The Overwatch Beta Ends Next Week

Illustration for article titled The Overwatch Beta Ends Next Week

Overwatch’s closed beta has been quite a ride. Between changes for the better, clever player strategies, and butts, it’s gotten everybody talking (or making entire games about how they’re missing out) on multiple occasions. Next week, it’s coming to a close.

Blizzard just announced that Overwatch’s long-running closed beta will conclude on April 25. The next step? The game’s full release on May 24. It’s worth noting that progress made in the closed beta will not transfer over to the main game. Sorry, folks with snazzy level badges and every character skin under the sun. Perhaps one day you will see your precious virtual treasures again in digital Valhalla.

In a video update, Blizzard added that changes in the near future will be focused on stability and polish. After launch, they hope to get back to adding new features like a spectator mode for competitive games.


All that said, Blizzard’s holding a brief open “beta” (read: definitely a promotional thing) from May 5-9. So you’ll be able to check out the game one more time before launch, if you’re still on the fence.

Did you make it into the Overwatch closed beta? What did you think, both of the game and the way Blizzard handled the beta? I was impressed. In this age of larger companies shrinking their beta windows ever smaller, Blizzard tested Overwatch for months, keeping an active dialogue with fans on their forums all the while.

In many cases, they responded to negative feedback with quick, decisive patching, but they also, for the most part, stuck to their guns where it was warranted (e.g. their stance on the whole Tracer thing). This bodes well for Overwatch’s future as a live game, although Blizzard admitted that they won’t be updating quite as quickly or radically as they did during beta; you can afford to take more chances with an unfinished game, after all.

Kotaku senior reporter. Beats: Twitch, streaming, PC gaming. Writing a book about streamers tentatively titled "STREAMERS" to be published by Atria/Simon & Schuster in the future.

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Got in both of the “Beta Weekends” where they temporarily invited a lot more people.

Easily my favorite of the wave of “MOBA-shooters,” probably because it’s just a FPS with ultimates rather than trying to weld on more MOBA-y features like levels, talents, creeps, etc.

What’s there to say that hasn’t been said: It feels good, is gorgeous, colorful and likable characters, exciting pace...

My biggest gripe is how steamroll it can be in a one-sided match, which is probably a fault of the lack of access to the Competitive ladder and a limited player pool (and also the fact that it doesn’t’ give an indication of who is doing poorly via conventional KDA/stat displays — I swear I just would like to know so I can give advice).

I’ll be pre-ordering the $60 edition.