This Just In: Blizzard bodyblocks Gearbox


Remember when Overwatch came out? There was that other game that came out around the same time … what was it called again? Made by Gearbox, developers of Borderlands? Oh yeah, Battleborn! I wrote a piece that year about how dropping Battleborn at the same time as Overwatch was such a poor idea. Battleborn was a very cool concept for a game, written very well, with awesome characters, with a PVP mode as it’s featured centerpiece. Overwatch by Blizzard, is a very cool concept for a shooter, with memorable characters, and PVP as it’s centerpiece. So what’s the beef? Blizzard doesn’t care to have competition. As I said back then, it’s best to let companies like Blizzard just have their day. I think if they would have released Battleborn a little later, it could have been competitive. However, it sank to the bottom of the sea, to obscurity, despite attempts to resurrect it. Now Gearbox is trying a Free Trial for the game, where you can give certain modes a playthrough with a cast of rotating characters. Great, right?


Well, it would be. But at the very same time, when this was announced, Blizzard announced that Overwatch would be doing its very first ever double exp event weekend. They’re going to take hits on loot chest sales just to punish Gearbox for daring to stand against them. This weekend, Overwatch will be doing double exp, which is going to be insane for people who group up with their friends. Will they even think about Battleborn? Probably not. And after the event is over, they’ll probably be wallowing in all of their new, cool loot in Overwatch and once again, Battleborn will fall to the wayside. Which I think is genuinely unfortunate. It’s not a bad game! Do I think it could be a potentially deliberate move to bury their competition? Possibly. It’s not illegal, or wrong in any way. But it is pretty damn mean. That being said, I’m actually very excited for Overwatch’s double exp weekend. It’s a valuable lesson to other developers: Don’t cross Blizzard. They’ll bury your product under cool events, fancy skins, and stand upon their broken playerbase and bodies proudly, yelling something about a “payload”, whatever that is.

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