BlizzConline showcases new Overwatch 2 info highlighting character overhauls and PvP changes

Overwatch2 Character Models
Overwatch2 Character Models (Image credit: Blizzard)

Ow2 Mccree

Source: Blizzard (Image credit: Source: Blizzard)

What you need to know

  • During BlizzConline Overwatch 2 receieved a wide variety of development updates.
  • Overwatch 2 is set to release in 2022.
  • The original Overwatch launched in 2015.

Up until today, not much was known about Overwatch 2 other than that the game had recently been pushed back to 2022 with Diablo 4. Today, during BlizzConline there was a wide variety of information released about Overwatch 2. Through gameplay teasers, interviews and discussions, we learned a lot about the scope of Overwatch 2.

Character overhaul

One of the instantly noticeable changes that comes with Overwatch 2 is within the character models themselves. While many of the characters have found themselves having minor visual changes, from McCree looking older and sporting a lot more body armor to improved fabric textures and improved facial animations that truly bring these characters to life.

The heroes aren't the only ones getting a major overhaul. The team at Blizzard felt that their PvE enemies were lacking expression, and needed more detail to be engaging. Enemies reach and interact with each other in Overwatch 2. Whether it's from enemies losing limbs or to large boss-like enemies having exploitable weak spots, it appears that making the PvE experience feel just as important as the PvP experience was a big focus.

Progression and rewarding PvE

When Overwatch 2 was first revealed the PVE modes seemed lackluster. However, the team at Blizzard appears to have changed that in a big way. With each hero having a talent tree that you can progress through via PVE modes. Each tree has 7 tiers that players can progress through that can be unlocked via skills points. With additional abilities being able to be unlocked through progression in Hero Missions.

What are Hero Missions? These are part of Overwatch 2's replayable co-op PvP mode that offers players a new varied experience. These missions will take place across all of Overwatch's maps, that will feature a variety of different objectives. From delivering payloads, to a variety of unannounced game modes that are specific to Hero Missions. This will be one of the primary ways players will be able to upgrade and progress through their favorite hero's skill tree.

Overwatch 2 campaign details

Blizzconline Gothenburg

Source: Blizzard (Image credit: Source: Blizzard)

Overwatch 2 will feature a campaign, unlike the franchise's first installment. The campaign in Overwatch 2 focuses on the members of Overwatch reuniting. With a dark force at work, that appears to be leading a 2nd Omnic Uprising. After building up the lore since the release of the original game in 2015, the implications of this storyline are intriguing and certainly could elevate Overwatch 2 to new heights.

These missions will take players all over the globe, from a map set in a burning temple in India all the way to Toronto in Canada during an intense siege of the city. With footage even showing a dynamic snowstorm that creates large snowdrifts as players progress through the level.

PvP not resting on its laurels

While Overwatch is no doubt known for its team focused PvP action. The team at Blizzard appears to not want to rest on their laurels. They are focused on building and improving on the base structure that players love from the first game. Some new changes that were teased were different passive abilities for each character class. These passive abilities are focused around the role of each class, such as the damage class getting a passive boost in movement speed, while support roles get a slow but automatic healing effect to help keep them in the battle longer.

While the Overwatch formula is no doubt fantastic and engrossing to players, it is great to see the team focusing on changing the formula in subtle ways and also focusing even more on the teamwork aspects of the game.

Nicholas Downie