Since Overwatch 2 was first announced, there has been plenty of speculation over what sets the sequel apart from the Overwatch we have come to know and love. Hands-on time with the shooter’s successor means we finally know more about the changes between Overwatch and Overwatch 2.
Overwatch’s 2 PvP is currently in Beta, undergoing new changes and brand-new updates to Heroes, Maps, and even Game Modes. There is quite a lot to keep track of, though luckily you can always find the Patch Notes log under “Options” on the Main Menu.
Here are all the major changes we know of so far that have been made to Overwatch 2.
A Bigger Focus on PvE Will Arrive Soon
Although the focus of the Overwatch 2 Beta is largely on the massive changes that have been made to PvP, the promise of new PvE content is still on the horizon. According to the Overwatch 2 team, we can expect new “missions” to drop starting in 2023 as a form of seasonal content.
There Is Only One Tank Hero Per Team
That’s right, Overwatch’s new 5v5 team composition means one less tank per team. Say goodbye to the concept of “Main Tanks” and “Off-Tanks” altogether.
The switch from having two Tanks in Overwatch’s standard 6v6 team composition to now only one Tank Hero was starting and more than a little scary at first. However, massive changes have been made to all the Roles and Heroes to support this substantial shift to PvP gameplay.
New Maps Have Been Introduced
With the arrival of Overwatch 2 comes all new Maps for both new and old Game Modes.
Royal Tour has been added to the Escort map pool. Midtown and Paraiso have both been added to the Hybrid map pool. Lastly, the new Push game mode includes a new colosseum and New Queen Street map.
On top of this, most of the pre-existing maps you already know have been tweaked to fit Overwatch 2’s new look, most notably different lighting changes to maps that were previously set at night and vice versa.
All-New Heroes Have Been Added
A new game means new heroes, and so far Overwatch 2 does not disappoint. The Beta kicked things off with the long-anticipated addition of sojourn to the Damage hero ranks and followed up by bringing Junker Queen to the table as a new Tank.
As with any new hero, we can expect plenty of small (and big) reworks for Sojourn and Junker Queen during the Overwatch 2 Beta and beyond.
The New “Push” Mode is Here
At long last, Overwatch 2 heralds in an all-new game mode for PvP. Now, in addition to Escort, Hybrid, Control, and Assault, you have the chance of queuing into a Push match.
Similar in a sense to Escort, in Push, your team and the enemy team compete to maintain control of a Robot called TS1 for the duration of the match. While in control of the Robot, it steadily pushes a Barricade towards the enemy spawn.
The objective is to escort the Robot as it pushes the Barricade to the end of its route or otherwise to succeed in pushing your Barricade farther than your rival before time runs out.
Your Scoreboard Has a Brand New Look
The Scoreboard of old is no more. You will find that Overwatch 2 has a brand new Scoreboard with a layout that matches the sequel’s newer aesthetic.
The appearance of your team’s current Ultimate Status is much cleaner and can be found right alongside each hero’s username.
The “Damage Taken” stat and other stats have instead been replaced with a “Damage Mitigated” stat, or “MIT”. This tracks the amount of incoming damage you and your teammates have mitigated, whether that was by shielding your team or landing a Biotic Grenade or “Anti Heal” on an enemy player.
Most notably, there is no more “ranking” of stats. No more “silver” healing or “gold” damage. Just the cold, hard numbers. In effect, this could help alleviate some of the in-fighting that would sometimes occur between teammates in Overwatch over indications that someone was “underperforming”.
You Can Ping an Enemy’s Location
We saw a massive improvement in Communications for Overwatch with the arrival of the customizable Communication Wheel. Overwatch 2 attempts to take that a step further by finally allowing you to place a Ping in the world.
When hovering over an enemy player, placing a Ping will point out their location (including an icon of their hero) to the rest of your team. Some heroes even have Pings to point out critical circumstances. For instance, Ana can Ping an enemy she has slept with her Sleep Dart, and Mercy can Ping a downed teammate to call for cover so that she can Resurrect them safely.
Heroes Have New Voice Lines
The new changes to gameplay mechanics in Overwatch 2 have largely stolen the spotlight, but if you have always been a fan of Overwatch’s story there is a treat for you too.
Tons of new Hero voice lines have been added to the Overwatch 2 Beta, including new spawn room interactions, heroes’ internal monologues, and hero reactions to events mid-match such as kills or canceling enemy Ultimates.
Only Tanks Can Stun Now
Every Main Tank player likely had a small heart attack when the new 5v5 team composition for Overwatch 2 PvP was announced.
To balance out the game’s new “solo tank” dynamic, Overwatch 2 has done away with all “stun” or “knockback” abilities for Damage heroes. Instead, only Tank heroes can perform stuns or knockbacks now.
What does this look like? Cassidy’s infamous “Flashbang” stun grenade is now a “Magnetic Grenade” that homes in on targets with the potential to stick and explode. Similarly, while Mei’s primary fire still slows enemy players, it can no longer freeze them into place like a popsicle.
Exclusive “Classic” Cosmetics Make a Debut
When Overwatch 2 was first teased, it was exciting to see that the Heroes would be getting a bit of a makeover. But what does that mean for the Cosmetic Skins you have been collecting for years?
In the Overwatch 2 Beta, you have the option of choosing from each Hero’s “Classic” or “Classic II” skins. The good news is that all of your previous skins are still available to customize your favorite Heroes.
Up Next: Overwatch 2 Wiki Guide
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