'Overwatch' To Celebrate One-Year Anniversary, Host Free 'Weekend' May 26-29

It's hard to believe Overwatch isn't even a year old. Blizzard announced earlier this month that the hero-centric, team-based shooter is a $1 billion franchise, it has more than 30 million players, and it regularly crosses over into the publisher's other games. Yet it's true--Overwatch won't get to celebrate the anniversary of its debut until later this month.

A celebration it shall be. Blizzard announced today that a Game of the Year Edition of the game will debut PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on May 23. The new release will replace the Origins Edition of the game, which featured five exclusive skins and some in-game extras. The Game of the Year Edition will include new skins, the same extras found in the Origins Edition, and 10 loot boxes you'll be able to ransack as soon as the game debuts. Blizzard didn't announce the Game of the Year Edition's price; the Origins Edition costs $60, while the base came currently costs $40.

The Game of the Year Edition will be part of an Overwatch Anniversary event kicking off on May 23 and ending June 12. Blizzard didn't offer much info about the event, but it did tease the rather long extravaganza on YouTube:

The company also said that Overwatch will get a free weekend from May 26-29. (What's with all these game publishers calling four-day events "weekends" lately?) The free weekend is available on all three platforms--PC, PS4, and Xbox One--and runs from 11am PT on May 26 to 11:59pm PT on May 29. Progress made in that time will transfer if you decide to purchase the game, so don't worry about sinking in a couple (dozen) hours only to have all your goodies ripped away. Note, too, that the game requires active PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live Gold memberships for PS4 and Xbox One.

Blizzard said it will reveal more information about the Overwatch Anniversary event as it approaches.

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TypeOnline, FPS
PlatformsPC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Where To BuyBattle.netPlayStation StoreXbox StoreAmazonGameStopBest BuyWalmart
Release DateMay 24, 2016
Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.

  • dstarr3
    A year later, I still haven't played Overwatch, and a year later, I still don't feel like I'm missing out on anything.
  • KD_Gaming
    If you lived in a cave and never did anything you wouldn't feel like your missing our either. Ignorance is bliss.
    Not to say overwatch is a something one needs to play but the statement still applies.
  • dstarr3
    Ehh, I've watched it, and I've heard people talk about it. And I haven't heard or seen much anything of interest.
  • ralphfaith
    I would suggest people to at least give it a try. If you're still not willing to buy it, just go its official website, checkout a bit in the heroes section and I'm pretty sure that you'll be attracted and will give it a try. This is how I was introduced to this game, thanks to my friend.
  • KirbyKirby
    Can't speak for other free weekends, but May 29th is Memorial Day, so for most Americans it's a long weekend.
  • problematiq
    I enjoyed playing Overwatch, but really me and my friends only played fore a week then jumped to Paladins. Yes paladins is a rip off of Overwatch, but it's a fun free one.
  • JakeWearingKhakis
    If you don't like Overwatch or feel like it doesn't have as much strategy as you want, then come join me in Paragon. The creators of the Unreal Engine have an amazing MOBA that has been in open beta since the 2nd half of last year.


    My in game name is Wrekonize323, add me and I'll help you learn stuff if you need me to.
  • nxs
    Overwatch is the best FPS release since TF2. While not an arena shooter which will have a special place in my heart and 1999, it is the culmination of what younger generations want and older generations need; playable at over 100ms latency and requiring individual skill and teamwork that the poor COD/BF franchises have neglected by catering to the lowest common denominator you once again have the ability to put scrubs in thier place: at your feet.
  • markbrownn
    Overwatch is good but cannot be considered to be the best. COD (almost all the versions), Destiny (1 and 2), Battlefield, etc are giving some great competition to Overwatch. In one year, they have a lot of audience but the expenditure on game needs more players.
  • MasterChief86
    I started playing this thing only weeks ago, even though i bought it last year. I'm loving this thing so far. a bit wacky maybe, but a fun-to-play title nonetheless.