Here’s exactly when you can start playing Overwatch 2

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Overwatch 2 Blizzcon 2019 art

After six years, Overwatch is shutting down. In its place will be the shiny new sequel, Overwatch 2. Despite a slew of development issues and points of confusion, the game still holds a lot of fun. With the release of Overwatch 2 just around the corner, here is everything you need to know about when the game officially launches, how to pre-load, and when the original Overwatch shuts down for good.

When is the Overwatch 2 release time?

Overwatch 2 launches on October 4, 2022, for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series consoles, Nintendo Switch, and PC. Launch times for Overwatch 2 are the same on consoles and PC. An in-game message in the original Overwatch states that “servers should begin to come back online on October 4, 2022, 11 a.m. Pacific.” So, unofficially, the sequel may be up and running as early as 2 p.m. Eastern. Officially, however, the exact launch time of the game is as follows:

  • United States East Coast: 3 p.m. Eastern
  • United States West Coast: 12 p.m. Pacific
  • United Kingdom: 8 p.m. BST
  • Europe: 9 p.m. CEST

Some regions will unlock on October 5, as follows:

  • Korea: 4 am KST
  • Australia: 6 am AEDT

When can you pre-load Overwatch 2?

PC players can pre-load Overwatch 2 through the client right now. If you have enabled automatic updates, you might have pre-loaded it without knowing. If not, head to the Overwatch page in and click the gear icon next to the “Play” button. Click it and check for updates. Once the update is downloaded you should see a message that reads “Pre-release content downloaded.” The install size of Overwatch 2 on PC is about 50 GB, so clear out any space ahead of time if you need it.

On consoles, the Overwatch 2 install size is around 30 GB. Console pre-load starts about three hours before the full launch of the game.

  • United States West Coast: 9 a.m. Pacific
  • United States East Coast: 12 p.m. Eastern
  • United Kingdom: 5 p.m. BST
  • Europe: 6 p.m. CEST

How do you set up SMS Protect for Overwatch 2?

New characters like Kiriko will be joining the roster at launch.


Overwatch 2 will require all players to have a account linked to a phone number. This new security measure is to help combat toxic behavior and make it easier for Blizzard to enforce bans better.

To add a phone number to your account go to the “Account Details” section on the sidebar. The third section of “Account Details” is the “Phone Number” section, this is where you can add your number to your account.

Be aware that Blizzard has said certain types of phone numbers will not work with SMS Protect. Here are the limitations according to Blizzard:

  • Messaging apps like iMessage (iOS) or WhatsApp (iOS, Android) are not supported.
  • Mobile phones with prepaid plans may not work with the phone notification service.
  • Phone notifications cannot be used with Voice over IP (VoIP), and VoIP numbers that are transferred to a local provider are not eligible for the service.

When does Overwatch 1 shut down?

Overwatch 2 will be replacing the first Overwatch game when it goes live. The servers for Overwatch 1 will be shut down on Monday, October 3. If you’re reading this, then the original Overwatch has already been taken offline. The exact shutdown times are as follows:

  • United States West Coast: 9 a.m. Pacific
  • United States East Coast: 12 p.m. Eastern
  • UK: 5 p.m. BST
  • Europe: 6 p.m. CEST

Do Overwatch 1 credits transfer to Overwatch 2?

Players who have put countless hours into the original Overwatch are sure to wonder if their hard-earned currencies will transfer over to the sequel. The answer is yes, with a caveat.

Blizzard confirmed in late June 2022 that all currencies from Overwatch will indeed transfer over to the sequel, including Credits, OWL tokens, and competitive points.

However, Overwatch Commercial Lead Jon Spector shared that “our new virtual currency will be the main currency, and there will be things in OW2 that will not be purchasable with those OW1 credits.” Meaning that even though currency will transfer, it may not be of much use.

Cosmetics will transfer between Overwatch 1 and Overwatch 2.


Will Overwatch 1 cosmetics transfer to Overwatch 2?

Unlike Overwatch currency, players of the original game can rest easy when it comes to cosmetics. Everything from skins, sprays, and voice lines will transfer over to Overwatch 2. On PC this is an automatic thing, just load up Overwatch 2 and see all your pretty items.

Console players will need to merge their console account with a account. To do this follow these steps:

  1. Log in to Overwatch from your console account.
  2. Follow the on-screen prompts to scan a QR Code on your mobile phone.
  3. Enter the code displayed on your console to connect to or create your Blizzard Account.
  4. Once complete, you will be prompted to confirm your account upon the next game login to merge your accounts.
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