Overwatch 2 phone number requirement axed by Blizzard amid rocky launch

Blizzard’s launch of Overwatch 2 on Tuesday didn’t go as deliberate. Many gamers who tried to play the revamped Overwatch skilled lengthy queue occasions, had been subjected to server errors, had been disconnected from video games, and had progress and objects not carry over from the unique sport — that’s, if they may connect with Blizzard’s sport servers in any respect. On Wednesday night, Blizzard apologized for the state of Overwatch 2’s launch and introduced a serious coverage change: It will now not require a phone number to be connected to a Battle.web account for “a majority of existing Overwatch players.”

“We have made the decision to remove phone number requirements for a majority of existing Overwatch players,” the Overwatch workforce stated in a put up on Blizzard’s boards. (*2*)

Blizzard stated it plans to vary the phone number requirement for Overwatch 2 for present gamers by Friday.

Despite lifting the phone number requirement for a lot of its participant base, an initiative it referred to as SMS Protect, the developer “remain[s] committed to combating disruptive behavior in Overwatch 2” and famous that “accounts that were not connected to Battle.net as well as new accounts will still have to meet SMS Protect requirements, which helps to ensure we’re protecting our community against cheating. If a player is caught engaging in disruptive behavior, their account may be banned whether they have a new account or not.”

Blizzard’s resolution to require a phone number for Overwatch 2 — and additional restrictions about which sorts of phone numbers would meet its necessities — was a controversial one. Some gamers who had pre-paid cell phone plans discovered themselves locked out from taking part in Overwatch 2, which means some clients who bought the unique Overwatch, which was changed by its sequel wholesale, may now not play their copy of the sport. That concern was exacerbated by the timing of Blizzard’s announcement of the coverage: one week earlier than Overwatch 2 launched, and effectively after the developer began taking pre-orders for add-ons for the sport.

As for the standing of Overwatch 2’s on-line play, Blizzard stated it’s nonetheless working to enhance stability for the sport’s on-line service.

“Today we’ve patched a server that is critical to the login experience, and this change has increased login reliability,” the Overwatch workforce stated. “Beyond queues, we’re in progress with another server update that will reduce the occurrences of players being disconnected once they’re already in game.”

Blizzard stated it has “made changes to simplify the queuing process,” and expects gamers to see extra streamlined queue occasions, and is working to deal with gamers being dropped from queues.

In Wednesday night’s replace, Blizzard additionally addressed issues with account merging and lacking participant objects, and incorrectly locked heroes, all of which it stated is being investigated and labored on. Blizzard once more famous that Overwatch 2’s launch points “were exacerbated by DDoS attacks,” which have apparently abated since Tuesday.

Blizzard stated updates might be posted on the official Overwatch Twitter account (and presumably its boards) as they arrive in.

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