Overwatch Summer Games event: New arena and skins revealed

Blizzard’s Overwatch has been a phenomenal success since its release in May of 2016, and a big part of that is the regular updates and events that keep players coming back to try out the colorful shooter. There’s been something new added to the game basically every month since its release, and today is the first time we’re seeing a repeat of a previous event with the return of the Summer Games, Overwatch’s equivalent of the Olympics. Last year’s Summer Games took place during the same period the Olympics were happening in Brazil.

The event’s return was confirmed last week in a video by the game’s director, Jeff Kaplan. The first Summer Games event was surrounded by some controversy, since at that time players weren’t able to purchase the event’s skins and other cosmetic items using in-game currency. Every event since then has allowed players to do so, though these items can only be purchased during the three week period when the event is active and usually cost three times as much as basic cosmetics.

As a sort of apology to players who missed out on Summer Games cosmetics the first time around, all of last year’s event skins will be available for purchase during this year’s event at the standard rate of 250 credits for an epic skin, or 1000 credits for a legendary.

New loot box system and Lucioball returns

This will also be the first event to use the revamped loot box system, which should mean it’ll be easier to obtain skins and other cosmetic items both new and old.

The special mode Lúcioball also makes a return with some new rules. During last year’s event, teams of three Lúcios played a simplified version of Rocket League in a Brazil-themed arena. Players could knock one another out of the way using their secondary fire and pull the ball towards them using their ultimate ability. This year, players can’t affect one another directly, and his ultimate will now increase Lúcio’s speed, jump height, and rate of fire on his secondary knockback ability. In addition, players who want to play Lúcioball competitively can do so during the event. This year’s Summer Games brings back the Brazil arena and also adds an Australian venue, a tribute to the 2000 Summer Olympics held in Sydney.

The event has 150 cosmetic items for players to collect, including medal victory poses, new highlights for Hanzo and Pharah, and a new emote for Ana. New event skins include Mercy dressed as Nike, the spirit of winged victory. Other sports related skins include Scuba diving Sombra, BMX Reaper, and Lacrosse Junkrat. Several characters also received non-sports related skins, including a bikini-clad Widowmaker, beach bum McCree, and barbeque master Soldier:76. The event begins today and will run until August 28.