Earlier today, Vice President of Blizzard Entertainment and Lead Designer/ Game Director of Overwatch, Jeff Kaplan delivered his first Developer Update video of 2018 detailing the public release of the upcoming map, Blizzard World, Overwatch League skins as well as ‘Hero 27’. He also confirmed that the special Chinese New Year event will be making its comeback – The Year of the Dog – and is ‘super fired up’ with what his team has in store for 2018.

In case you don’t have the time to view the video, here’s a quick summary of the stuff he talked about:

  • Overwatch League is ‘coming soon’ and players will be able to purchase it in the game. Overwatch League Commissioner, Nate Nanzer talks about the method to acquire the skins here. 
  • Blizzard World map  is coming soon – but not too soon. The hybrid map will be littered with Easter Eggs and that his team has been trying to implement several new approaches to the level design that will affect gameplay.
  • Blizzard are ‘well along the path with Hero 27’. Kaplan declined to discuss further about the release date of the hero as they are still working with it internally.
  • More hero to come ‘beyond Hero 27’. 2017 saw three new heroes introduced – Orisa, Doomfist & Moira, by the way.
  • Kaplan hinted on more maps apart from Blizzard World so our bet is that it will be heavily related to Hero 28.
  • The Blizzard team are still working on perfecting the experience for Competitive Play. The current strategy has always been to create ‘good, short-term, strategic and tactical fixes’ to competitive play. He cited the most recent change (removal of performance-based reward for Diamond and above) as one of the short-term changes.
  • In the long-term, the Blizzard team are still figuring out on where and what they want competitive play to be. The decision is yet to be determined.
  • Further the story development of Overwatch; continue telling the story of Overwatch which include showing how each members of Overwatch responded to Winston’s Recall.
  • Blizzard are putting ‘a lot of time’ into their upcoming events; The Year of the Dog for Lunar New Year; the next iteration of the lore-based event ‘Uprising’. Blizzard want to evolve it and has big ideas for it.
  • Anniversary Celebration will bring back the dance emotes along with the legendary skins.
  • Addition of more skins which are available to non-event specific, base lootboxes and they should drop as early as January 2018.

Kaplan closed the video saying that more details are to come as they get closer to the official releases of the items listed above. Not to mention the frequent bug fixes and game balances which occur quite often, Overwatch players have tons of stuff to look forward to in 2018.


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