Blizzard Entertainment has decided to push back the second phase of their Overwatch closed beta test to February. The reason why they are pushing back the beta is because they need a little more time to work on some of the promised features (like a way to progress as you play the game) before they bring the beta back online.
In a blog post on the official battle.net forums, game director Jeff Kaplan updates the community on what's going on behind the scene:
While progress has been great and the team has been working super hard to get everything implemented on time, we're not quite ready to bring the Closed Beta back online just yet. We’ve been pretty open about the fact that we could slip into February from the beginning, but a big reason for this delay is that we really wanted to add one more big feature to the next beta patch.
Kaplan also states that they are working on a new game mode as per the community's requests, with new maps being made for use in this as of now unknown new mode. This new mode, as well as the new maps that are supposed to go with it, is planned to be released when the beta comes back online.
Even though there is no exact release date yet, Kaplan says that they are shooting for a mid-February release, with players getting a one week notice before the beta comes back online.
Overwatch is Blizzard's first new IP in over 10 years and sees players take to the streets in a variety of different places in the world while they try to win objective-based matches against other teams. The game has been announced for Microsoft Windows, Playstation 4 and Xbox One and is scheduled to be released in Q1 of this year. Our very own Stuart Burns played a ton of it during the first Beta weekend. You can read his first impression here.
Blizzard has always been good at not releasing their games until they think it's done, and I'm glad they are taking the same approach with the closed beta for Overwatch. The game has loads of potential and their willingness to work with and listen to their community will go a long way to make sure that both the developer and the player base will get something they'll want to play.