Overwatch on Switch Takes a Page From Metroid Prime 3 With New Control Scheme

Overwatch on Switch Takes a Page From Metroid Prime 3 With New Control Scheme

Motion controls are back in fashion.

A big question around Overwatch's forthcoming Switch version is how, exactly, it will map to your hands on the tiny Joy-Cons and thumbsticks of the hybrid console. In a recent interview, principal game producer Wes Yanagi detailed exactly how Overwatch will work on Nintendo's handheld, including its surprising addition of gyro and even motion controls.

In an interview with Vooks, Yanagi broke down the various ways of aiming and shooting in the world of Overwatch on Switch, including gyro-aiming. If you've played Splatoon 2, this will probably feel familiar; moving your Switch or Pro Controller up or down can provide additional control over your reticle, making it easier to fine-tune shots on the fly. However, Yanagi mentions one other interesting method of control: using Joy-Cons as pointers on the screen.

"You can detach the Joy-Cons and point it at the screen like a laser pointer," Yanagi says. "One of our designers plays this way and dominates."

This is a little interesting, as depending on the accuracy and sensitivity of the Joy-Con controller, "pointing" could be a surprisingly effective way of controlling your character in a console FPS. It's the most analogous option to a typical mouse and keyboard, while also giving off some Duck Hunt vibes [Ed. Note: Reminds me of Metroid Prime 3]. If you're worried about switching between sensitivities all the time when going from heroes like Reinhardt to Widowmaker, no worries; Yanagi says you'll be able to customize settings, which includes individual hero settings for gyro-aim.

The idea of gyro-aiming in Overwatch might seem a bit odd. According to Yanagi, it was Nintendo who encouraged Blizzard to investigate implementing it. "A few of us were a little skeptical at first, but after doing a bunch of research and experimenting with various implementations, it really grew on us," Yanagi says. "I think most people who spend time learning the controls really like it a lot."

Blizzard is working with Iron Galaxy, the same team behind Diablo 3's Switch port, on bringing Overwatch to the Switch. It's set to hit on October 15, and is targeting 30 frames per second on both docked and handheld. While it likely won't have cross-play, one can only hope it'll still have access to all the awesome Overwatch Workshop modes being made.

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Eric Van Allen

News Editor

Eric is a writer and Texan. He's a former contributor to sites including Compete, Polygon, Waypoint, and the Washington Post. He loves competitive games, live music, and travel.

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