Overwatch has only been out for a few weeks now, but it’s already got 10 million players. Naturally, Blizzard has big plans for the future.
In a recent forum post, Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan laid out Blizzard’s plans for the next many months, noting that the team is “working on content patches throughout the rest of the year and into early 2017 currently.”
While he didn’t offer much in the way of details, he reiterated that Competitive Mode is the big focus right now, and it’s very far along. Blizzard is considering dropping it onto a public test server soon. “We’re working very hard to make it awesome at release but there are some things you need to see and feel along with a large population before you can properly sign off on the feature,” he wrote. “I anticipate Competitive Play will require a few seasons’ worth of iteration before we’re in the place we want to be.”
He also mentioned that new maps and heroes are being worked on “daily.” The heroes are still in a prototype phase, so it’s too early to announce anything, while one map is “officially” in production and shouldn’t be too terribly far off. (What does the lack of in-production heroes mean for Sombra? Hmmm.)
Regardless of which maps and heroes Blizzard chooses to release or scrap, anything that sees the light of day will be free of charge.
In terms of more nitty gritty stuff, Blizzard is looking into improving spectating and highlight functionality, which they say will also help them improve Play Of The Game. HOWEVER. “These features are not being worked on heavily right now,” he added. “We’re more in a mode of design and planning around these. So there’s not an immediate timeframe for the spectating stuff.” Bummer.
Excitingly, Blizzard is also looking into more custom game options (including a server browser!!!) and social features, as well as a beefier progression system. “We want to give you more customization options (we know people want to have random option for Poses for example),” Kaplan wrote. “We have some cool ideas of how you could equip more than one spray or voice line... so those are fun things we’d like to get to. But they are minor and are far off. We also have some pretty cool new content we want to add to the progression system—so we’re looking forward to getting some of that in eventually.”
Blizzard plans to continue pushing back against a veritable rogue’s gallery of puckered assholes, as well. “There is a large anti-cheat and anti-hack effort going on, but I can’t really discuss that (the first rule of fight club...),” Kaplan said.
Lastly, Blizzard’s heard all the tick rate talk, and they are looking into pushing the game’s high bandwidth mode into other places. “Obviously, we’re putting a lot of effort against our high bandwidth Custom Game option to see if we can explore proliferating that feature further,” Kaplan said.
That’s a lot of stuff, and some of it may fall to the wayside before it’s all said and done. Still, promising stuff. What do you hope Blizzard adds to Overwatch? Which things do you think they should prioritize the most?