The Overwatch 2 beta is almost here, ending a two-year content shortage. Overwatch hasn’t had a major update since adding the hero Echo in April 2020. Since then, the wait for the sequel has been long.
Rather than waiting for the PvE side of Overwatch 2 to be completed, Blizzard is allowing players to try out the PvP content before the game’s full release. The big change from the original Overwatch is that it’s now 5v5 instead of 6v6 with teams consisting of one tank, two damage and two support players.
The Overwatch 2 beta is jam-packed with content, so we’ve put together this one-stop-shop of all the important information you need to know – like the beta’s release date, which characters are being reworked, which new maps, heroes, and characters. game modes are included. There’s a lot to discover, so here’s everything you need to know about the Overwatch 2 PvP beta.
Overwatch 2 beta: get straight to the point
- What is that? Our first chance to play Overwatch 2
- When can I play it? April 26
- What can I play on? This first phase of the beta is only on PC
Overwatch 2 beta: release date and platforms
The Overwatch 2 beta will go live on April 26. As this is a closed beta, you can only participate if you are invited, although we expect many people to be admitted to keep the online population healthy.
If you want to participate here how to sign up for overwatch 2 beta.
How long will the Overwatch 2 beta last?
Blizzard hasn’t said how long the Overwatch 2 beta will last – we only know when the first phase will launch and what it includes. We don’t know yet if it will be a limited-time beta or an ongoing release.
Often, beta tests are short, lasting a week or less, giving developers a chance to test their servers and see if they’ll hold up at launch. However, we anticipate that the Overwatch 2 beta will likely last longer. Overwatch had extended alpha and beta periods where Blizzard incorporated player feedback to change the game. Overwatch’s first beta ran from October 27, 2015, to January 21. A second beta ran from February 9 to May 9, before the game was released on May 24.
Since no end date has been announced for the Overwatch 2 beta, we believe it will have an equally long testing period. We contacted Blizzard for confirmation.
Is the Overwatch 2 beta on consoles?
Unfortunately, console players won’t be part of Overwatch 2’s initial beta testing phase. The beta launching this month is exclusive to PC. However, Blizzard states in the official Overwatch 2 Beta FAQ that the “first closed beta will only be available on PC, but we plan to include console players in future betas.”
Overwatch 2 beta: new game modes
The Overwatch 2 PvP beta includes a new game mode called Push. Although this is the first time we can play Push, the mode was actually revealed in 2019.
The rules of Push are easy to understand: it’s basically reverse tug of war…with a robot. In the middle of the map, there is a robot named TWO that you fight to control. If your team takes possession of TWO, the machine starts pushing a barricade towards your opponents spawn. If they take control of TWO, the robot will push a different barricade towards your spawn.
In order to control TWO, you must have more players in its vicinity than your opponents. If you lose control of TWO, the robot will quickly move towards your barricade and start pushing it towards your spawn. There are checkpoints along the way that open up new spawn points for teams so they can get back into action faster.
If you can get TWO to push your opponents barricade to the end point on their side of the map, then it’s an instant win (and vice versa). Otherwise, the one whose barricade is closest to its end point loses.
If you want to see this mode in action, here’s a showcase match from last year’s Overwatch League Finals.
Overwatch 2 beta: characters
The Overwatch 2 beta includes all 32 Overwatch characters, plus new hero Sojourn.
However, with Overwatch 2 moving from 6v6 to 5v5, Blizzard has tweaked each character, tweaking their damage, health regen, and health pool. Blizzard also completely reworked some heroes, including Sombra, Doomfist, Bastion, and Orisa.
Here is a list of all the heroes coming to Overwatch 2.
- fist of doom
- soldier 76
- wrecking ball
Overwatch 2 beta: new characters
Revealed at BlizzCon 2019, new hero Sojourn will debut in this first beta of Overwatch 2.
Sojourn is the game’s first Canadian hero and one of the original members of Overwatch before the group disbanded. She is a recognized leader of the group and featured as an overseer in the Storm Rising Archives event. She is now set to join the reformed Overwatch and take on Talon.
Blizzard released this trailer for the character ahead of the beta release:
Blizzard also detailed Sojourn’s kit, which looks pretty fun, with both mobility and damage in spades.
- Railgun (Primary Fire) – Rapid-fire projectiles that generate energy on impact.
- Railgun (Secondary Fire) – High impact shot that consumes stored energy.
- Electric slide – Slip on the ground that can be canceled in a high jump.
- Disruptive Shot – Launch an energy shot that slows and damages enemies within it
- Overclock (Ultimate) – Railgun energy automatically charges for a short duration and charged shots pierce enemies.
To see it all in action, be sure to check out Sojourn’s latest gameplay trailer.
Overwatch 2 beta: character overhaul
Bastion has always been a tricky character to balance in Overwatch. Its damage potential is massive, and against novice players it tears teams that don’t know how to deal with it. However, he is almost useless in higher levels, where players take advantage of his lack of mobility. It’s not a great place for a hero, so Blizzard is looking at it again.
In its current revamp, Bastion can no longer self-repair, but it does gain an alt-fire which is a short fuse grenade that you can bounce off walls and around corners before it explodes.
Bastion now has a much slower burst fire when firing on the move, making his primary fire feel pinpoint. While in turret mode, Bastion can now move at reduced speed, although this is an ability with a cooldown, so it cannot be used all the time.
Bastion also has a new Ultimate where it goes into artillery mode and you can select three sections of the map to mortar.
Sombra’s redesign reduces her crowd control abilities but makes her more of an offensive hero. She can now hack in stealth mode (although briefly revealed). His hack doesn’t last as long, but hacked enemies are now revealed through walls and take more damage.
His EMP no longer breaks shields, only damages victims for 40% health, but debuffs from a hack are still applied to affected characters. These changes make Sobra a really dangerous hero and one you’ll probably want to be very careful of.
fist of doom
Doomfist is seeing the most drastic change as Blizzard has confirmed that it will be moving from a damage role to a tank role. What hasn’t been revealed are his abilities and how he works as a tank.
However, GGRecon sources report that he has increased his health, but his signature Rocket Punch damage has been reduced. Although, apparently his new ability allows him to absorb damage to recharge his Rocket Punch damage at a one-hit potential.
It is also reported that his Rising Uppercut and Seismic Slam are now an ability that starts with him knocking people into the air and then slamming them to the ground for area of effect damage.
We don’t have any official word on Orisa’s pending revamp yet, but GGRecon reports that all of its abilities have changed except for Fortify. She now has a spear which is the heart of her new kit. Energy Spear allows him to throw the spear, and another ability, Spear Spin, destroys projectiles and allows him to move faster and knock enemies back.
Her ultimate is now called Terra Lance and pulls opponents towards her and she takes less damage as the ability is channeled. The longer it is channeled, the more damage it inflicts.
Overwatch 2 Beta: Maps
Like Overwatch heroes, all maps from the first game will make an appearance in the Overwatch 2 beta, except for assault maps.
Assault maps have been a problem since Overwatch launched, as they can either quickly snowball with a party earning an easy victory, or become increasingly difficult to capture checkpoints over time. .
In this first beta, the development team decided to focus on Push instead, with two cards in this mode. There are also two other new maps, namely the New York-based Midtown map, which is a hybrid map, and the Monte Carlo-themed Circuit Royal Escort map.
Here is a full list of maps included in the beta:
- Lijiang Tower
- Road 66
- Point of view: Gibraltar
- Royal Tour
- blizzard world
- King’s Row
Cards don’t come back
- Horizon Lunar Colony
- Temple of Anubis
- Volskaya Industries