The new premium battle pass for Overwatch 2 may be obtained for free, but it requires 17 weeks of playing time.
The new seasonal battle pass system for Overwatch 2 will debut the next month and feature a free growth route and a premium path that costs money. One thousand Overwatch Coins, the game’s new premium currency, or $10, which is about £8.60 or AU$14.80, may be used to purchase access to that premium track. You’ll be able to either earn Coins in-game by completing Weekly Challenges or purchase them directly using real-world money.
Those Weekly Challenges will only reward the most dedicated players, though. Completing all 11 of them in a week will net you a total of 60 Coins. If you were to complete all challenges, it would take you 17 weeks to accumulate enough Coins to buy a premium battle pass without spending any cash.
The game’s milestone system further rewards consistent playtime. You’ll earn 30 Coins for completing four Weekly Challenges, an extra 20 for ticking off eight more, and a final 10 Coins if you complete all 11. You’ll get zilch if you only finish one or two of the tasks, encouraging you to complete bunches of them at a time.
The long road to premium
Whether you’ll be able to complete the Weekly Challenges looks to be a question of time, rather than skill. Most can be finished just by playing Overwatch 2 and successfully winning matches. The weekly challenges we were shown included:
- Win 10 games
- Win 10 games queued as All Roles
- Win 20 games in Unranked or Competitive Play
- Win 7 games in any Arcade mode
- Win 10 games each as 2 different roles in quick play or competitive play
- Deal or boost a total of 125,000 damage (Total Mayhem doesn’t count)
- Mitigate a total of 40,000 damage (Total Mayhem doesn’t count)
Speaking about the Weekly Challenges in a recent press briefing, Overwatch commercial lead and VP Jon Spector told TechRadar Gaming that the development team wanted to avoid overly granular tasks. Players shouldn’t feel required to change their playstyle, or use tactics that would undermine their team, just to earn Overwatch Coins.
But Blizzard is confident that players will recognize the value of Overwatch 2’s new premium battle pass. It expects fans will happily pay for access rather than grind for free entry.
“Our design goal and philosophy for the battle pass was [to provide] overwhelming, obvious value for players,” said Spector.
“If you go through and look at all the stuff you can earn, both for free and on the premium track of the battle pass, there’s no reaction other than ‘Oh my god, this stuff’s all amazing and there’s so much of its – I can’t believe it’s all just $10’.”
The battle pass mechanism in Overwatch 2 is similar to that in other live service games. Season passes are available in Fortnite, Warzone, Destiny 2, and Fall Guys all for about the same price. The majority of them also include methods for progressively amassing premium cash over the course of several months in order to acquire a paid battle pass.
The method Blizzard is using to monetize Overwatch 2 is not entirely novel. The fact that it isn’t as forceful as Diablo Immortal’s, whose was criticised for penalising free-to-play players, will certainly delight the fans.