It's no surprise to hear Diablo 4 isn't releasing this year - we've suspected for a while that it's still a long ways off. But it is a little surprising to hear Activision completely rule out Overwatch 2 for 2021, especially since there was once speculation that it would release in 2020. Regardless, the company said in pretty clear terms today that that's the case.
"We expect Blizzard's net bookings to grow, given the momentum in World of Warcraft and the other growth initiatives we have in the business," Activision CFO Dennis Durkin said during Activision's quarterly earnings call. "Our outlook does not include Diablo 4 or Overwatch 2 launching in 2021."
Blizzard's decision to develop Overwatch 2 as a sort-of hybrid sequel might've created expectations that it wouldn't take as long to launch as a full, standalone game. But while Overwatch 2 shares its main PvP mode with the original game, there are features exclusive to the sequel, like the new story-focused PvE mode, which we found to be a welcome addition to the game in our hands-on preview.
Director Jeff Kaplan told GamesRadar last year that the PvE mode will include a "complete story experience with a full set of story missions pushing the narrative of Overwatch forward through gameplay for the first time.
"We're also working on a highly replayable cooperative feature we call Hero Missions that will be powered by a progression system that will allow each hero to level up and gain new powers," Kaplan said.
It's been some time since we've heard anything about Overwatch 2, but Blizzard President J. Allen Brack said on the call that the developers are making plenty of headway.
"We've successfully passed a major internal milestone in December, and that involved testing many key features of the game with 100s of developers across Blizzard, and so we're happy with how that game is progressing," Brack said.
We still haven't seen a playable build of Diablo 4, but Blizzard's quarterly updates are super helpful if you want an idea of how the game's progressing. The latest offered a deep-dive into Diablo 4's loot system.
Here are some new games coming in 2021.