It's not even been a month since Overwatch 2 Season 8 launched. Still, eyes are already turning towards the next season to see what Blizzard Entertainment is cooking up. While it's still early days, there's the promise of many new changes on the horizon, with new Emerald Weapons, and competitive progress updates.
While we're still missing a lot of critical details about Overwatch 2 Season 9, here are some things players can expect from the next season, including the expected release date.
According to the current Season 8 battle pass timer, Overwatch 2 Season 9 should go live on February 20, 2024, with a fresh new battle pass for players to delve into. Developers haven't yet confirmed this expected release date, which could vary slightly.
At BlizzCon 2023, OW2 developers confirmed that a significant competitive update will come in Overwatch 2 Season 9. These changes will address community feedback, providing transparency and clarity with each player's current ranks and progression.
Players will see a progression bar to see how their rank progresses with extreme clarity and how much their previous game impacted their progress toward the next rank. These modifiers are "Advantage," "Streak," and "Calibration."
This new system lets players track their progress through each rank, whether that's through Open Queue or Role Queue. All OW2 ranks will remain the same, except a new rank called "Ultimate," which will be placed above Grandmaster.
With rank progression back in the game, placement games will also make a comeback in Overwatch 2. This means that when they've logged in once Season 9 has been released, players must complete ten placement matches after a soft rank reset every season to get their initial rank rating.
Competitive grouping restrictions will also be slightly eased in Season 9, enticing more players to try competitive modes. This new freedom means Bronze players can queue up with their friends in Platinum or Diamond in ranked play. This may increase queue times as the match-making service must find a similarly imbalanced team.
Emerald Weapons will also be introduced in Season 9, and they are purchaseable with Competitive Points (CP). However, players will be sad to know that any CP unspent at the end of Season 8 will be transformed into a legacy currency, only usable to buy Gold Weapons.
This means a shiny new Emerald Weapon can only be bought with the new competitive currency from the most recent season. You'd better get grinding ranked games for those hard-earned comp points!
These new, re-skinned weapons don't offer any in-game benefits, but they're a fun way of allowing players to flex their skills on their favorite hero. We have yet to determine how much Emerald Weapons will cost. Still, it'll probably be around 3-5K Competitive Points, like Gold Weapons. At BlizzCon 2023, developers also confirmed that they'll introduce new weapon skins every year to give players new things to grind for.
Following the success of Mauga's free trial weekend in November, Blizzard Entertainment will likely be releasing new hero Venture for a trial spin sometime in Season 9.
Since their release date will be in Season 10, which will be in April/May, Blizzard has plenty of time to consider community feedback and adjust Venture accordingly before their official release onto servers.
Little is known about Venture, but here's a brief rundown of their abilities that has been revealed so far.
Shoots out an AoE projectile that travels a short distance and explodes on contact with terrain or an enemy.
Venture burrows underground. While burrowed, Venture can move in any direction and is invulnerable. Venture can emerge from the ground in a vertical burst of movement, manually or automatically, when the ability duration runs out. They cause an AoE burst of damage when emerging from the ground.
Venture can forward-dash and damage enemies in their path. Upon activating the ability, Venture gains a 50 Shield HP that decays over a few seconds.
That's everything we know about the next Overwatch 2 season, Season 9! We're excited to equip our new Emerald Weapons and flex our skills in ranked play. These changes will make competitive modes feel more rewarding and fresh, with the ability to climb the ranked ladder.
Remember that some of these updates, like Venture's free trial, aren't yet set in stone and are subject to change until they're made live on Blizzard servers on February 20, 2024. We don't yet know the theme for the Season 9 battle pass, but watch this space! We'll have the latest updates right here for you.
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