PSA: Blizzard has started sharing important details about Overwatch 2 content progression before its launch next month as it replaces the original game. Current Overwatch players should note how long they have left to enjoy the multiplayer FPS before Blizzard discontinues it.
Those who own the first Overwatch game can’t play it right up to the free-to-play sequel’s October 4 launch. This week, Blizzard told Eurogamer that it would take the first game offline about 27 hours before making Overwatch 2 playable, which could be October 2 or October 3, depending on the time zone. Sometime before then, Blizzard will give players a clear timetable and checklist of steps to migrate their games smoothly.
Current Overwatch owners can pre-load Overwatch 2 ahead of its launch while Blizzard migrates things on the server backend. New players must wait until launch day to download Overwatch 2.
Blizzard also explained Overwatch 2’s battle pass system this week, covering how players will unlock new playable characters and other content. When season one starts on October 4, everyone gains immediate access to the characters Junker Queen and Sojourn. Players can unlock other content in season one’s battle pass – including the new support character Kiriko – by simply playing the game without spending any money.
Players who buy the premium season one battle pass for 1000 Overwatch Coins ($10) immediately unlock Kiriko and can earn additional cosmetic items with a 20 percent XP boost. Overwatch 1 owners also immediately get Kiriko along with a few other items.
Season two will also introduce a new character, but later seasons will alternate in adding maps and characters. Season three will introduce a new map, season four a new character, and so on. Those who start playing Overwatch 2 during later seasons can either buy content from earlier seasons or unlock it through special challenges.
Players can’t use new characters in competitive modes for the first few weeks after their introduction. Blizzard hopes that decision will give it time to analyze how players use the new additions before properly balancing them for competitive play.
Overwatch 2’s paid PvE portion remains a mystery, but Blizzard plans to reveal it next year.