Overwatch Will Disappear October 2, Return As Overwatch 2 October 4
Overwatch will go offline 27 hours prior to the arrival of Overwatch 2, after which the original game will become unplayable.
In a group interview that Eurogamer participated in, Blizzard stated Overwatch will go offline 27 hours before the arrival of Overwatch 2 on October 4. Though fans previously knew Overwatch would essentially be converted into Overwatch 2, these are the first details about the actual timing of the conversion. That means October 2 (or possibly October 3 in some parts of the world, depending on the time zone) will be the last day to take the original Overwatch for a spin.
"So it's basically 2nd October, Overwatch 1 has its last day; we're down for 27 hours to give our team the ability to update all the servers to make sure that the backend supporting the launch of Overwatch 2 is ready to go; and then players can come in on 4th October," commercial lead Jon Spector told Eurogamer. "And if they already have Overwatch 1, they'll get Overwatch 2 as basically an update from a systems perspective. You'll see, 'Update the game to Overwatch 2' as an option on your PC or console. If you're a new player, you'll see on 4th October, the ability to come in and download and play Overwatch 2 for free."
Unlike its predecessor, Overwatch 2 will be free-to-play and will ditch loot boxes in favor of a battle pass system, which Blizzard has recently shared new details about. A new support hero, Kiriko, will be unlocked via progressing the game's free battle pass (or unlocked immediately for existing Overwatch players). Kiriko is a kunai-throwing ninja who is aided by a guardian fox spirit that will aid allies, and who's mother served as a mentor for characters like Hanzo and Genji.
Players who purchase the game's premium battle pass will unlock new heroes like Kiriko instantly, whereas free players will need to progress their battle pass to unlock them. Previously revealed new heroes like Sojourn and Junker Queen will be unlocked for free for all players who log in during the game's first season.
Overwatch 2 will feature full cross-play and cross-progression, as it shifts from the original's 6v6 format to 5v5. Though the game's initial launch will only include the PvP portion of the game, PvE story content is still in the works, with Blizzard stating it is looking forward to sharing more details in 2023.