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Here’s What We Know About The Overwatch 2 Beta, Its New Graphics Engine, & Ping System

The developers of Overwatch 2 and game director Aaron Keller answered a lot of questions during the official Reddit AMA recently. Here’s a quick breakdown of the chat; the full Reddit thread is here.

The Game Might Have A Ping System

Well, they’re not sure. Aaron Keller said that there’s a prototype of this feature at Blizzard right now, but he can’t say whether it’ll be in the final release of the game.

“We’ve definitely considered this. In fact we have a prototype of it running internally right now. We don’t make a habit of promising things to players until they are actually announced and I’m not going to break that tradition right now (I’m sure I’ll blow it at some other point in this AMA), but it is something that we are excited about as a team and are working through issues currently.”

The Game Will Have Crossplay

Blizzard’s technical director John Lafleur said the game will most likely have crossplay than cross-progression.

“We’re pretty excited about the possibilities of cross-play and cross-progression, but we don’t have anything to announce today. However, given the additional complexities of cross-progression, it would probably make the most sense to tackle cross-play, first and then explore progression as a potential add-on, if we go this route.”

The Game Might Have A Beta This Year

It’s too soon to confirm full details, but Lafleur said there “hopefully” will be a beta for the game.

“Almost certainly, yes. If I knew when, I couldn’t tell you. If I told you, I’d have to kill you. But [Aaron Keller] is our resident secret-leaker, so you might give him a try! :)”

The Overwatch 2 Engine Is Mightily Improved From The Original

Here’s what Lafleur said about the new game’s engine.

“Yes, we’ve had a lot of changes to the game engine. Many optimizations, better lighting, and many new features have been added. PvE has also allowed us to look much more at how our environments tell our story, so we’ve added many features that help with that.

In addition, since the hardware landscape has changed a lot since Overwatch was launched, we’re taking the opportunity (both on the artist side and the technical side) to beef up our high-end features and assets.”

The Original Game Will Not Have A 120FPS Patch

“We don’t have any plans to do so, at the moment. We would have to invest a non-trivial amount of time to upgrade original Overwatch to recognize and separately treat the PS5 (it involves changing the platform SDK). Instead, we’re taking that time to focus on making OW2 the best we can on the next gen consoles.”

Our guess? You have to play the sequel to get all the next-gen goodies and graphical upscaling features.

For more on Overwatch 2, here’s the recent multiplayer PvP video stream for the upcoming sequel. Expect the game to be out in 2022. Or not.

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