Overwatch Drops Competitive Mode for Launch, "Redesigned" Version Coming Later

Blizzard's shooter won't have Competitive Play in the beta or full release, at least not right away.

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Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan has confirmed that the soon-to-launch shooter will not ship with a competitive mode. Kaplan said in the game's forums that, after considering fan feedback from the closed beta, it was decided that the mode would not make it into the open beta or the full release's launch, though it's expected to come later.

"We worked extremely hard to get competitive play in the game for closed beta," Kaplan said. "We've been reading feedback from the community and taking it all to heart. As a result, we've temporarily disabled competitive play for open beta so that we can rework the system and make it better."

Kaplan explained that Blizzard hopes to launch a "redesigned" version of competitive play sometime after Overwatch releases in full on May 24. He did not provide any details on the updated version, nor did he offer any kind of window for its release. Kaplan ended his statement by thanking fans for their feedback and patience as Blizzard continues to work on the game.

Overwatch's competitive play option was added to the game in early April. In the mode, available at level 25, players could "rank up" through a series of divisions and tiers in month-long seasons. The progression rewards include new sprays, player icons, and voice lines.

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In his statement, Kaplan did not mention any specific pieces of feedback that Blizzard received regarding competitive play, but clearly, there are things the studio wants to change about it. We'll bring you more news about the new version of competitive play when it becomes available.

Overwatch is Blizzard's first new franchise in 18 years,. The game's open beta is available now for people who preordered by April 29, while everyone on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One will be able to jump in later this week.

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