Hoo boy. This isn’t going to go down well.
I’ve had access to a review build of Overwatch 2 since last week, and I’ve been poking around to see what’s new/hadn’t already been announced. Once I clicked on the Overwatch League tab in the shop, one thing immediately jumped out: higher prices for both team skins and the OWL Legendary skins.
If you’re interested in picking up the Happi Genji skin that was introduced for Summer Showdown, I recommend doing so sooner rather than later. While the skin will be available until November 15, it will cost more after the switch to Overwatch 2.
The skin currently costs 200 OWL tokens. That will increase to 300 OWL tokens in Overwatch 2, as will the other OWL Legendary skins. Team skins will be more expensive as well. They’re going up from 100 OWL tokens to 150 tokens each.
Meanwhile, alternate versions of the Legendary skins — ones remixed in the colors of OWL tournament winners — cost 200 tokens. I already own the base Luchador Reaper skin, so I’m not sure if the two variants are priced differently as a result.
That’s not the only thing. When I asked Blizzard about the price increases and the reasons behind it, a spokesperson said, “OWL prices are increasing to match our Shop pricing.” As such, it’ll cost you more to buy OWL tokens too. You’ll now need to pay $6 for 100 tokens, instead of $5.
So, if you want to buy a Legendary OWL skin in Overwatch 2 and you haven’t earned any tokens for free by watching OWL matches, you’ll need to pay $18. That’s an 80% increase from what the same skins cost in Overwatch. An OWL team skin will effectively cost $9 instead of $5 as well.
This stinks. I totally get that Overwatch 2 team needs to make money to fund the ongoing development of the game and I’ve long been an advocate of Overwatch going free-to-play. But nickel and dime-ing long-term fans by making the same skin more expensive after moving to Overwatch 2 is excessive, even if players can still get OWL tokens for free.
On top of that, Blizzard is no longer making seasonal event skins from Overwatch 1 available to buy with Credits (the currency you earned from loot boxes). You’ll soon need to fork over Overwatch Coins, the game’s others paid currency, for those. Legendary seasonal skins will run you 1,900 Coins — or $19. That’s roughly on par with premium skins in other free-to-play games, but as someone coming over from the original game where they could be unlocked for free, that seems like a lot.
(In the screenshot above, the gray symbol is for Credits and the gold one is for Coins. They have far too similar a design otherwise. Don’t confuse them!)
Although there’s a way to earn Coins for free, you won’t snag a whole lot just by playing, even if you complete every weekly challenge over the course of a season. You can earn up to 60 Coins per week, so 540 Coins are up for grabs each season. That’s not enough for a premium Battle Pass (which is 950 Coins). If you don’t buy anything from the shop, you can earn enough Coins for one premium Battle Pass roughly every two seasons.
If you have any leftover Credits from the original game, you’ll still be able to use those to unlock old cosmetics, as well as some of the initial Sojourn, Junker Queen and Kiriko cosmetics (the ones that don’t unlock through the Battle pass).
Oh, and it doesn’t seem that there’s any way to earn Credits in Overwatch 2. Once you run out, you’ll need to use Coins to unlock old cosmetics.
It’s going to be tougher for new Overwatch 2 players to earn the old cosmetics and have some of the many, many cool skins, emotes, sprays and other items that veteran players have. That’s a bummer, The shop prices seem a little steep across the board. While I can have my gripes with the extent of the new monetization model, it’s how things are going to be from now on, for better or worse.