It is official – Overwatch 2 will completely replace the original! overwatch at launch. During a Reddit AMAA† overwatch 2 director Aaron Keller confirmed that the upcoming Overwatch sequel will replace the original live service when the game launches in October.
“When OW2 launches on October 4, it will be a replacement for the current Live Service,” he confirmed. In other words, the original Overwatch will no longer be playable once the new game comes out. Instead, players attempting to play Overwatch will be prompted to update to Overwatch 2. Blizzard is pursuing this model to maintain a unified player base.
When the sequel was originally announced in August of last year, Blizzard claimed that Overwatch and Overwatch 2 players could play side by side when playing the same game modes.
The original plan allowed Overwatch players to play on the brand new Overwatch 2 maps and as the new heroes. Then game director Jeff Kaplan said it was a “shared multiplayer environment where no one is left behind.” In other words, multiplayer PvP would have been possible for the two titles.
Now it looks like Overwatch is, in fact, left behind. Overwatch will essentially roll straight into Overwatch 2, which was already planned to keep old legacy content and add new maps and systems. The fact that Overwatch 2 will be free to play means this should be an easy transition as no player has to pay for the new game.
But this change means it seems like 6v6 Overwatch is a thing of the past, like Overwatch 2 uses a 5v5 model† In fact, it’s likely that the transition from 6v6 to 5v5 made the two versions of the game incompatible.
“We use the term Early Access to indicate that this is just the beginning of a lot of new things coming to the game,” said Aaron Keller, the director of Overwatch 2. reddit† “We’re launching with new heroes, maps and features, but more are added every season – every 9 weeks. We recently released a roadmap detailing some of this content, with a new hero in Seasons 1 and 2 and a new map in Season 2. In addition, larger parts of the game that have always been part of the vision for OW2 will be released for the game as part of the live service, including the launch of the PvE campaign next year.”
Overwatch 2 – Xbox and Bethesda Games Showcase 2022
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Ryan Leston is an entertainment journalist and film critic for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter†