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Overwatch 2 is almost as much fun as Overwatch, mostly because it's almost exactly the same thing

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Overwatch 2
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Blizzard

Blizzard’s Overwatch was a sensation, one of the biggest games of 2016. It was a hero shooter, which is a first-person shooter where you can choose from a number of different characters, each of which have different weapons and abilities. The game was instantly popular and became a huge game in esports. And as any good esports title is, it’s also a lot of fun to watch. A sequel has been rumored for years, and a few weeks ago, we finally got one—kind of.

Basically, Overwatch 2 is just…Overwatch. There are a few new characters, and the game is technically free now, but it plays the same, sounds the same, and looks the same. That’s not entirely a bad thing, given how good the original was, but it seems disingenuous at best when the game is so incredibly similar. So similar, in fact, that when I downloaded the game on my Nintendo Switch, it initially showed up as the first game. But instead of having a large roster of characters to choose from, you have a much smaller roster at first and unlock more characters by either playing a lot or by purchasing access to them with real money.

And now, supplanted by its sequel, the original Overwatch is gone forever. Not much has been lost in practice since if you played the original, all the characters from the base game will be unlocked for you. But, even still - if you bought the original Overwatch, you can no longer play that game, the one that you paid $60 for back in 2016. Sure, $10 a year isn’t necessarily a bad deal, but it seems to me that the deal isn’t “give Blizzard $60 and you can play this game for a while”, it was “give Blizzard $60 and you can play this game in perpetuity.”

Overwatch 2 is almost exactly as much fun to play as its predecessor, mostly because it is almost exactly the same thing. But at least now I can play it on Xbox, Playstation, PC, and Switch without having to buy separate copies on each. And that’s worth something, I guess.

Samuel McConnell is a games enthusiast who has been playing games in one form or another since 1991. He was born in northern Maine but quickly transplanted to Wichita.