Play of the Fortnight: Overwatch Summer Games 2018 Coming Soon

We’ve been waiting for it, and now Blizzard has confirmed the start date of the Overwatch Summer Games 2018. In this Play of the Fortnight, we’ll briefly go over what we can expect from the upcoming event. What are the event dates, and what skins can we expect? And what about everyone’s favorite Lucioball?


When does the Overwatch Summer Games 2018 start?

Overwatch Summer Games 2018 - Coming Soon

The official Overwatch Twitter account confirmed the event will be coming on Thursday, August 9th. This is actually pretty surprising, as most Overwatch events have gone live on patch day. This is usually on a Tuesday. It seems Blizzard may be moving away from that now.

The Overwatch Summer Games will run for a total of three weeks, as usual. This will have it running from August 9th to August 30th.


The Return of Lucioball

Overwatch Summer Games 2018 - Lucio Ball

Lucioball is a core part of the Overwatch Summer Games events, now. Blizzard has confirmed it’ll be making its return, and it seems we’ll even get a new map. This year, it looks like players will be travelling to Busan, South Korea for the game mode. We can see this from the official Overwatch Korea Twitter account, where they put out a tweet that translates to, “Lucioball is coming to Busan Stadium this year!” We can also see it in the teaser video they tweeted.

Copa Lucioball will likely make its return as well. This will give players a chance to be competitive in a fun, short-lived event. Last year it gave us a chance to unlock some additional achievements and event sprays as well. Hopefully this year we have some new achievements to work towards.


Something for Korean Players to Look Forward To?

In a developer update in May directed to the Korean community, Jeff Kaplan had a message for Korean players. Part of this told us that Korean players would have something to look forward to. Kaplan said, “There’s some surprises coming for Korea specifically this summer that I’m really excited about.” It would seem like a bit of a cop-out for this surprise to be the Busan map for Lucioball, as it’s effectively just a reskin of an existing map.

Could we see the Busan map become a fully fledged map outside the event? Or is the surprise something else? Perhaps we’ll see D.Va get some more fleshed out lore, which is currently quite lacking apart from the fact that she’s an esports star. It’d be really great to see a D.Va short or comic, perhaps a new skin as she hasn’t had one in the last few events, and a new map.


What Summer Games Skins Can We Expect to See?

Overwatch Summer Games 2018 - D.Va

As mentioned above, D.Va has not had any skins for a few events. This is not unique to her, as many tanks have been sorely lacking in the new skins department lately. D.Va and Reinhardt haven’t seen any Epic or Legendary skins for the last few events, and Orisa, Roadhog and Winston have only seen one each. Support isn’t faring much better. Moira and Zenyatta have only had one skin each in the last few events. Compare this to the Damage role, where heroes like McCree have had seven in the last few events, and there’s definitely a discrepancy.

It’d be great to see some summery skins for heroes that haven’t had a lot of love in a while. Wouldn’t it be fun to have a lifeguard skin for some of the heroes? Mercy is the obvious choice, but there are plenty of directions this one could go. It’d also be great to see some of the heroes just kicking back in beach or pool wear, like Widowmaker in her previous Summer Games skin.

Just, please Blizzard, don’t make a Hammond soccer ball skin. Please. He’s ridiculous enough as it is.


Other Things to Look Forward to in the Event

We’ll certainly be seeing the return of old event content at a reduced price. This is normal for Overwatch events, but even so it’s worth looking forward to. The event items will all be in loot boxes, but the skins can be purchased for a reduced price. The 3,000 credit price is a bit steep, so all the skins we missed from last year and the year before will be much cheaper now.

It’d be interesting to see if any further tweaks are made to Lucioball. Last year, there were a few minor adjustments to improve playability. Whether Blizzard chooses to continue making tweaks beyond the new map remains to be seen.


The Future of Overwatch Summer Games

While it’s nice to get to play beloved game modes again, there’s only so long Blizzard can put out the same content without players getting a bit bored. It’s normal for events to be repeated, but Lucioball has only limited room for improvements and changes with such a small and simple map.

Overwatch Summer Games 2018 - Volleyball Pharah

Could we expect to see other game modes coming to Summer Games in the future? For example, what about a volleyball game mode? In Team Fortress 2, there was a special modded game mode where players could play the Pyro and use the airburst of their flamethrowers to bounce a ball back and forth over a net. There were increasingly complex maps as well, with multiple levels. Could we see a modified Pharah rocket for the same type of game mode?


Closing Thoughts

Whether you’re excited for Lucioball’s return or simply looking forward to picking up some new and old event skins, the Overwatch Summer Games 2018 event is one to watch. It’s been a favorite since it was first released in 2016, and last year’s skins showed a massive quality spike. We had some excellent additions like Grillmaster Soldier-76, and the beautiful Cote d’Azur Widowmaker. Let’s hope this year is even better.

What are you most looking forward to in the upcoming event? Let us know in the comments below, and make sure you prepare yourself! The event starts next week, so now is a great time to save up some credits to get the skins you missed.

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