$45 for a skin? Overwatch 2 may be free, but it looks like the cosmetics definitely won’t be, and this may just be the start of what’s in store for the future of Overwatch.
Blizzard has somehow found another way to stir up headlines in the gaming sphere, and yet again for another bad reason. From the recent backlash against Diablo Immortals’ monetization and how it could quite literally cost a player upwards of $300,000 to $600,000 just to max out a single character, you think Blizzard would have understood the backlash and thought differently for Overwatch 2 when it comes to monetization. However, this couldn’t be any further from the truth, or so it seems.
The recent backlash stems from a survey conducted by Blizzard themselves, in which players were asked how much they would pay for cosmetic items in the game, and the prices Blizzard asked the players about ranged from $4.99 for 3 sprays, $9.99 for weapon charms, $24.99 for a legendary skin, $29.99 for a legendary skin bundle, and $44.99 for a mythic skin.
Of course, these prices are outrageous when you consider that one mythic skin would normally cost $44.99 and that there are currently 33 characters and more planned for Overwatch 2, and if you were to purchase just one mythic skin for each character currently available in the game, it would equate to $1,484.67, which is absurd. This goes without saying that the backlash has been insane, and there’s a good reason for that, with many fans of the IP expressing their opinions and concerns on Twitter and Reddit, with users all agreeing that this is a terrible decision and really will damage the games’ longevity.
However, why are the prices like this, and are they actually set prices? Firstly, no, these prices are not set in stone, as a spokesperson from Blizzard came to quickly respond to the recent backlash and had this to say:
This survey is entirely intended to better understand player preferences for different types of Overwatch 2 cosmetics. Prices displayed in the survey were randomized per user and are not indicative of final pricing.
But Why Blizzard, Why?
However, why are the prices potentially going to be this high? Due to the recent laws on loot box systems in gaming, Overwatch 2 will not have a loot box system or currency system like it did previously in Overwatch. Therefore, it seems the only way for Blizzard to actually make money now is through straight-up microtransactions, as, again, even Overwatch 2 will be free to play. Therefore, it seems like they are going to heavily monetize the game through microtransactions if you can even call them that at these price ranges.
The survey was conducted solely to determine how much fans would be willing to pay for cosmetic items in Overwatch 2. The spokesperson addressed the situation, stating that the numbers were “randomly generated” but many fans are still skeptical and are even more hesitant about Overwatch 2 than they were previously.
We’ve seen Blizzard not be afraid to heavily monetize games at a disgusting amount, but we’ve also seen games like FIFA, 2K, Madden, Valorant, and League of Legends not be afraid to trust and take advantage of their player base through microtransactions, so we’ll have to wait and see if Blizzard learned from the survey backlash and if these numbers were “randomly generated,” or maybe the game we once knew and loved is going to be a drastically different game to play.