Overwatch took the internet by storm in the 2010s, so it’s no surprise the sequel had the internet buzzing – however it seems now players are not happy with Overwatch 2.
In its first week Overwatch 2 shattered streaming records with over 1.5 million concurrent viewers on Twitch. Blizzard was pulling out all the stops for this game, between sponsored streams and Twitch drops that gave beta access, all was a recipe for big views.
The problem with such a bold strategy is that the product your advertising has to actually be good, and at the time of writing this article it seems like players are not happy with Overwatch 2 – the game currently has one thousand concurrent viewers.
That is over a 99% drop in players in mere weeks since the game’s big reveal, and for a game following in Overwatch’s footsteps, it is downright embarrassing.
Gone are the sponsored streams and to nobody’s surprise, none of those big streamers stuck around anyway. Even if the beta access drops were still an option it looks like nobody really cares.
So what happened? How did one of the most anticipated video game sequels in recent time absolutely fall apart so quickly?
Upon my investigation, it looks like players are not happy with Overwatch 2 and the changes made to the game – at least in its current state with its beta having just concluded.
The most common gripe I can see, to put it simply, is that Overwatch 2 does not add anything new to the game, but rather removed things instead.
Most notable of all the changes or things removed is the 6v6 matches – which have been replaced with smaller 5v5 matches.
Searching Overwatch 2 on YouTube will quickly net you with videos mostly talking negatively about the game.
Probably the most prolific Overwatch 2 video was uploaded by Videogamedunkey. The video is titled “Overwatch 2 a Pathetic Preview” and has amassed 4.1 million views in just 10 days.
In this video Dunkey states “You can never escape the feeling that you are still just playing Overwatch 1” while also mentioning that the game feels more like a small patch to Overwatch and note a true sequel.
The new game type “Push” is just a reverse of Payload mode where instead of pushing an object from one side of the map to the other, you’re helping a robot push a wall from the middle of the map outward.
The new hero Sojourn also lacks any interesting abilities and gimmicks. Sure, she slides better than other characters but other than that the common feedback is she adds nothing to bring further excitement to the game.
On top of this, the maps are re-used from the original title except all of the little visual details have been removed creating a very flat and sterile look. This was supposedly implemented by Blizzard to “clean up the maps.”
The other big underwhelming claim is the “updated graphics” which appear to be nothing more than changing the time of day to create a sunset or moonlight atmosphere.
The visual pop and splashes of color from player skills have been removed too, leaving everything to be a pale white instead – all done to once again “clean up the map.”
Now while I don’t personally put much stock in YouTubers or streamers, it’s a depressing truth that the current state of video gaming requires having video creators and streamers on board if you want your game to be successful.
This very real bullet point that game developers pursue in video creators and streamers highlights another major problem Blizzard seems to have.
I never want to see video games fail, I’m sure plenty of employees at Blizzard worked their asses off making this game and fought tooth and nail with producers about creative decisions.
Unfortunately, their efforts at this point seem to have not paid off. Between a lack of viewers, negative publicity from big streamers & influencers, and an overall lack of new content, Overwatch 2 has crashed to the bottom of the mountain and has a long and difficult climb back to the top.
Overwatch 2 is planned for a release across Windows PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. What do you think? Did you try the Beta for Overwatch 2? Do you believe Blizzard have what it takes to return Overwatch to its former glory or is Overwatch’s watch finally over?
This is an editorial piece. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of, and should not be attributed to, Niche Gamer as an organization.