Overwatch annual event list 2021

Here's a "forecast" of likely start dates for the game's biggest events.

Image via Blizzard Entertainment

For many Overwatch fans, the game’s annual events are always something to look forward to. Each major event includes new skins to unlock and game modes to enjoy with friends. 

Most players know the vague launch times for these recurring events, but we’ve put together a “forecast” of possible 2021 start dates for Overwatch’s annual festivities. These dates are tentative and are based on previous event releases. 

This event list also doesn’t include challenge events, like Hanzo’s Kanezaka Challenge, which run for shorter amounts of time and appear at the discretion of developers and designers. 

Lunar New Year  

This year, the Lunar New Year event took place between Feb. 4 and Feb. 25 and included weekly challenges.

Overwatch Archives 

The Archives event, which always includes a new lore-based arcade mode, began on March 12 in 2020. In 2019, the event started a bit later, on April 16. More importantly, the event released with no leaks or social media teasers in 2020, meaning 2021 could have the same level of surprise. 

The 2021 Overwatch Archives event began on April 6 and ran through April 27, as anticipated. While the event did not include any new PVE content, new challenges and a new format for earning skins spiced up the month.


While Overwatch’s true anniversary is May 24, the Anniversary event always happens a little earlier due to developer schedules. The event dropped on May 19 in 2020 and May 21 in 2019.

Overwatch‘s fifth anniversary celebration began on May 18 in 2021, following the usual mid-May launch dates.

Summer Games 

This Olympics-themed event launched on Aug. 4 in 2020 but started earlier in 2019, on July 16. The start date for the Summer Games event seems to depend on the challenge events that are scheduled around it.

We predicted that late July or early August would be the ideal launch time for the 2021 Summer Games event, which eventually came around on July 20.

Halloween Terror 

Of all the annual Overwatch events, these spooky festivities tend to be the most punctual. Halloween Terror started on Oct. 13 in 2020 and Oct. 15 in 2019. The event always includes Halloween itself, so it has to start in the middle of October to give fans enough time to defeat Dr. Junkenstein. 

Halloween Terror kicked off on Oct. 12 and ran through Nov. 2 in 2021.

Winter Wonderland 

This event celebrates all of the season’s lively holidays and normally launches in mid-December. Winter Wonderland began on Dec. 15 in 2020 and started on Dec. 10 in 2019. The event normally lasts until the new year begins and includes game modes like Yeti Hunt and Mei’s Snowball Offensive. A lot may change in the world by December 2021, but the event should launch somewhere around Dec. 14.