Blizzard is changing the speed at which it releases new maps and heroes to Overwatch’s Competitive Play mode.
The developer kept new Overwatch hero Brigitte out of the Competitive Play mode for the entirety of last season. But for season 10, a new Overwatch map will be added mid-season. Blizzard added Overwatch map Rialto to the competitive map pool on May 22 with the launch of the Overwatch Anniversary 2018 event. Overwatch developer Scott Mercer confirmed that this schedule will continue for future maps and heroes.
“With [the May 22] patch, we made Rialto available in Competitive Play instead of waiting until the next competitive season on July 1,” Mercer said on the Overwatch forum. “In the future, our plan is to make new heroes and maps available in Competitive Play two weeks after their initial release.”
The theory behind keeping new releases out of Competitive Play was to give each season “a stronger identity,” Mercer originally said during season nine. Fans were unhappy with the delayed launch time between her Overwatch release and her entrance into Competitive Play. Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan noted in April that Blizzard was considering an adjustment to that rule.
No new Overwatch maps or heroes are currently announced, but it’s likely not long before Blizzard starts dropping some clues. But will we get a new hero during season 10? We’ll just have to wait and see on that one.