Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan confirms major summer schedule changes - Dexerto

Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan confirms major summer schedule changes

Published: 27/May/2019 9:34 Updated: 27/May/2019 11:58

by Joe O'Brien


Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan has teased changes to the typical schedule for new content over the coming summer.

In a recent interview with Overwatch YouTuber Stylosa, Kaplan teased that this summer’s content calendar would not follow previous years.

Blizzard have largely stuck to a consistent schedule for in-game content. While major new features like the Workshop simply appear whenever they’re ready, consistent content like new heroes and events have arrived on a reliable timeline year-by-year.

As a result, by now players can generally predict what they’re getting and when, leaving only the exact details unknown. According to Kaplan, however, that’s set to change for summer 2019.

“It’s going to be a very different summer. Our players like to look back at the calendar and say ‘this is what always happens, and this is when I expect things’. There’s going to be some mix-up this summer in when things land.”

[Discussion begins at 33:35 for mobile viewers]

There are two major content releases expected for the coming summer, according to the typical schedule. The next hero, number 31, is due to be released, and the annual Summer Games in-game event is expected to take place.

Kaplan didn’t explicitly state which of these might be affected by the change. According to the previous schedule, the new hero is expected to be revealed in late June or early July, with a release by the end of July. Meanwhile, Summer Games should start at the beginning of August.

It’s not clear at this point whether the changes are merely a matter of scheduling, or if there will be brand-new content added in that players aren’t expecting. It certainly seems plausible that the latter could be the case, as the addition of new content would appear to explain an updated release schedule.

Overwatch has had a consistent schedule of events in recent years, with six different events each taking place at roughly the same time each year. Blizzard hasn’t introduced a new event since the first iterations of these in the game’s first year, and the content offered by each has remained largely consistent.

In 2018, Blizzard stated that players should not expect major new event content as they were instead focusing on developing more major game features. With the release of the Workshop and the Replays system, it seems some of those are now coming to fruition, however, and so perhaps this is the time that the developers will begin to make major changes to events, or even add entirely new events.


Overwatch reveals drop rates for loot box items and skins

Published: 27/Nov/2020 23:45

by Michael Gwilliam


Overwatch has finally revealed the official drop rates for loot box items such as skins and sprays within the in-game client.

Players logging in can now check out the exact rates for standard loot box items in a special page in the home screen menu. The page provides a lot of details for those trying to complete their cosmetic collections.

Some of the information is already pretty standard, with each loot box containing either four items or three items with credits. However, each loot box includes at least one item of rare or higher quality.

The description goes on to further state that, on average, an epic quality item will be found in one out of every 5.5 loot boxes and legendary items found in every 13.5.

Oni Genji Overwatch skin
Legendary Overwatch skins are the rarest.

Furthermore, they list common items as having a 99% drop rate, rare at 94%, epic with 18.5% and legendary a mere 7.5%.

These rates only apply for standard loot boxes, however, and not seasonal loot boxes such as the upcoming Winter Wonderland, Archive or Anniversary events.

Amusingly, the page also states that items obtained through loot boxes will not give any additional advantage while playing the game.

Overwatch loot box drop rates
Blizzard revealed the loot box drop rates.

While, for the most part this is true, some players have discovered some slight advantages of using, for example, barefoot D.Va or Pharah skins to mask their footsteps.

That said, aside from these rather niche instances, Overwatch has been good at completely avoiding pay-to-win components that have plagued other games.

Loot boxes have long been under fire from both politicians and players who view the practice as a form of gambling.

Sombra fires Machine Pistol
Many players and politicians took aim at loot boxes.

In 2017, China forced Blizzard to reveal the exact drop rates for games such as Overwatch and Hearthstone.

Elsewhere, in the United States, Republican Senator Josh Hawley proposed the “Protecting Children from Abusive Games Act” which took aim at loot boxes and other pay-to-win practices.

However, to combat this, several companies including Activision Blizzard agreed to disclose drop rates for their titles.

At least now Overwatch players can sleep easy knowing exactly what their odds are for unlocking certain skins.