Overwatch Anniversary 2017 has begun as an official event in celebration of the team-based shooter's May 24 release date in 2016. The event, like those previous, features a new Anniversary Loot Box filled with new custom content like skins, emotes, sprays, and voice lines. Three new Arena maps are included with the event, perhaps to make up for the lack of a new themed Brawl. The game's Anniversary 2017 event lasts from May 23 through June 12, so log in and start earning loot boxes today.
Curiously, Overwatch's three new Anniversary maps are not set in new world regions like previous maps have been. Instead, they're continuations of existing Overwatch maps. Necropolis is an Egyptian-themed map much like the Temple of Anubis. Castillo is an old fort that overlooks Dorado's bay. And third, Black Forest is located on the outskirts of Eichenwald. Perhaps Blizzard decided it would be simpler to build off of existing assets, or maybe these areas of the world simply have that much more story to tell.
While there isn't a thematic game mode to accompany the Anniversary event like Insurrection or Halloween's Junkenstein's Revenge, there is a new Arcade Mode to try out. The 3v3 Lockout Elimination Arcade Mode is similar to past 3v3 modes, but with a twist. In each round players only have one life with no respawns. The last team standing wins the round. However, after a victory, those winning heroes are locked out and cannot be chosen again. Players will have to win three rounds total, each round with different heroes.
And, of course, what would an Overwatch event be without new skins? Blizzard's trying something a bit different with Anniversary by only featuring Legendary quality skins. That's right, there's no Rare or Epic to unlock this event. To make up for that, however, there's 11 Legendary skins available. That's 33,000 coins total if purchased with in-game currency. If a Legendary drops once every 10 loot boxes, that's 110 Loot Boxes. It might be best to focus in on just one or two must-have skins for the Overwatch Anniversary event.
In addition to the skins, there's the usual smorgasbord of other unique content. Of special note are Dance Emotes for every single character, each of Epic quality. Bastion's Robo Boogie and Tracer's Charleston are especially cute. 25 Sprays are part of the event, featuring playing cards with unique character motifs. 25 golden Player Icons are alternate takes on each character's standard graffiti sprays/icons. And, finally, there are 24 new Voice Lines to acquire, too. No Victory Poses or Highlight intros this time around.
That's all of the contained content in the Overwatch Anniversary 2017 event. The Legendary skins and new dance emotes are all of outstanding quality, but it does feels a bit like Blizzard's taking a more relaxed approach to Anniversary compared to other events. There's no denying they've earned it, though. Blizzard's got to be very proud of Overwatch's first year. Bring on year two.
Overwatch is currently available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.