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Overwatch fans across the globe celebrated when Nintendo revealed the game’s long-awaited arrival on the Switch. But with the news came one burning question: Will Switch owners be able to play Overwatch with their friends from other consoles?
The crossplay matchmaking system is a feature many developers have been working to add to their games over the years. PUBG most recently combined its Xbox and PlayStation servers to allow for quicker matchmaking times, while Fortnite and Rocket League have long since boasted the feature across their multiple platforms—including the Nintendo Switch.
Since Overwatch was released in 2016, the first-person shooter has been available on Xbox, PlayStation, and PC, but players have been confined to their platform’s servers. In 2018, Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan revealed that Blizzard was “in discussion” with Sony and Microsoft to merge the servers. But over eight months later, the matchmaking system is still unavailable.
With Overwatch’s upcoming launch on the Switch, little has changed in terms of Blizzard’s stance on crossplay.
Blizzard is “keeping an eye on how cross-play systems and technology develop,” according to a statement sent to Engadget. So, while cross-platform play won’t be available with the launch of the game on the Nintendo Switch, the Overwatch developer is keeping the door open for the matchmaking system to be added in the future.
“We’ve seen how compelling cross-system play can be for our community, and we’re excited about the potential,” Blizzard wrote in its statement. “There’s still a lot of work to do on both our side and the platforms’ side to determine whether this is something that makes sense for Overwatch.”
Until then, fans of the game will be able to purchase Overwatch on the Switch for $39.99 in either a physical or digital format beginning Oct. 15. Those who pre-order the game will be able to unlock an exclusive Widowmaker skin and will get three months of Nintendo’s online service for free.