In a recent Developer Update, Blizzard has announced that they are shifting their plans for Overwatch 2, so the players can play the game sooner.
The highly-anticipated sequel to Overwatch was going to come with a revamped version of PvP and an all-new PvE mode when it was originally announced back in 2019. However, to get content out faster and to appease players, Blizzard has decided to “decouple” the two modes and just release PvP for testing now.
A closed Alpha test starts today, which includes Blizzard employees, Overwatch League players and a few close partner groups to help them prepare for the wider testing in late April. Blizzard is holding closed Beta testing for PC next month, and you can sign up for now on the official Overwatch site.
“This closed beta will include a larger group of testers who we will ask to provide gameplay feedback,” reads the announcement on Overwatch’s website. “Our goal for this phase is to test our new features, content, and systems before we shift to stress-testing the servers with a wider player base in future Beta tests.”
It seems that players will be granted access in groups and they will allow more players in as they go along. Therefore, if you aren’t given access for the first test, then you haven’t missed out and will likely be in the next group.
What to Expect in Overwatch 2 PvP Beta 1
Here’s what to expect in what Blizzard refers to as “Overwatch 2 PvP Beta 1”:
- 5v5 Multiplayer
- New Damage Hero: Sojourn
- 4 New Maps
- New Game Mode: Push
- Hero Reworks
- New Ping System
This announcement confirms what we have been hearing for years now, 5v5 is still the plan for Overwatch 2. This will most definitely be the biggest change coming to the game, as removing a player from each team with change the dynamic of everyone playing on each side. The “hero reworks” mentioned above will likely include the previously announced tank changes to make tanks more aggressive and possibly change Doomfist into a Tank hero.
Blizzard says today’s announcement is a “first step” towards increasing the communication with players and establishing a “consistent cadence of updates”. This is important as Overwatch players haven’t received a new hero in two years, and have been living off a new deathmatch map being released every six months. Although, if Blizzard keeps its 2019 promise, all of Overwatch 2’s new heroes, maps, and modes will come to the original Overwatch at no additional cost. Fingers crossed.