Today, Blizzard gave fans a look at how Overwatch 2 will move from its predecessor’s standard $60 pricing toward a free-to-play live service model. The “reveal event” stream also provided looks at the seasonal release roadmap and the newest hero: Junker Queen.
Aaron Keller, Overwatch 2’s game director, said the team decided to go free-to-play to ensure the new release would be “a living game” with seasonal content drops players can look forward to “for years to come.”
“In recent years, we haven’t done a good enough job at delivering that for our fans, and we feel their frustration,” Keller said. “We took a hard look at our strategy for Overwatch 2 to make sure that we could deliver new heroes, new maps, modes and more to the community on a frequent and consistent basis.”
The team plans to bring those updates every nine weeks through seasonal events. Overwatch 2 production director Paul Halile said players can see what they mean through the game’s second beta, which’ll be playable on Xbox and PlayStation as well as PC.
These are some of the updates coming to Overwatch 2 in October and December:
- There won’t be any more loot boxes, though the event teased a battle pass and an in-game store for Overwatch 2.
- Competitive play will have a post-match report, giving players a breakdown on their performance.
- PvE in 2023 will have playable canonical storylines
- The game will add Rio- and Portugal-based maps
- Mythic skins, which are cosmetic skins designed to be a step above legendary skins, will be added, as well as character charms to display on weapons and banners.
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The event also unveiled a new origin story and cinematic for its new tank hero, Junker Queen. First seen during the Junkertown escort map reveal trailer, Junker Queen is the first Overwatch character developed specifically for Overwatch 2’s 5v5 gameplay. She’ll be playable during Overwatch 2’s second beta on June 28. Here’s a rundown of her abilities.
- She wields a giant battle ax, which, good for her.
- Her abilities replenish her health by draining enemies, similar to Moira.
- She has a Jagged Blade weapon, which is a short knife named Gracie, that Junker Queen can melee and yeet at enemies as a secondary attack, creating a wound. Calling Jagged Blade back to Junker Queen will bring a stabbed enemy toward you.
- Junker Queen’s Ultimate: Rampage is a forward charge attack of magnetized metal that damages and debuffs enemy healing, like Ana’s biotic grenades.
Overwatch 2 is slated to release on October 4.