Overwatch

Insider Shares Revelation Regarding Overwatch 2 PvE, Jeff Kaplan's Departure

A new video uploaded by Korean YouTuber , 김성회의 G식백과, and translated by Reddit user tcgtms has shed some light on Overwatch 2's development.
A new video uploaded by Korean YouTuber , 김성회의 G식백과, and translated by Reddit user tcgtms has shed some light on Overwatch 2's development. / Courtesy of Blizzard

A new video uploaded by Korean YouTuber , 김성회의 G식백과, and translated by Reddit user tcgtms has shed some light on Overwatch 2's development.

The 14-minute-long video goes into detail about quite a few of the goals and challenges faced by the Overwatch development team early on in its creation. The video goes over both the aims and thought processes behind the two Overwatch projects, as well as what could be the catalyst for franchise progenitor Jeff Kaplan's departure.

Insider Shares Revelation Regarding Overwatch 2 PvE and Jeff Kaplan

According to tcgtms' translation, Overwatch was never meant to be a live service game in the first place. Therefore, it was never built to handle the constant updates, balancing and rebalancing, and content additions of the genre. It was only after its success that the team — having used the limited character pool of TF2 as a model — switched gears to bring Overwatch in line with other PvP titans at the time.

This same vein applied to Overwatch 2 as the sequel was primarily meant to focus on PvE elements. For this reason, the team all but left Overwatch's PvP scene as-is to allocate resources.

"To Jeff Kaplan, it wasn’t necessarily abandoning the project, they just saw it as a non-live service game, therefore it was justifiable," tcgtms wrote, "Also, they believed that PvE should be the primary focus of OW2, so leaving OW1’s PvP as it was made sense for them."

Unfortunately, this landed them in "development hell" dealing with issues not unrelated to Activision Blizzard's documented toxic workplace, the public condemnation of allegedly misconduct-complacent CEO Bobby Kotick, and the novel coronavirus pandemic. Pressures from leadership to deliver the game has been attributed to the departure of Kaplan and others who "believed in the initial direction of OW and OW2 development with a classic Blizzard perfectionist approach."

With Kaplan gone and a new leader installed in the form of Epic Games' Walter Kong, Overwatch 2's PvE and PvP spheres were unlinked and players were able to receive a — albeit bare-bones and rushed — PvP Beta for the game.

It appears that the game's beloved creator may have been the sequel's largest roadblock.