What you need to know
- Since launch, fans of Overwatch 2 have been critical of how much the game’s cosmetics cost under its new Battle Pass and microtransaction shop system.
- Legendary skins cost a full 1,900 Overwatch Coins ($19), and other items like emotes and highlight intros are far from cheap, too.
- Players can only earn 60 Overwatch Coins a week through gameplay, which makes trying to acquire anything outside of the seasonal Battle Pass incredibly difficult.
- One fan calculated that to obtain every cosmetic from the first Overwatch, new Overwatch 2 players would have to spend over $10,000, highlighting just how expensive the shop prices are.
One of the biggest changes Overwatch 2 made to the Overwatch experience is that it removed the game’s loot box-based business model, replacing it with a free-to-play seasonal Battle Pass system and a microtransaction shop like the ones seen in many other modern shooter games. Instead of earning RNG loot boxes by leveling up, players can earn rewards directly from the Battle Pass and/or buy cosmetics directly from the shop using Overwatch Coins. This currency can be purchased with real money, or can be earned by completing gameplay challenges.
But while the new system in Overwatch 2 does take randomness out of the equation, fans have not been happy with how expensive skins and other cosmetics have become under it. Legendary skins cost 1,900 Overwatch Coins ($19), and unlocks like emotes, highlight intros, and sprays are far from cheap, too. And while you can get Overwatch Coins for free by completing gameplay challenges, it’s only possible to earn a paltry maximum of 60 per week. That means you’d need to do every single weekly in-game challenge for four of Overwatch 2’s nine-week seasons just to buy one Legendary skin.
One fan by the name of u/RevJoystick on Reddit calculated that at the 100 per $1 spent rate Overwatch Coins are being sold for, players would have to spend a grand total of $10,226 just to get all the cosmetics that were obtainable from loot boxes in the original game. And even though you can argue that not every player will want to get every unlock for every hero, the overall point still stands: Overwatch 2’s shop prices are very high, and since earning Overwatch Coins is a painfully slow process, the vast majority of the game’s cosmetics will feel impossible for players to obtain without forking over lots of cash.
Some will argue that this is the price of Overwatch being free-to-play now, but it’s clear that Blizzard has failed to strike a balance that fans are happy with. Even though I think Overwatch 2’s new monetization system is conceptually healthier and more player-friendly than the old RNG loot box model, it feels significantly worse right now because the monetary barrier in front of skins and other items feels insurmountable.
Moving forward, Blizzard is either going to have to lower the price of cosmetics or increase the rate at which players can earn Overwatch Coins through gameplay (perhaps both changes are needed). Hopefully the developer is open to making some tweaks, because as its exists right now, the new system simply feels way too greedy and unrewarding to engage with.
Overwatch 2 is available now on Xbox Series X|S, PS5, PS4, PC, and Nintendo Switch. It’s arguably one of the best Xbox shooters available, and since it’s free-to-play, it doesn’t cost anything to check it out. Alternatively, players can purchase the Overwatch 2: Watchpoint Pack that provides access to Season 1’s Premium Battle Pass, 2,000 Overwatch Coins, and a bundle of unique Legendary skins.
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