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Article:“Here’s how ‘Overwatch’ designed each character to feel truly unique”

Author: Tim Mulkerin

Author summary:

Tim Mulkerin studied art history at the University of Arizona and works as a freelance writer at IGN, Kill Screen, Paste, and Business Insider.

Article summary:

    The article has a strong focus on shape language and movement in the context of Overwatch characters.  The game Overwatch has a ton of characters that are very easy to identify at a distance.  Mulkerin ties shape language and movement to the functionality of the game to inform character design.  Since Overwatch is a fighting game with a variety of characters, some small and nimble but weaker to attacks, some large, slow, but able to take a lot of hits.  So when designing the character the bigger tank characters would naturally need to be larger, maybe blockier, or rounder.  Then a fast precision character required a design that is tighter, smaller, thinner, etc.  These aspects of the design not only make sense on a story/personality level, but when a player sees one of these characters at a distance, they need to be able to quickly analyze what kind of character they are going up against and how to react.  SO the designs themselves are not only iconic, memorable, and fun, they are also needed to be functional in their designs based on the context of a video game.   


Mulkerin, Tim. “Here’s How ‘Overwatch’ Designed Each Character to Feel Truly Unique.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 1 June 2016,

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