

Brigitte Shield Charges to Overwatch on March 20th

The 27th Overwatch hero, Brigitte is heading to all platforms including PS4, Xbox One, and PC on March 20th. Blizzard announced this exciting news today (3/15/18) on Twitter along with an announcement post on their blog. Players that own a PC and want to try her right now, she is currently available on the Public Test Realm.

Blizzard is calling the new hero an “engineer with peerless armor constructing abilities,” and she definitely shows her prowess when deployed on the battlefield. Her primary weapon is known as the Rocket Flail, which extends when used and can hit multiple heroes at the same time.

Along with Brigitte’s flail, she also gets a deployable Barrier Shield, which like Reinhardt can protect allies immediately behind her. She also has the ability to throw Repair Packs to heal teammates, while her passive ability, Inspire, heals all nearby allies when she deals DPS.

Blizzard Picks Up The Pace

Brigitte was officially announced by Blizzard only a couple of weeks ago and right beforehand they revealed a lore database that will host content revealing the backstory of many of their popular heroes. To start Blizzard gave some more insight into how Torbjörn lost his arm in a tear jerking letter to his wife. With the new heroes imminent arrival, we’ll be sure to show her off in action the day she becomes available to the public, so don’t forget to check out our Stream Page so you know exactly when you’ll have a chance to see this exciting new hero!

Brigitte Abilities

  • Rocket Flail – Brigitte’s melee weapon has an extended range, enabling her to strike multiple enemies with a single swing.
  • Repair Pack – Brigitte throws a Repair Pack that can heal an ally. Any healing over that ally’s maximum health provides them with armor instead.
  • Whip Shot – Brigitte throws her flail a long distance, dealing damage and knocking an enemy away from her.
  • Barrier Shield – Brigitte deploys a frontal energy barrier to absorb a limited amount of damage.
  • Shield Bash – Once her Barrier Shield is deployed, she can dash forward to stun an enemy.
  • Inspire – When she hits enemies with her flail, she also heals nearby allies over time.
  • Rally – She moves faster and provides all nearby allies with armor that lasts until it’s removed by damage.
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Blizzard Adding Lore Database to Overwatch

Blizzard Adding Lore Database to Overwatch

Blizzard is hyping up fans with more than one new teaser this week. After their cryptic tweet detailing what everyone believes to be a new hero, the company is shifting its focus toward a new lore database that will offer insight into the stories behind the worlds favorite heroes. Blizzard “released” a letter Torbjörn wrote to his wife after suffering injuries on the battlefield and this is just the beginning.

The official Overwatch Twitter account revealed the information of a rather unsuccessful mission called “White Dome.” Unfortunately, the operation didn’t go as planned and an ambush led to Reinhart having to jump in and save Torbjörn after losing his arm.

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The Lost Arm and Lore

Blizzard later updated the story to include the letter that Torbjörn wrote to his wife, Ingrid, from the hospital after the failed mission. In the letter, he assures that all is well and even jokes about the situation that led to him receiving that neat and versatile claw arm.

“I know that by now you have gotten news of my injuries in our latest mission. While the descriptions may sound terrible, the doctors are quite sure I’ll make a full recovery. Even Angela came to visit me! On the matter of my arm, I promise to make it my first priority to construct a suitable prosthesis that will make everyone forget that it was ever gone. If only Angela’s dreams of tissue regeneration were a reality! I told her she should be working harder!” (http://bit.ly/2HK4CWa)

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The letter also includes a bunch of other details on the builders family and personal life. To see it in its entirety, the full lore entry is available on the Overwatch blog. Be warned, a tissue box may be needed while reading!

Currently, the “Story Update” that Blizzard released is part of a larger ongoing archive that gives players “secret clearance” to various art, videos, and stories. The company hasn’t dedicated a section to the storytelling device as of now. However, with the fascinating tales behind the Heroes coming out rapidly it is expected they’ll have a place soon for gamers to view them.

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Microtransactions Pay Off Big For Activision Blizzard

Microtransactions Pay Off Big For Activision Blizzard

Microtransactions are a huge source of revenue for the video game publisher Activision Blizzard. The company announced today in an earnings report that revenue from “in-game net bookings,” which contains DLC sales, loot boxes, and in-app purchases on mobile games, reached $4 billion in 2017. The fourth quarter alone secured the company $1 billion for additional content sold.

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Around $2 billion of Activision Blizzard’s revenue in 2017 came from in-game net booking’s in their mobile subsidiary, King, which owns and operates Candy Crush. The other $2 billion came from Activision Blizzard’s console and PC efforts, along with the rest of their mobile ventures like Hearthstone. These two revenue streams were pointed out by Daniel Ahmad, an industry analyst, on Twitter.

More Games, More Money

Call of Duty: WWII offers microtransactions that give players their own in-game currency, Call of Duty Points. These points can then be used to purchase in-game items like loot boxes that net players cosmetics for their avatars. Additionally, Activision recently launched the first paid DLC pack, Resistance, which is being sold at $14.99 USD. In Overwatch, players spend their money on loot boxes that offer a variety of different skins and other cosmetic items. World of Warcraft also offers a vast in-game economy allowing players to spend real-world money on mounts, pets, and a host of other items.

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The Trend Continues

Microtransactions are a growing trend throughout the gaming industry with many companies jumping on the bandwagon. EA recently suffered serious backlash with their title Star Wars Battlefront II, which players believed contained a very hostile microtransaction system.

Not every modern game contains a microtransaction system. However, it is becoming a major profit earner and difficult to ignore for many businesses in the industry. Especially when Activision Blizzard was able to put up numbers like the $4 billion in revenue earned. Hopefully, gamers can continue to fight toxic systems like the one EA tried to put in place and show developers what a proper loot box structure should look like.

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Overwatch Skins Update Arrives Soon See What’s Coming

New Overwatch Skins are Around the Corner

Tomorrow marks the launch of Blizzard’s latest update to their wildly popular hero based shooter, Overwatch and it includes a ton of new looks for some of the most popular characters. Overwatch skins are some of the most sought-after collectibles in gaming, mainly because of their unique nature that not only looks nice but adds more depth to the heroes. Altogether there are 16 new skins for fans to collect and they can all be acquired through the Cosmetic Loot Boxes.

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McCree, Reaper, Junk Rat, Symetra, Orisa, Mei, Pharah, Hanzo, and Lucio are all getting new costumes that are not part of a larger set but still look incredible. Blizzard has yet to reveal the name of the new unique looks, although they typically they’re pretty creative.

Meanwhile, Roadhog, Zarya, Torbjorn, Reinhardt, Mercy, and Doomfist are all receiving new skins based on other Blizzard IP’s. The games that the updated skins are referencing include Diablo, World of Warcraft, and Starcraft. Fans of these series will all be delighted to see the hard work that went into detailing all of these skins that fit the characters perfectly.

New Skins Preview

Also included in the update is the latest addition to Overwatch’s arenas, Blizzard World. This Disney World like theme park is the newest area where players can test their skills. Blizzard World is home to tons of homages to the game developer’s greatest masterpieces and fans are sure to love all the references.

We’re very excited to try our hand at rolling the newest skins tomorrow (1/23/18)! We’ll be checking out the Overwatch skins update during the Gigamax PowerHour on Tuesday so if you’re interested in seeing what the new update has to offer come stop by or check back after it drops for the video which will be located below.

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Overwatch League Is Here: Update and Details

Overwatch League Is Here: Update and Details

This is a two-part article on Blizzards groundbreaking Overwatch League. Find the overview of Blizzards official eSports league directly below and the patch notes are located at the bottom half of the article. 

Overwatch League Is Officially Here

A year in the making, the premiere eSports circuit for the Earth-shatteringly popular first-person shooter, Overwatch has begun. The Overwatch League is an incredible step forward for the eSports community. Blizzard poured an impressive amount of resources into this initiative in order to make it happen. Featuring over 100 players, the league is made up of gamers from all around the world. Boston, Dallas, Florida, Houston, London, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, and two locations in Los Angeles will all be hosting this immense competition.

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Stage 1, week 1 begins today, January 10th. Six teams will kick off this monumental eSports competition. The event will consist of six teams competing each day from Wednesday through Saturday until the first stage concludes on February 10th. This is an arduous competition but this challenge pays off in a big way. At the end of each stage, a $125,000 prize is waiting for the winning team. The Overwatch League champions will take home a whopping $1,000,000.

To keep up with all the action, fans can follow their favorite teams and watch all the matches on overwatchleague.com

Overwatch League Update for PC, PS4, Xbox One

With the Overwatch League making its debut, Blizzard released their Overwatch update on PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Fans of the Overwatch League are going to be happy to hear that new skins based on their favorite leagues’ teams will be available. The patch includes a bunch of additional changes and bug fixes that some Zenyatta and Ana players might enjoy as well.

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Before jumping into all the changes included in the patch, Overwatch fans are in for quite a surprise. The new skins will not be available through loot boxes which has always been the norm. Instead, the new league skins can only be purchased with League Tokens.

Ranging from $5 for 100 Tokens to $100 for 2,600 Tokens, it will be quite pricey to buy the lot. Each skin will cost 100 Tokens. All the skins will cost $1,200 so it might be worth picking out your favorite teams and sticking with them. The good news is that players will automatically get 100 Tokens just for logging on while the first stage is active (Jan 10th – Feb 13th).

Character Changes

There are a few big changes coming to some characters as well and the main menu is getting an update, too. Target’s health bars will be visible to Zenyatta when Orbs of Discord and Harmony are used. Gamers will notice a new Overwatch League area in the main menu where league matches can be streamed. Console players will see some exciting changes as well. The communication wheel selections can be bound to a button and players will now be able to change the crouch mechanic to a press and hold command. Finally, Ana will have an additional setting for Friendly Aim Assist Strength to help players personalize the level of assistance when aiming at teammates.

A bunch of bug fixes is coming to the Overwatch League update, take a look at the official patch notes for additional information.

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Sources:

https://www.gamespot.com/articles/everything-you-need-to-know-about-overwatch-league/1100-6455961/

https://overwatchleague.com/en-us/

https://overwatchleague.com/en-us/schedule

 

Loot Box Madness: There’s A Right Way And Wrong Way

Loot Box Madness: There’s A Right Way And Wrong Way

The loot box trend hit the gaming community hard. Nearly every new release, especially when it comes to multiplayer games seem to have embraced this worrisome trend. Popping up more and more, gamers are beginning to get used to seeing the option to purchase in-game currency to open up these mystery chests.  However, there is both a right way and wrong way developers can go about incorporating these controversial additions into their games.

UPDATE: EA is pulling the microtransactions. According to Kotaku, EA will be suspending all microtransactions after backlash from the gaming community.  Find the latest Breaking News at the bottom of this article.

The Overwatch Effect

When taking a look at one of the world’s most popular first-person shooters, Overwatch, the loot boxes are a relatively welcomed addition. Only containing cosmetic items, players will never receive anything that will give them an advantage over other gamers. Even though they do cost real-world money, they are completely optional. Furthermore, every item that can drop can be unlocked by opening up normal loot boxes that the game gives people once a player reaches a new level.  

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The other spectacular feature that Overwatchs’ loot box systems allows the developer to do is offer all their additional content for free. There is absolutely no charge for any new characters, maps or anything else that Blizzard adds to the game and that benefits everyone involved. Even if a player never purchases a single loot box, they reap the rewards of Overwatch implementing their loot box system. Also, that same gamer that never spent a dime on loot box has the chance to unlock any skin, emote or tag the game has to offer. This is the right way to handle loot boxes.

Pay To Win

Two games, in particular, have caught fire from the video game community for their loot box practices. Starting with Shadow of War, the loot boxes are not necessary to complete the main story. Opening up their little mystery boxes have a chance to roll epic or legendary orcs that players can add to their army but these powerful orcs aren’t absolutely critical in order to progress. However, at the very end of the game (no spoilers), there’s a point where these epic orcs can cut down on hours of grinding. Without purchasing these special orcs, because honestly, that’s exactly what those loot boxes are, people need to spend dozens of hours grinding and dominating orc after orc to find a special ending.

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| BREAKING NEWS | Star Wars Battlefront II: EA Announcement 

Now moving over to the prime example of the wrong way to handle the loot box system with Star Wars Battlefront II. EA created an environment that completely favored those willing to spend money on loot boxes. Battlefield II loot crates offered in-game gun attachments or star cards that actually provided an advantage for players. Gamers that refused to purchase loot boxes wouldn’t just be leaving a new skin, or a secret ending on the table, this time it will hold people back from having an enjoyable multiplayer experience. However, EA made an announcement on 11/16/2017 at 5:24pm on Twitter that they will be turning off all microtransactions on Star Wars Battlefront II. This is breaking news and it is expected EA will make a few more announcements regarding how they will be handing in-game purchases. Gigamax will be keeping a close eye on these developments so don’t forget to stop by soon and see what’s in store. 

Below The Gigamax Crew Offers Their Impression On The Loot Box Scandal 

Let’s Not Set This Precedent 

There’s a right way and wrong way to handle the loot box situation. EA showed the worst part of the gaming industry with their loot box system. EA’s AMA on Reddit was an absolute disaster, avoiding questions and deleting comments, they know what they did. Battlefront was an absolute flop and it seems EA was trying to use the loot box system to ensure they made their money with this new game. Overwatch is an excellent example of how to handle the loot box situation, Battlefront II and Shadow of War is spitting in the faces of gamers everywhere. Businesses need to make money, but forcing people to buy in-game items with real-world money is not the right way to go about doing so.

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Moira: Overwatch’s Next DPS/Healer

Moira: Overwatch’s Next DPS/Healer

Overwatch is adding another hero to the roster and she goes by the name, Moira. Blizzard also announced a few other new additions to their ultra popular multiplayer game as part of the opening ceremony for BlizzCon 2017. Players can also expect to see a new map that the studio is calling BlizzWorld and draws reference to the studio’s other franchises such as World of Warcraft, Starcraft, and Diablo.

Meeting Moira

The biggest announcement from the opening ceremony was the addition of Moira. According to Blizzard she’s a shady scientist that has ties to the game’s evil mercenary group Talon and their operative, Reaper. As a former geneticist for the bad guys, she comes with a very unique set of skills that includes healing beams, teleports, and a variety of other bionic skills. Overwatch’s director, Jeff Kaplan, noted that fans want to see more healing based heroes and that’s why her abilities focus on aiding teammates but can also do serious damage when necessary.

A Detailed Look At The New Character

Kaplan also described her as a hybrid character, which is not typical for the game. Adding that he couldn’t wait to see the character in the hands of the players. He also jokingly described the character as “OP AF” on Overwatch’s official website where a detailed description of her specific skills that are outlined below.

  • Bionic Grasp: Using her left hand, Moira expends biotic energy to heal allies in front of her. Her right hand fires a long-range beam weapon that saps enemies’ health, healing Moira and replenishing her biotic energy.
  • Bionic Orb: Moira launches a rebounding biotic sphere; she can choose between a regeneration effect that heals the allies it passes through, or a decay effect that deals damage to enemies.
  • Fade: Moira quickly teleports a short distance.
  • Coalescence: Moira channels a long-range beam that both heals allies and bypasses barriers to damage her enemies.

Moira seems like a fun new addition to Overwatch’s fast growing roster. It is always exciting when Blizzard announces any new content for the game, mainly because everyone knows there won’t be a price tag. Moira is sure to hit the PTR soon so be sure to check back with Gigamax for more info on this interesting character!

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Have Mercy: Blizzard Buffs Popular Healer

Have Mercy: Blizzard Buffs Popular Healer

It seems that every few months Blizzard likes to change the meta for their insanely popular hero based shooter, Overwatch. This time around their monthly update includes changes to the way D.Va and Mercy operate. As of now, these updates are live on the PTR for gamers to test out and fans will notice that those aren’t the only changes.

The most robust overhaul is coming to the popular healer, Mercy, who is getting a completely different ultimate. Not to worry though, she can still resurrect people only now it’s a standard ability. Instead of reviving all her teammates with her ultimate, now it only resurrects one partner within five meters, has a 30 second cool down, and she is not invincible while casting the power.

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The Dawn of Valkyrie

Her new ultimate is aptly named Valkyrie, which according to Blizzard “unleashes the full power of Mercy’s Valkyrie suit.” This power buffs both her suit and weapons in an extraordinary way. Check out the full list of what happens when the ultimate activates:

  • Caduceus Staff: Mercy’s healing and damage boost beams now affect all allies near the targeted teammate, and the staff’s effective range has been extended
  • Caduceus Blaster: Granted infinite ammo, while simultaneously increasing damage and fire rate
  • Guardian Angel: Increased range and movement speed
  • Resurrect: Cooldown is instantly reset when Valkyrie is activated and reduced to 10s after the initial cast
  • Hover: Mercy gains the ability to fly freely, at increased movement speed
  • Regeneration (Passive): No longer interrupted when Mercy takes damage

Blizzard explains why they decided to update the beloved healer, “While resurrecting downed allies is a core part of Mercy’s gameplay, the way her Ultimate functioned was causing a number of problems,” they continued “It was frustrating to play against, and it incentivized Mercy players to hide away from important battles, instead of taking part in them. This version turns Resurrect into a single target ability. It’s still an important part of Mercy’s kit, but plays much better for both Mercy players and her enemies. Valkyrie, the new Ultimate, gives her the opportunity to make big game-making plays and opens a number of new options for her.”

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Nerf This

Also new to the update are Blizzards previously detailed and controversial changes to the way D.Va plays. To make her a more formidable attacker she’s been given a cluster of micro-missiles as well as the ability to fly and shoot at the same time. Sound a little unfair? It probably is and that’s why they are also nerfing the recharge rate of her defense matrix. Finally, the only other character change is while Reinhardt has his shield up players can click the attack button and spin the camera 360 degrees.

Overwatch fans are certainly voicing their opinions on the latest changes and as usual they range from anger to overt happiness. We hear at Gigamax just love to watch the chaos following a dramatic update to this insanely popular game. It is not surprising that fans get so emotional during these times considering how invested many players are and the competitive nature of the game.

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Overwatch’s Doomfist: Meet the Brand New Fighter

Overwatch’s Doomfist: Meet the Brand New Fighter

After a big origin story reveal last week, Blizzard surprised everyone and made the long awaited antagonist, Doomfist, playable on the Public Test Realm (PTR). This powerhouse is a welcomed addition to the already jam packed character roster. Mixing melee with a bit of ranged makes Overwatch’s Doomfist a formidable opponent. To herald the announcement, Blizzard released a short animated clip that shows the characters escape and how he got put in jail in the first place.

Dommfist: An Origin Story

Doomfist’s origin is a bit of a sad one. Once a highly intelligent and charismatic public figure, Akande Ogundimu, was born to a wealthy family that owned a prestigious prosthetic technology company. Ogundimu expanded his family’s company to new levels and in his free time dedicated his life to learning various forms of martial arts. After the big Omnic Crisis he unfortunately lost his arm which was quickly replaced with a good ol’ robot arm. But because this is a bad guy origin story, the robot arm made him ineligible in the martial arts tournaments he once held close to his heart. Eventually trying to fill this void led him into the arms of the evil mercenary company, Talon, which he quickly took over his business. After years of running the mercenary group he was taken down by our heroes over at Overwatch and locked up until his recent escape.

Overwatch's Doomfist

Combat and Abilities

Doomfist has a host of abilities available to him in order to take out the competition. His main weapon is a short range “Hand Cannon” that is like a shotgun version of the mega buster. Not very good at a distance, this gun is able to close the gap for the character to start using his Doomfist gauntlet, the real damage dealer. Doomfist is also able to close the gap with his seismic slam ability that lets him leap through the air and upon landing, nearby enemies will be dragged toward him. Once up close the anti-hero can use his rising uppercut ability to deal massive damage and launch his opponents into the air. Another handy move in his bag of tricks is the rocket punch, which deals a ton of damage after a short charge and will do even more if the enemy hits the wall. Doomfist will also gain shield charge upon successful ability hits and his devastating ultimate, meteor strike, sends the character to the sky to come crashing back down killing all that land in the blast radius.

Doomfist sounds like an awesome and unique character but that’s not surprising considering Blizzard’s recent additions to the game. This launch follows up their recent “Lunar Colony DLC” and fans can’t wait for the antagonist to be available to all. Currently, Doomfist is only available on the PTR but Gigamax will be sure to have footage when he launches on the PS4 so be sure to keep checking back for more info!

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Is Doomfist Finally Coming to Overwatch?

Is Doomfist Finally Coming to Overwatch?

After much speculation and waiting, it appears that fans may finally see Doomfist in Overwatch. This hero has been teased almost since the game’s first additional hero, Ana was introduced. From in game posters to a major celebrity visiting Blizzard’s office, players have been anticipating the much fated reveal for almost an entire year.

Overwatch’s latest PTR update suggests that all this waiting is finally over. Aptly titled “Doomfist / Summer Games” it seems Blizzard is finally ready to show off a brand new character and reintroduce the first seasonal event they held. The name for the PTR update was revealed to players that experienced crashes while using the new highlight saving feature, which lets fans save their best “Play of the Game.” After the crash, the following crash log referred to the current version of the PTR as “Doomfist / Summer Games.” As of now the reference has been removed but you can see a screenshot of the original crash log below.

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Image Source: http://bit.ly/2tLWu09

Jake Kaplan Weighs In

While the game’s director, Jake Kaplan, has stated that the summer games event could return, no one at Blizzard has said anything about Doomfist. The backstory to the character was only made clear after fans fell in love with the idea of him joining the game. This could all potentially be a joke on Blizzard’s part to extend the hype for the character or the beginning of a long series of frustrating hints, much like Sombra’s reveal. Although Blizzard never officially revealed anything, it hasn’t stopped fans from creating lore or Terry Crews from petitioning to play the character.

The introduction of Doomfist into Overwatch would be an awesome treat for next month. Recently, Blizzard stated that they would like to add something new every month. With the Lunar Colony map released last week fans were already speculating what July would hold and this could be the answer. Gigamax will be keeping a close eye on the Doomfist rumor so make sure to keep checking back for more!

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