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Was Overwatch Actually Better When It Had Lootboxes?

In the years since its 2016 release, "Overwatch" and its system of loot boxes inspired plenty of other games to follow suit. Some games, such as 2017's "Star Wars: Battlefront 2" immediately regretted the controversial feature as gamers made their feelings known on loot boxes and their alleged predatory nature. Even concerned parents were up in arms and, in some cases, threatening Blizzard with legal action over the "exploitative" nature of randomized loot.

Before the release of "Overwatch 2," Blizzard decided that loot boxes would be disappearing in favor of a new battle pass system — much like the ones players have seen in "Fortnite," "Fall Guys," and plenty of other multiplayer games. The "Overwatch 2'" battle pass removed the randomized "gambling" nature of loot boxes by clearly communicating what players could unlock and when. However, now that "Overwatch 2" is in the hands of players, some think that, despite the controversies, loot boxes were better than the new battle pass.

The grind is real

In the first "Overwatch," players could earn a single box each time they leveled up. Once opened, players earned four randomized skins, voice lines, sprays, emotes, highlight intros, victory poses, or even piles of in-game currency. With enough credits, players could feasibly purchase any of the aforementioned items if they weren't lucky enough to acquire them. Even though loot boxes were randomized, players could earn legendary skins and other items without spending additional money.

The battle pass in "Overwatch 2" is another story. As pointed out and calculated on the "Overwatch" subreddit, it would take frugal players five years or 15,600 coins to buy all of the items currently available for the newest character Kiriko. If one doesn't want to purchase in-game credits, the only way to earn them is by completing weekly challenges in the game. Each week, the maximum number of credits one can earn is 60. Legendary skins in the game cost 1900 credits, so even acquiring one skin would take over 31 weeks.

The subreddit has plenty of fans expressing their displeasure by saying that loot boxes were better than the current system. According to user Glad_Direction_4099, "Now you have to grind for pennies of gold to buy [one] skin. Worst BattlePass EVER." Only time will tell if Blizzard decides to change how cosmetics and credits can be earned in "Overwatch 2," but for now, players eyeing a specific legendary skin will have to keep their noses to the grindstone.