Part of what makes Overwatch feel so alive is the connections between the characters and the maps. Each map is filled with lore tidbits and details about the world and its inhabitants. The best examples of these connections are like when the Numbani airport was destroyed leading up to the release of Doomfist, or the tragic past of Reinhardt revealed through the map of Eichenwalde.
Despite there being 28 maps and 32 heroes, there are still a handful of maps with no connections to any specific hero. These may be linked to lore or group affiliations, or not even at all. Thinking of what characters or new stories could come next, these maps could provide hints or things to expect:
At first glance, the map of Hollywood seems to fit in perfectly with the setting. The movie posters in the attackers’ spawn showcasing omnic actors and Hana Song place it in the world. Yet there is not a single hero that fits here lore-wise.
The story of Hollywood is that there is growing anti-omnic sentiment in the movie world. This makes directors such as Hal-Fred Glitchbot prime targets in the conflict. As Glitchbot makes his way through the sets to his VIP trailer, he needs extra security from these threats.
Reaper is a likely candidate to get added here in the future. His hometown is Los Angeles, and he has spearheaded numerous terrorist attacks across the globe. This one would prove extra divisive and chaotic, just as the Mondatta assassination did. Widowmaker could try it again, or Sombra could try to blackmail Glitchbot as she did with Katya Volskaya.
Everyone’s favorite map for boops, Ilios has only a light association to the existing lore. With the Colossus of Rhodes in the distance, there is an archaeological dig occurring in the ruins above the towns. Revealed in a tidbit onboard the spawn airships, Talon has been spotted in the area. They seem to be after whatever the archaeologists have found.
That is all there is. A translated ticker tape in Lijiang Tower says “Ancient Greek statues emerge in Ilios to reproduce the sun.” Whatever this maybe would be quite powerful. Whether it turns out to be energy generation or some other ancient power, only time will tell.
A strictly Arcade map, this 2018 addition lets players explore ruins within Petra in Jordan. But wait, there are no heroes from Jordan. To date, there have been no Overwatch missions to Jordan or anything like that. The only information linking this map elsewhere are messages on computers in the map.
The same organization is in charge of this excavation as well as Ilios. One of the messages states that they have found statues of Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite. These are three famous Greek Goddesses, so it is quite peculiar that they showed up in ancient Jordanian ruins. Talon is likely to come after it, given their interest in the Ilios findings. But that is the only association between this map and the playable heroes.
The message also mentioned a new exploration in Thailand, which refers to…
Another Arcade-only map and the last of the archaeological maps, Ayutthaya came out in the 2018 Lunar New Year event. It was designed specifically for Capture-The-Flag. The map is split in half, with one side being modern and the other an ancient temple. There is nothing more known about this map, other than the allusion to it in the Petra emails.
This is the map with the least known about it, and would be a good jumping-off point for new lore or heroes.
The Lijiang Tower is home to Lucheng Interstellar, the company that built the Horizon Lunar Colony. They also built the Interstellar Journey Space Station, which underwent an emergency shutdown. It is not clear if this is the station where Sigma’s experiment went wrong, or if it is a different space station.
The Control Center on the map is the base of Lucheng’s operations. A holographic model of the space station hovers above the point, and Dr. Harold Winston had a desk and office there. The Gardens map acts as the entrance to the Lucheng operations but does not host anything of note relating to the heroes. Night Market has many news tickers, with translations reading: “According to reports Soldier: 76 sighting in Dorado, Mexico. The famous climatologist Mei-Ling Zhou returning to the Himalayas”; “Breaking News: Interstellar Journey Space Station suffered a sudden emergency failure, Tracer and Winston appeared again, is Overwatch back? Ancient Greek statues emerge in Ilios to reproduce the sun.”
This could be a great place to build from, adding new lore around Sigma as well as space exploration and technology.
This list would be remiss without it, as Blizzard World is a complete fan-service map. Highlighting many other games made by Blizzard Entertainment, there is obviously no attachment or lore reveals for the Overwatch universe. People have suggested decorating sections with emblems of Overwatch League champions and/or MVPs, but this seems doubtful at least at the current time.
Honorable Mention: Havana/Rialto and Oasis
Havana and Rialto both are technically attached to heroes as they were the sites of Overwatch and Blackwatch missions. But the maps themselves do not reveal anything about the lore or characters therein. They are just settings for greater events. Likely not much more lore will sprout from each map, so they get Honorable Mentions.
Oasis is on the other end of the spectrum. A city run by scientists called Magistrates, this map is technically associated with Moira. She is involved with the Genetics sector, but her presence is not seen at all throughout the map. She was released after the map hit the live servers, but Blizzard has made plenty of changes after release to tell new lore or tease new heroes. This map feels like it only has a nominal association to her, thus getting an Honorable mention. However, there is plenty of opportunity to the lore to expand from here, so keep an eye out.
Featured image courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment.
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