Blizzard has revealed that seasonal map pools will be implemented in Overwatch 2 in order to keep content fresh and to also allow for more regular updates to existing maps.
If you’ve been wondering where the heck the likes of Rialto have wandered off to since Overwatch 2 launched, then now you’ve got the answer. Blizzard explains in a blog post that seasonal map rotations are here to stay in Overwatch 2, and Rialto will be swapped back into the map pool for Season 2 with a few tweaks. Despite not being billed as a main innovation for Overwatch 2 before release, map pools and rotations will be an interesting shakeup for players to get used to.
“We want each season in Overwatch 2 to feel refreshing and exciting for new and returning players,” Blizzard says. “To support that goal and also to allow our team, when we think it’s appropriate, to make adjustments to our maps, we have begun to run a map pool featuring all-new locations and many original maps.”
These map pools will only apply in Quick and Competitive queues – the entire roster of Overwatch 2 maps will still be accessible via custom games or “the occasional arcade mode”, Blizzard says.
You can check out the map pool for Overwatch 2 Season 1 right here.
On the Rialto situation specifically, Blizzard also teases what it’s been working on with the map.
“When Rialto returns in Season Two, players will notice a few spots where we have added additional cover which should help the map play better in the 5v5 environment with reduced shields.”
Overwatch 2 is not the only popular FPS game to introduce some form of map rotation. Apex Legends has had regular casual and ranked map rotations for a while now, and earlier this year Valorant started to rotate maps out to keep a steady seven-map pool.