Alec Grant-Overwatch

Alec Grant, a Paralegal major, loves putting his free time into Overwatch, the popular team shooter from Blizzard Entertainment.

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Overwatch © Blizzard

“I got into the game in early October,” said Grant.

“I feel that what got this game as big as it is is because of Blizzard. This game is very similar to Battleborn, which is a fun game in it’s own, but because this was made by Blizzard, Overwatch completely overshadowed it,” said Grant.

Blizzard is responsible for World of Warcraft, the most popular MMO in gaming history, so Grant has an argument to be made here. Regardless, he loves playing the game.

“I main Reaper and Roadhog,” said Grant. “The characters I hate the most are Bastion, because people keep spamming his turret form, and Tracer since she moves too fast for me to get a good shot.”

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Reaper © Blizzard

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Roadhog © Blizzard

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Tracer © Blizzard

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Bastion © Blizzard

Disclaimer: All images are courtesy of the official Overwatch wikia.

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Bonus article- My opinion on Overwatch

Note: The following article is what was published in Eastern Kentucky University’s newspaper, The Eastern Progress. I wrote the article for the newspaper’s ‘Opinions’ column. I’m placing it here to showcase my opinion on the popular shooter. Enjoy!

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Overwatch © Blizzard Entertainment

 

I’ve never been a big fan of multiplayer games, except for Smash Bros., and so I didn’t really pay much attention to Blizzard’s first go at a first person shooter, Overwatch when it came out. It looked like another version of Valve’s Team Fortress 2, and I’m not very good at that game. I can play the Heavy and Sniper characters fine, but everyone else is better than me, and the players bullying me didn’t help anything.

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Team Fortress 2 © Valve

I saw the trailers, I saw the gameplay, and I heard my friends talking about it until finally my curiosity got the better of me. I bought the base game, no special features or anything, for $40. I went to the Game Cave, fired it up, and prepared for the worst.

This game completely blew me away. I was able to pick it up rather easily and complete some AI and Player matches with some good scores. I’m still not that great at it, but I’ve gotten a few “Play of the Games” to my credit, so I must be doing something right.

I think what Overwatch has over TF2 is that there are more play styles for people to experiment with. TF2 has 9 characters, each with their own gimmick (Pyro, Sniper, Medic, etc.) and that’s it. If you’re not good at that character, then that’s all she wrote. In Overwatch, there’s different options for people to try. Reaper and Roadhog both use shotguns, but they play differently, so people can find something that suits them.

I love playing as Tracer and Reaper for dishing out the pain, Mei for confounding everyone with her ice-based attacks (and plethora of ice puns), Mercy when I’m the designated healer, and Roadhog is my main character, using his chain to bring people closer to me for a good shot. In addition, he can heal himself if need be. This game offers more options than TF2, and I’ll admit it has me hooked.

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Mei © Blizzard

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Mercy © Blizzard

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Reaper © Blizzard

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Roadhog © Blizzard

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Tracer © Blizzard

For more of an idea of what I mean through this article, watch the following review of the game by Somecallmejohnny. I believe he sums it up quite nicely.

Disclaimer: Team Fortress picture courtesy of the Team Fortress 2 wikia.

All Overwatch pictures courtesy of Overwatch wikia.

Youtube video courtesy of Juan Ortiz, aka Somecallmejohnny.

Phoenix Lee Covington-SMITE

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If you see Graphic Design major Phoenix Lee Covington in Powell, chances are he’s playing the popular MOBA game, SMITE.

The point of SMITE is very similar to League of Legends-destroy objective before your opponents do-except there’s one major difference: In LoL, the game is at a top down perspective, so all you needed was the mouse to move. In SMITE, the game is at a 3rd person view, requiring more use of the keyboard.

“I’ve been playing SMITE for 4 years, ever since a friend referred me to it,” said Covington.

The game has a variety of characters, centered around 5 classes: Hunter, Assassin, Warrior, Mage, and Guardian.

“I usually play as the warrior character, Sun Wu-Kong,” said Covington.

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Sun Wu-Kong © SMITE

“Something else about SMITE is that you might get teamed up with your friends, but it’s completely random who your teammates are,” said Covington.

Disclaimer: Image provided by the Smite wikia.

Max Soto-League of Legends

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When not working on his Computer Science classes, Junior Max Soto can be found at the Game Cave sharpening his skills at the popular RTS (Real Time Strategy) game League of Legends.

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League of Legends © Riot Games

A free to play game, LoL has a simple goal: 5v5 matches, destroy the opponent’s base while stopping the opposition from doing the same to you. The selling point is that there are over 100 champions to choose from, spanning 5 classes.

Soto got into the game after watching his friends playing it.

“I decided one day to give it a shot,” Soto said. “I’ve been playing for 3 years now.”

While Soto tries out many different characters, he loves playing as Kled.

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Kled © Riot Games

While Soto enjoys the game, he has been frustrated by it more times then he cares to admit.

“It comes down to your team,” said Soto. “Either they listen to you, or they blame you.”

Disclaimer: Image 1 provided by TechCrunch.com.

Image 2 provided by https://cdn0.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/h8o-b_q66aIX8r4A-PTPxsVTELU=/156×0:1035×586/1310×873/cdn0.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_image/image/50173461/Cn54tt8UsAArkne.0.jpg

Eric Justice – Super Smash Bros.

Eric Justice is another EKU student that loves delving into the world of Super Smash Bros. and has done so as far back as the original game on the Nintendo 64. In that game and it’s sequel Super Smash Bros. Melee, Justice played as Captain Falcon, the main character from Nintendo’s F-Zero racing series.

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Captain Falcon ©Nintendo

“I think he was such an iconic part of Smash with his trademark FALCON PAWWNCH,” said Justice.

Justice continued playing who he liked, but after losing his first tournament, he learned of the concept of tiers.

“…after getting rolled at the first tournament I ever attended I quickly found out that competitively, some characters are just better than others.”

For Brawl, the top tiered character was Meta Knight from the Kirby series. Some would argue that Meta Knight was a broken character (unfairly overpowered) and should’ve been banned in tournaments, though this was balanced out in Smash for Wii U and 3DS.

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Meta Knight (Kirby series) ©Nintendo

Justice decided to go back to using Captain Falcon and Marth from the Fire Emblem series, but with the inclusion of DLC characters, Justice immediately jumped at two in particular: Mewtwo from the Pokemon series, and Cloud from Final Fantasy VII.

“Even though he was subsequently buffed, I found Mewtwo to be a very fun character to play with from the start. For me his strategy was a mix of mind games, and speed, keeping your opponent on their toes never knowing if they would get hit by a rogue shadow ball, or tossed off the stage with his kill throws,” said Justice.

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Mewtwo, the Genetic Pokemon ©Nintendo

I would place Cloud comfortably on top as the best swordsman in Smash. I downloaded him day 1 and have been playing as him ever since. Cloud is definitely a mixed bag. He rewards a skilled hand, but suffers just as bad as Little Mac if you let him get tossed around.”

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Cloud Strife ©Square Enix

Abigail Smith – Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

Abigail Smith is another EKU student that loves Smash Bros., but rather than go for the direct attack, she goes for a technical bout with her main character, Robin, from the Fire Emblem series.

Robin (male and female forms) from Fire Emblem ©Nintendo

Robin’s method of attack is using tomes to attack with fire, wind, electricity, and even dark magic to drain health from others. Robin also has a sword that can deal increased damage and knockback. The downside is that these tomes and sword have a limited number of uses until they need a cooldown period.

Robin’s electric tome can be executed in 4 different styles, ranging from a small lightning bolt to a fully-charged beam that can hit multiple enemies.

That being said, Robin is Abigail’s main for 1v1 matches, and rarely uses him for free for all battles.

“No way am I playing Robin in FFA. I don’t want to ruin my 1v1 skill with him,” said Abigail.

In free for all’s, Abigail tries a variety of characters, most notably Captain Olimar from Nintendo’s Pikmin series.

Captain Olimar from Pikmin ©Nintendo

Olimar uses his Pikmin to attack, each one having a different element. For example, red Pikmin deal fire damage, while purple Pikmin are raw power. Abigail prefer’s blue Pikmin, who deal more throwing damage than the others, which is what she leans towards.

Disclaimer: Pikmin and Fire Emblem are properties of Nintendo. Images provided from the Fire Emblem and Pikmin wikia’s, respectively.

Victor Dixon: The Last of Us Online

image1-1Whenever he’s not doing homework for his Criminal Justice classes, Victor Dixon is doing his damnedest to bring victory to his Faction in The Last of Us Online.

The Last of Us is a critically acclaimed survival horror action-adventure game in which society has broken down after a mutated Cordyceps outbreak turns people into cannibalistic monsters. People are left to fend for themselves, scavenging what resources they can, and the Online mode taps into this aspect.

 

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A tarantula affected by the Cordyceps fungus. In real life, the fungus infects insects such as ants and spiders, taking control of the insect, then killing it and releasing spores to infect more.

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In The Last of Us, a mutated strain of cordyceps has begun infecting humans, turning them into cannibalistic monsters known as Clickers, seen here. Completely blinded by the fungus, they track prey through echolocation, a trait that can be exploited in the single player campaign. 

The Online mode has players select one of two Factions: Hunters or Fireflies. Players then battle in either Supply Raid, killing opposing players and finding supplies; Survivors, a battle to see who’s left standing; and Interrogation, which is like a mixture of the two. Unlike other multiplayer modes like Call of Duty or Battlefield, health doesn’t regenerate automatically. Unless you take the time to heal yourself up, you can be killed in a mere one or two shots.

“I started playing this about 3-4 years ago,” says Dixon. “I play stealth when I can get away with it, but I’ll be loud when I have to.” Dixon mainly uses a bow and arrow for silent kills, but always carries a revolver and molotov cocktails & smoke bombs if his cover’s blown.

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The bow is the go-to stealth weapon for handling enemies when a silent takedown isn’t an option. Note the arc of the bow, which helps guide the main character Joel, into making as accurate a shot as possible.

“The reality escape is the best part of this game mode, though it can get frustrating easily,” says Dixon. He remembers many times when someone just barely sidestepped an arrow, leaving him a sitting duck.

Photo’s 1 and 3 courtesy of the The Last of Us wiki. Photo 2 courtesy of DeviantArt user “thomaswievegg.”

Andrew Mikkelson: Super Smash Bros.

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Any EKU students that play Super Smash Bros. should fear Andrew Mikkelson and his unforgiving “spike” strategy.

Each character in the game has a Meteor Attack or “spike”- an attack that can send enemies straight down if hit in mid-air. Mikkelson mainly uses Samus from the Metroid franchise, who’s Meteor Attack is swinging her arm cannon downwards.

Here’s a video showing various Samus spikes.

“My strategy with Samus is to get them off the side of the stage and hunt for the spike,” Mikkelson said.

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Samus Aran (Metroid series) ©Nintendo

Mikkelson has also practiced with other characters to keep his opponents guessing.

“I also play as Meta Knight in Brawl, and Ganondorf in Project M and Smash for Wii U.”

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Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda series) ©Nintendo

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Meta Knight (Kirby series) ©Nintendo

Mikkelson tends to focus on kicks and powerful Smash attacks with Ganondorf, the main villian of The Legend of Zelda, and incorporates a “hit-and-run” strategy with Meta Knight from the Kirby series, landing small, continuous hits while keeping out of range until he can land a powerful finishing blow.

Disclaimer: All images belong to Nintendo. Youtube video uploaded by Youtube user “JesusGames5050.”