Overwatch 2’s first beta officially begins this afternoon – are you playing?

All right, I'll give it to you. In many places.

We’re just an hour away from the beta launch of Overwatch 2, which ought to please everyone but folks who simply liked Overwatch’s meta better.

As of this afternoon, “selected players” will see a rollout of invites through a welcome mail with instructions on how to download the current build. If you want in, make sure you’ve opted in on the game’s official site on your Battlenet account. “While players selected initially should all receive access on the first day, we may extend invitations to more players at later periods in this test,” Blizzard says. You’ll also need to already own the game (or have it installed as a trial), be able to test on PC (as it’s not open to consolers yet), and live in NA, SA, Europe, Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, or Southeast Asia.

There’s another way to get in: You can link your Battlenet account with Twitch and watch Overwatch 2 beta streams that Blizzard is promoting until you get a beta access drop. There’s no NDA for streamers or for you.

The beta is expected to conclude on May 17th, and nope, your progress won’t carry over into the next test, of which there will be more.

“Since the Overwatch PvP Beta is still evolving, some features from the current live game won’t be present in the beta,” Blizzard warns. “Some examples include Competitive mode, profiles, and endorsements. This reflects the game work in progress state as well as our initial areas of focus for testing.”

Activision-Blizzard is considered a controversial gaming company owing to a long string of scandals over the last few years, including the Blitzchung boycott, mass layoffs, labor disputes, and executive pay fiasco. In 2021, the company was sued by California for fostering a work environment rife with sexual harassment and discrimination, the disastrous corporate response to which compounded Blizzard’s ongoing pipeline issues and the widespread perception that its online games are in decline. Multiple state and federal agencies are investigating the company as employees strike and call for Bobby Kotick’s resignation. As of 2022, the company is being acquired by no less than Microsoft.
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