You may have heard that Overwatch has a release date, and that an open beta will be hitting shortly beforehand. That open beta happens to launch the very same day as Battleborn, Gearbox’s take on the hero-based shooter.
More specifically, Battleborn launches May 3. The first wave of Overwatch open beta access will start the same day for those who preordered the game, with full open access starting May 5. While you might chalk this up as a coincidence resulting from the two games’ nearby release dates, it’s just as possible that this is Blizzard directly countering the launch of a very similar type of game.
Randy Pitchford, Gearbox’s CEO, took to Twitter shortly after the announcement.
Well - shit just got real.— Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) March 7, 2016
He soon clarified that yes, he was indeed talking about the overlap between the beta and Battleborn’s launch, and that he was ”excited they believe as we do there is a business. Competition is real!”
Competition is real indeed, Randy. It’s honestly kind of surprising not just that it took this long for a major developer to make their own mark on the Team Fortress formula, but that two teams are tackling it so close to one another. Anecdotally, I feel like there’s way more excitement out there for Overwatch, but hopefully the close competition will drive both games to be better.