Overwatch is a game where visual language is paramount to keep the fast-moving action readable. Characters, for example, are designed so that their unique silhouettes are eye-popping even from far away. It also helps to be able to see anything literally at all—something you really come to appreciate when 90 per cent of the screen is taken up by a diabolical, all-consuming darkness that’s surely stubbed countless toes. That’s the crux of a new custom mode devised by a particularly devious player.
Recently, Overwatch player Hintboyright helped test a “flashlight” overlay program a friend made by running it on top of Overwatch. The result? A cooperative game where one player actually plays, while others – connected not via Overwatch, but rather, a web app – frantically provide them with small windows of light through a wall of darkness.
In practice, it looks like a bunch of people shining flashlights on a wall, with each light revealing a small circular sliver of a typical Overwatch game. Some choose to focus on rapidly moving enemies in front of the main player, while others focus on the environment and UI elements like ultimate charge.
Good job to the person shining a light on the player’s dwindling health at the end, though I fear their efforts were in vain.
I don’t know about you, but watching Tracer run around with her eyes obscured by a Swiss cheese blindfold, even secondhand, makes me anxious as hell. I think I just discovered a phobia I never knew I had.
For now, this is just an experiment, but I could see it making for a fun alternate way to play games – or at least novelty stream fodder. In Overwatch’s case, I’m not entirely sure it wouldn’t be against the terms of service. But if making yourself worse at an online game in the name of stupid, stumbling fun is wrong, I don’t want to be right.