Overwatch 2 devs alter Midtown map design in response to player feedback

Eleni Thomas
Overwatch 2 bench still image
Blizzard Entertainment

Overwatch 2 devs Blizzard have recently made a small but significant change to their New York City-inspired map, adjusting the design of some of the decor in Midtown to a less anti-homelessness layout.

As first reported in Polygon, Blizzard have made a change to the design of the benches found in Overwatch 2’s version of Grand Central Station following a player request made at the beginning of June. 

On twitter, a post by ClearTogether pointed out that the initial design of these benches mimicked reality in all the wrong ways. In the tweet, she pointed out how “the anti-homeless architecture of the benches in Midtown makes me super bummed.

“Benches like this are designed specifically to make the homeless miserable.”

ClearTogether references the way the benches have bars placed across the seat, something that is common in New York City subway stations as a way to inhibit homeless individuals from sleeping on them.

While this small player request might have been easy to miss, Blizzard not only heard the feedback but were quick to take action and make the change. 

Now when players boot up the Overwatch 2 beta and enter Midtown, they’ll notice their benches have been redesigned and no longer have multiple arm barring’s across the seat. Players have thanked developers for noticing the feedback and making the alteration.

In response to her acknowledgement of the change, lead narrative designer and writer for Overwatch Gavin Jurgens-Fyhrie commented that ClearTogether’s feedback was “great”.

Jurgens-Fyhrie then went on to say that “we decided early on in the map story development that Overwatch’s New York offers free, safe housing for people. Some of this is in the map VO, with further details planned for later.”

Junker Queen using her knife
Blizzard Entertainment
Overwatch 2 will launch in early October and will go live as part of a giant update for Overwatch

Fans are eagerly anticipating when Overwatch is transitioned over to Overwatch 2 later in the year. It will be a free-to-play live service game, with Blizzard aiming to have seasonal updates for the game every 9 weeks.

For each season, a battle pass will be available and constant updates will add additional heroes and maps for players. On launch, the game will include 6 maps, a brand new game mode, 3 new heroes and of course, new skins and cosmetics for players.

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