Overwatch’s new Deathmatch map, Kanezaka, is live

Meet us in the cat café if you’re ready for a fight.

Image via Blizzard Entertainment

It’s time to throw down in Overwatch’s latest free-for-all map, Kanezaka.

The quaint city, located in the shadows of Hanamura and Shimada Castle, provides a picturesque layout for players to duke it out in Deathmatch mode or in custom games. Kanezaka has been in testing mode on the Public Test Realm (PTR) for nearly a month, but it’s now available to play on the live Overwatch servers.  

As a free-for-all map, Kanezaka has no specific objectives or payload options the way a traditional Overwatch map would. Instead, the map acts as an open world with plenty of places for players to sneak up on enemies and rack up kills.  

Kanezaka is a historic city that’s experiencing a crisis thanks to the presence of the Hashimoto, according to a piece of lore revealed yesterday. The town used to be run by the Shimada Clan, the criminal organization that Hanzo once led after his father’s death. Since Hanzo and Genji abandoned the clan, the stricter hand of the Hashimoto gang has ruled over Kanezaka. 

While the city’s residents are cracking under Hashimoto rule, Kanezaka remains a popular tourist destination. Players can explore the many attractions of Kanezaka while they run around the map, including a sleek new shopping mall standing tall next to ancient buildings. The former stomping grounds of the Shimada clan, like an arcade and a seedy nightclub, are also part of the map. 

The biggest draw of Kanezaka to fans, however, has been the city’s cat café. No cats are present and none can be harmed during a tense Overwatch free-for-all, but the tiny café includes pictures of the developers’ pets on the walls. 

Players can now play Kanezaka as a special Deathmatch mode in the Arcade card. The map can also be explored in custom games.