Overwatch 2 has killed any remaining hope for its future PvE missions, with the mode being scrapped in favour of going all-in on PvP

Overwatch 2 Tracer
(Image credit: Tyler C. / Activision Blizzard)

Blizzard has completely gutted its planned PvE content for Overwatch 2, and will instead "double down" on PvP. That's according to a Bloomberg newsletter and information that PC Gamer also corroborated separately. 

It's a disappointing conclusion to an 18-month wait, albeit one that's not all too surprising given last year's cancellation of the game's hero mode. Despite Overwatch 2 originally being pitched as an experience heavy on the PvE side of things when it was revealed in 2019, plans slowly started to deteriorate. In March 2022 it was announced that the PvE portion wouldn't be released with the rest of the game. While a trio of co-op missions were released in June last year, a $15 price tag and lack of replayability didn't do much in the way of enticing players.

The Bloomberg newsletter claims that poor sales from those missions shattered the team's chances of a bonus payout—while Blizzard has traditionally given its bonuses company-wide, a policy change introduced by Activision means that rewards are distributed to teams based on individual franchise performance. That was followed by almost the entire PvE team being laid off as part of the brutal mass cull that happened in January.

It appears that fingers are being pointed at Activision and Microsoft for the incredibly poor handling of Overwatch 2's PvE modes. The Bloomberg newsletter cites an ever-increasing strain between Blizzard and Activision, something which PC Gamer has also heard from separate sources. Whatever the reason, it's a tragic outcome for both players interested in PvE missions and the developers who've spent the last handful of years working on them.

As someone who was largely excited at the prospect of co-op when Overwatch 2 was first announced, I'm pretty damn gutted. It's a game that deserves a hell of a lot better than what it is now, and I would have loved to have explored its lore and characters in a more meaningful way. For now, I can only hope its pivot to pure PvP will bring the game to a better place. Sadly, it's feeling increasingly likely that it won't be long until it gets put down. 

Mollie Taylor
Features Producer

Mollie spent her early childhood deeply invested in games like Killer Instinct, Toontown and Audition Online, which continue to form the pillars of her personality today. She joined PC Gamer in 2020 as a news writer and now lends her expertise to write a wealth of features, guides and reviews with a dash of chaos. She can often be found causing mischief in Final Fantasy 14, using those experiences to write neat things about her favourite MMO. When she's not staring at her bunny girl she can be found sweating out rhythm games, pretending to be good at fighting games or spending far too much money at her local arcade.