Recently there was a rumor that Overwatch 2 would have some big news coming out at Blizzcon 2021, which will be in an online format in February 2021. According to the rumor, this news would affect the Overwatch League 2021 season. Metro_OW, someone who has been connected to big Overwatch related rumors in the past, stated that “next year’s Overwatch League opening date will be changed to April and Overwatch 2’s release date or beta may be revealed at BlizzCon 2021.”
When asked about this rumor, an Overwatch team executive responded with some uncertainty, “who knows, we don’t even know when OW2 is coming.”
The full tweet from @OverwatchNaeri can be seen below.
BlizzCon 2021 Overwatch 2 Release and Beta News@Metro_OW stated that next year's Overwatch League opening date will be changed to April, and Overwatch 2's release date or beta may be revealed at BlizzCon 2021. pic.twitter.com/bT6PRn7Gk7
— Naeri X 나에리 (@OverwatchNaeri) October 18, 2020
For many in the Overwatch League community, there has been the hope that there would be an announcement of some sort at Blizzcon 2021 for Overwatch 2. They believe that Overwatch 2 will be a sort of resurgence for the former Game of the Year. This would, in turn, help the Overwatch League as new characters, graphics, maps and game modes would add quite a bit of excitement to a game that at times in its history has felt very stale.
While the fans are definitely excited about the rumor, the response from the OWL team exec is not an uncommon one. When asking some OWL players about the new game, they have also seemed to be in the dark about anything related to it. This brings with it plenty of questions. Is Blizzard just deciding this major announcement? If so, why are they not coordinating it with the Overwatch League when the livelihood of all its members are connected with these decisions?
While this response does not rule out any major announcement about Overwatch 2 at Blizzcon 2021, it could mean a few things.
The first is that Blizzard is not keeping, at least some of the major individuals in the Overwatch League, updated with how things are going for a game that will greatly affect them. This is potentially understandable as they are likely trying to keep too many leaks from coming out. That said, it is also worrying that if the rumor about the start date being moved back is true and team execs are not aware of it, then it feels like a breakdown in communication.
Also, if players are expected to compete on a new game with an unknown release date how much practice will they get, if any at all? Continuing that thought, why wouldn’t Blizzard want the best players in the world playtesting all the new aspects of their game? The offseason has only just started but it feels like something should be known for the people who are playing Overwatch for their careers.
In the past, this separation of the OWL and Overwatch/Blizzard team has not been an uncommon occurrence. Between players being disgruntled with the meta, a lack of original support in-game and more, Overwatch and its League have had their struggles.
Lastly, it is important to remember, that the leak or parts of it are simply incorrect. It seems like the part about Overwatch 2 getting a major announcement at Blizzcon 2021 is almost a given at this point. If this ends up being incorrect then there is a whole other set of major issues for Overwatch. But if the part about the OWL getting moved back is false then that either means Overwatch 2 is coming earlier and more in line with how the season started in 2020 or it means more waiting for Overwatch fans.
Fans of both OWL and Overwatch as a whole want this rumor to be true. However, with OWL players and executives in the dark about future plans, audiences will need to take any OW2 rumors with a grain of salt. If the rumors are true, then BlizzCon 2021 will be an exciting start to 2021. If they aren’t, all fans might be in the long haul for Blizzard’s next big game.
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