Horizon Lunar Colony: Interactive Telescope
As a fan of the Overwatch lore, one of the things I would really love in the game is the opportunity to explore each map to find interactive elements that could provide further information and lore about the world.
Outside the game, there have been transmedia elements in the past… like Amomentincrime.com, and lumerico.mx (Before Sombra was announced), as well as the Atlas News webpages in the official website.
Inside the game, sure, there is a news ticker in Numbani, there are Atlas News feeds in monitors throughout Volskaya Industries, and there are newspapers on the ground in Dorado and King’s Row. Sadly, those are not updated so often, which I consider to be a waste of potential. On top of that, there have not been interactive elements in the game to expand the universe.
Nevertheless, perhaps the Overwatch Creative Team is preparing to change that stance in big ways. There is evidence in the new Horizon Lunar Colony map that points in this direction. The Overwatch developers have added interactive elements in this map. It is not like the jump pad in the Oasis map (which I consider the first interactive element in the game). No. This one in the Horizon Lunar Colony is different.
When you are in the Attack team’s base: The Observatory, if you stand near the telescope’s eyepiece and press the “R” key in your keyboard, you will trigger a video clip that represents your character looking through the telescope. The telescope is aiming at Spain. It seems baby Winston set the telescope there searching for locations where to land his space rocket. It has a few potential landing spots marked, and Watchpoint: Gibraltar is one of them.
When the video clip plays, your character talks a short phrase. Each is unique, so Blizzard had to customize all 24 heroes’ audioclips.
Interactive Elements Wishlist
The telescope is not the only interactive element. To the right of the telescope is a giant yellow button or pad. When you stand on it, the massive Observatory outer-door opens wide or closes back to its original position. That’s less exciting, but still a cool thing if future maps can reveal hidden things by moving doors like that. There’s plenty of potential with things like that.
For example, with the help of a friendly player you could potentially operate a crane to move a player from the ground to a higher area. Maybe you could stand on a pad or click a button to open a door to gain access to a shortcut, or to a high-ground ledge (especially in a pyramid map). Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider style.
In the lore side of interactive elements, there are many monitors in various maps that scream for attention. In The Horizon Lunar Base, some monitors have buttons A and B which are not interactive. It would be nice to press A, and have the screen actually play video clips of some of the scientists, and the specimens — to learn what exactly was going on before the hominid rebellion.
In Numbani, it would be nice to see one of the monitors showing Atlas News reporting what happened at the airport, and actually see Doomfist punching the robots and cratering the wall.
In Antarctica, we should be able to interact with the monitors to access audioclips and videoclips of the crew as they are studying the weather anomaly near their base.
Of course, this shouldn’t be available in Play Mode or Competitive Mode (to prevent people from going AFK too often) — but make them available in Custom Games, where you can solo explore the maps for as long as you wish.
Telescope Interaction Video
This video shows you what all 24 heroes say when they interact with the telescope to view Spain from the moon. Note: Only Bastion and Winston have audioclips missing in the PTR.