Overwatch 2 concept art hints at battle pass and possible free-to-play feature

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Images of Overwatch 2’s first concept menus have been released by a UI artist, giving some hints of possible new features coming to the game.

Jayson Kirby, who worked on Overwatch between 2017 and 2020, posted early user experience concepts for the sequel on his Artstation page. (opens in a new tab). It shows off the minimalist UI that has been seen in previous Overwatch 2 gameplay reveals, resulting in a very cohesive look.

However, Kirby’s work also shows a glimpse of possible additions to Overwatch 2. Most notable is the inclusion of a battle pass in the menus, which is currently not a feature of the Overwatch experience.

In the current version, the only real reward for continued play, beyond your character’s frontier and moving up the competitive ladder, are the loot boxes you receive when you level up.

A battle pass would offer players a new way to level up and earn rewards by continuing to play. Things like the Fortnite Battle Pass have become staples for each new season of Epic’s battle royale content and have proven hugely popular.

Genji slices Talon agents

(Image credit: Blizzard)

Interestingly, battle passes are usually used in games that have a free play element. It’s speculative, but it could suggest that Overwatch 2 might have some sort of discontinued section, like PvP, which is free.

In another UI example on the artist page, there is an animation that shows a map for a guild that supports up to 520 players. It seems to be used as a way for like-minded players to find and play with each other.

Of course, this was all worked out years ago, and Kirby hasn’t been on the project since 2020. It’s very likely that the final menu design and functionality has changed drastically since then. None of this should be considered a lock on the final product.

If nothing else, it shows that these concepts were at some point considered by Blizzard. It is impossible to say if they will be part of the final version. It seems unlikely that a battle pass will come with the Overwatch 2 beta, which lands later this month, but with the way the game is segmented from its PvP and PvE how it all works together, in the end, it’s anyone’s guess.

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