Overwatch launched in late 2015 as a team-based, hero shooter starring a diverse and colorful cast of interesting characters. The rich universe that Blizzard built for the game has since been expanded through comic books, short stories, animated cinematics and more. And with Overwatch 2, Blizzard is putting even more of an emphasis on story with the inclusion of a full-fledged campaign and hundreds of hero missions.
During BlizzCon 2021 this month, Blizzard offered a deep-dive into Overwatch 2’s campaign and hero missions. PvE fans are undoubtedly going to be pleased.
Starting with the campaign, the story will focus on members of Overwatch being brought back together to investigate who is behind the second Omnic Uprising and just how widespread it is. Each one of the story missions will feature cinematic intros and outros that seamlessly cut into and out of gameplay.
This isn’t some tacked-on campaign either. It sounds like the story team is diving deeper into the lore and characters than ever before.
As far as the missions themselves, each one has its own custom map built for it. These maps are said to be “absolutely gigantic” with each city having an entire history written. So every detail or action within the city has a purpose or reason behind it.
Some of the maps and cities showed included India, which takes beats from recent Overwatch comics; the Gothenburg map which includes a section that takes players inside Torbjorn’s workshop; and a Toronto map that’s user siege by Null Sector. The Toronto map was probably the most intriguing as it takes place during a dynamic snowstorm. As the mission progressions, you could see the map getting more and more covered with snow until the final battle which is set during this giant snowstorm.
As I mentioned, Overwatch has a rich cast of characters and in these missions, we’ll finally get to witness them all interacting and working together on screen in ways we’ve never actually seen.
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The campaign will give you a choice of which hero you want to play as in a particular story mission and to accommodate this, Blizzard has created a branching dialogue system. Taking different heroes into a mission will result in different conversations, creating some replay value as well.
Blizzard didn’t get into how long the campaign will last. If I had to guess, I’d say the campaign will run 8-10 hours with the bulk of the PvE content comprised of Hero Missions, of which there are over 200.
As with many other Overwatch fans, my circle of gamer friends includes a mix of those who enjoy PvP and those who don’t. With the addition of a campaign and Hero missions, I can finally enjoy this wonderful franchise with my PvE-centric friends who may have been interested in the series but just didn’t like competitive gameplay.