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New Overwatch 2 players will need to unlock every classic hero

New players will have a massive task on their hands when Overwatch 2 launches in October 2022.
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Those who choose to pick up and play Overwatch 2 without playing the original Overwatch will face a major task immediately after booting the game. While the classic heroes of Overwatch will be available for everyone to play with, newbies will be required to unlock every single character – by overcoming a range of challenges.

While these heroes were originally launched over a number of months, allowing keen players to unlock them at a reasonable pace, Overwatch 2 will cram this process into a beginner’s mode. When new players join Overwatch 2, they’ll be required to take part in a ‘First Time User Experience’ (FTUE) which will unlock major game modes, and serve as an introduction to gameplay.

Once this is complete, players will be able to unlock every classic hero over the course of several matches. It’s believed it will take around 100 matches to unlock the full, original game roster which will likely take some time.

‘This focused experience eases new players into the world of Overwatch by teaching them about different modes, rules, and other high-level aspects of the game in an approachable way,’ Blizzard said in a new blog post. ‘While this process helps new players join the fun, it’s also an effective way to discourage disruptive behaviour and cheating.’

Read: Overwatch 2: Battle Pass and Seasons explained

There is a minor loophole to avoid the FTUE – single players can simply team up with a group to circumvent the requirements and get playing in a variety of modes. However, you will need to go through the FTUE and win 50 Quick Play matches to unlock Competitive mode, which may dampen the effectiveness of this loophole. If you want to play the entirety of Overwatch 2, prepare to grind for heroes first.

It appears this new player progression system is exclusive to newbies, with the achievements in these FTUE challenges being considered separate to the game’s Battle Passes. It’s only a means to familiarise new players with the gameplay systems and heroes, and to prevent griefers from flooding the game’s servers on launch.

When Overwatch 2 launches for PC and consoles on 4 October 2022, newbies will find a range of challenges waiting before they can hop into fully-fledged, competitive gameplay.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.