Not only is Overwatch Blizzard's first-ever first-person shooter, it's also one of the first games the PC-centric studio plans to release simultaneously on consoles. That puts it pretty far outside of Blizzard's comfort zone, but assistant game director Aaron Keller told me at PAX East that the studio wasn't on its own. If lining up a headshot in Overwatch feels comfortably familiar, you can thank the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 people.
"We actually worked with some of the Treyarch guys to make sure our aim assist [on controllers] felt really good, they were really helpful," Keller told me at PAX East. If you're not familiar with the terminology, aim assist isn't "auto aim" - it's just the game making it a bit easier to keep your crosshairs on the target. It's frequently used in console shooters, and it's the sort of thing that the Black Ops team would be quite familiar with.
"The funny thing is, we collaborate with a lot of different Activision studios," Keller said. "We collaborate with the Destiny team, when they were building Destiny they wanted to talk to some of the people at World of Warcraft to see how they made some of their content. And we've gone to Treyarch a number of times and talked to them, whether it's about some of their guts of the engine features, or whether it's about tuning changes. And they've come out and looked at some of our stuff, too."
Keller also told me that Blizzard will "strive to have as much parity as possible" for game updates across platforms. In other words, you shouldn't have to worry about the PC version getting cool new stuff while the consoles lag weeks or months behind (or years, in Team Fortress 2's case).
"With big updates we want them to be as close to same-day ship on all of them, across our three platforms. As far as smaller updates go, or bug fixes, that could change a little bit. Some of it's just due to the nature of the platforms, they have different code bases."
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