Overwatch 2‘s launch has been met with revulsion, due to long queue times, monetization, and replacing the superior original.
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At this time of writing, the user score for Overwatch 2 is 1.4 out of 10, from over 1,300 reviews on PC, with consoles barely fairing better. Despite this, the game has a Metascore of 81 from 26 critic reviews, and 80% of 31 critics recommend the game via Open Critic.
The poor reception has been noted by VG247 and GameSpot, with GameRant claiming the game was being “review bombed.” So what exactly are players upset about?
Many of the user reviews on Metacritic criticize Overwatch 2 for having minor improvements over the original, combined with the Battle Pass business model. Combined with how Overwatch was updated into Overwatch 2, one disgruntled user succinctly complained, “Literally the same game with only minor changes made for one purpose – take the purchased game away from the players and add monetization to it.”
Other complaints include microtransactions being a necessity as the coins you earn through matches (not the Battle Pass) only net you a fraction of the new items on sale, skins and voice lines themselves being expensive, those who owned skins in the original Overwatch now having to pay to re-acquire them, and long log-in queues on console.
“So they took one of the best FPS games ever made, altered it for the worse, and re-released it with a really egregious micro transaction system,” decried another dissatisfied player, adding, “Beyond that, you can’t even really play it thanks to the connectivity issues. Literally, I would’ve given it this score before the connection problem, now it deserves something even less.”
“Gameplay is amazing,” complimented a Metacritic user before slamming the developer for the game’s implementation of microtransactions. “Just hope you want to open your wallet for any piece of content. Skin? 20 dollars. a freaking voice line? 5 dollars. Want to do it for free? play for 8 months straight and get a single skin.”
Players having to use their real phone number to log-in was also a frequent complaint, with Blizzard Entertainment only letting “existing Overwatch players” bypass the requirement after outcry. Nonetheless, there are complaints of players being unable to log-in depending on their country or service provider. Pre-paid plans have also reportedly been rejected.
User MrDeibus was quick to point out that Overwatch 2’s pros is non-existent, proceeding to provide a list of cons that prompted them to give the title a low score, including phone contract requirements, abysmal load times, latency issues, the and widely criticized microtransactions system.
Some criticized the gameplay, citing missing gameplay and quality of life features (as cataloged by Reddit users), along with a lack of balance. Some even went as far as to claim the original Overwatch was patched out to prevent its superior gameplay overshadowing 2.
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Overwatch 2 also had two launch-day DDoS attacks, but long-log in times seem to persist. VG247 writer Dom Peppiatt reported even 48 hours later, “I have the Xbox version of the game open as I write this, and I have gone from 400 people ahead of me in the queue, to 300, to 800, and now to 1600.”
Even the game’s technical aspects are seemreportedlyingly faltering. Reddit user Dracyoshi warned, “Be careful: There’s a chat bug that can cause unexpected purchases and Blizzard won’t issue refunds for in-game currency.”
The user alleges a skin was “unlocked” as they typed in the in-game chat (the game taking it as menu navigation). A Blizzard Entertainment support representative responded “After checking into it, we are not able to offer refunds or any compensation for unlocks made with in-game currency in Overwatch. All those unlocks are meant to be final.”
Blizzard Entertainment have been tracking known issues with the game and holding maintenance to fix those issues; including the aforementioned purchasing bug.
The situation shares similarities to Warcraft III: Reforged. Blizzard Entertainment promised an improved experience, only for the final game to be a disaster. It lacked many of the promised new features, removed existing features, had worse graphics, and plenty of bugs. Thanks to updating the client for the original Warcraft III to be compatible, that meant many of the gameplay changes were forced upon it.
Backlash was so severe, Blizzard Entertainment’s Principle Designer Rob Gallerani clarified that Diablo II: Resurrected wouldn’t be replacing the original.
“No, absolutely not,” Gallerani insisted during a Diablo Q&A at BlizzConline 2021. “Everything you have about D2 currently will stay D2. This is a separate product, separate game; you can play both at the same time if you want!”
This is an option Overwatch fans no longer have.
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