Overwatch 2 had the spotlight on the first day of BlizzConline 2021, and the development team revealed new details, including new maps, new hero looks, hero progression, PvP changes, and more.
Overwatch 2 was announced back in BlizzCon 2019. However, it’s been subject to delays ever since. Fans have longed for new information, and after much speculation, their prayers were finally answered in BlizzConline 2021.
A good chunk of the online convention’s first day revolved around Overwatch 2. The development team revealed everything from new maps and new hero looks to PvP changes, hero missions, and more. Here’s everything we learned.
New Maps: Rome & New York
Overwatch 2 will feature two new maps: Rome and New York. It’s unclear which mode they will be included in, so we’ll have to wait to hear more in the upcoming weeks and months.
New York City’s landscape merges the past and the present with the future. It features historical buildings like Grand Central Station mixed with contemporary businesses such as pizza shops and cafes. However, it also includes futuristic sci-fi elements unique to the game’s story.
- Read More: Is Junker Queen coming to Overwatch 2?
Similarly, Rome emphasizes a “romantic, powerful feeling of old-world architecture.” The map features relics of the past, including The Colosseum and a Roman temple. But it also features a modern football stadium.
New Hero Looks
Overwatch players have been looking forward to the new hero looks in the sequel, and the presentation at BlizzConline 2021 didn’t disappoint. We already knew about the improvements to Genji, Lucio, Mai, Mercy, Reinhardt, Tracer, and Winston.
However, the team revealed more changes to McCree, Pharah, Reaper, and Widowmaker. In terms of general changes, hero textures will include a better-looking fabric, and their faces will be made to look more expressive, especially during cutscenes.
Overwatch 2 includes a wealth of PvP changes, some of which are particularly exciting. For the sake of brevity, we’ve organized them into dot points to make things easier. Here’s a list of them all:
- Sojourn, the new character, was shown using a rail gun to “rip through” enemies. It’s a nod to classic shooters such as Quake and has the potential to be a hit among veteran players.
- Overwatch 2’s PvP will be based on the existing structure, but the team is experimenting with changes that could make it a “big departure” somehow.
- Passive abilities that affect all characters within an entire role called “role passives” could be in the works. However, it’s still being experimented with.
- Tank characters could be re-worked to be more efficient at close-ranged combat and brawling rather than being all about absorbing damage.
- A designated team of developers has been assembled to focus on making combat more polished and intuitive specifically.
- Melee attacks will be re-worked to include better animations and sound effects.
- Similarly, weapon sounds have been tweaked to sound more realistic, like when firing in specific environments or guns are running low on ammo.
- Last but not least, Jeff Kaplan confirmed the maligned 2CP mode won’t be included in competitive mode rotations, and might not even be included in the game at all outside of Arcade.
Overwatch 2 features a new replayable co-op PvP mode called Hero Missions. It is designed to appeal to players who aren’t interested in the regular competitive mode but still want a competitive fix.
The developers intend to make more than a hundred missions, which they claim can be played “night after night” without feeling repetitive. Players can select any hero on the roster, and the missions will take place on all of the existing maps. Some will even include some additional areas.
Overwatch 2 will have an impressive hero progression system in PvE modes. Heros have multiple talent trees to pick from, and each one is geared towards a different build. For example, Reinhardt has three trees called Crusader, Guardian, and Juggernaut. Soldier 76, on the other hand, has Commander, Rifleman, and Vigilante.
Each talent tree has seven tiers that players can unlock with skill points. They’ll also include some new abilities. For example, Junkrat can use a double grenade launcher, Mercy can fire explosive shells, and Reinhardt can pin more than one enemy.
Overwatch 2 features an exciting new campaign. It revolves around Overwatch members re-uniting to unravel the mystery behind another Omnic uprising.
The missions will include cinematics and cutscenes that seamlessly tie into the gameplay and musical themes for each hero and location. They’ll also take place within gigantic custom-built maps complete with dynamic environments, weather systems, NPCs, and of course, enemies.
Naturally, Overwatch 2’s PvE mode includes enemies, which will be different on each mission. They seemed a little underwhelming in the 2019 teaser trailer. However, they’ve come a long way since.
For example, they’ve been made to be more reactive and engaging in fights. They will react to gunfire and damage and change their strategy accordingly. Some enemies will also have glaring weaknesses, while others will be harder to spot.
Developers are also working on elite enemies with different abilities and behavior in addition to increased strength and damage. It’s something we’ve come to expect from Soulsborne games.
So, there you have it, folks! That’s everything we learned about Overwatch 2 from BlizzConline 2021.
Unfortunately, there’s still no news on a release date or when the beta test will launch. But it was still a treasure trove of information, and fans cannot wait to hear more.