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It looks like Overwatch was accidentally given away for free on PC

(Image credit: Activision)

Update: Overwatch League VP Jon Spector has confirmed that the league is coordinating an Overwatch PC code and OWL token giveaway across all of its teams, so it seems Boston Uprising just got a little ahead of itself. Spector says the teams are "going live with their promotions soon," so stay tuned.

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For just a few hours on Wednesday, the Overwatch League was giving away copies of Overwatch on PC on the Boston Uprising website, but it looks like someone involved might have jumped the gun. 

The giveaway originally said that you had to submit your request for code by January 15, 2021, but it was taken down the same day it went live. As our buds at PC Gamer found, the page soon informed those looking to score a free copy of Overwatch that "This form has been deactivated and is closed to any further submissions," but at the time of this writing it reads, "Due to high demand, this form is closed. All eligible entries will receive codes within 72 hours."

The change in verbiage actually makes the whole situation even more conspicuous. Surely, the folks in charge were fully aware that offering free copies of Overwatch to anyone over 13 in the US would elicit "high demand," especially since the offer was good until January. If they'd allotted enough supply for a months-long giveaway, it seems doubtful that their entire stock was zapped up in a few hours.

As you can see from Wario64's Twitter screengrab, the banner image for the giveaway showed Overwatch heroes donning their Overwatch League (OWL) skins, which suggests the giveaway was meant to promote the league. It's possible the giveaway went live in anticipation of the Grand Finals Weekend, but then why tie it to Boston Uprising, which didn't make it past the second round of playoffs? With no official word from Blizzard, the Overwatch League, or Boston Uprising to indicate what the giveaway was all about and why it was scrapped so quickly, we can only speculate.

There could be some sort of free event coming up, or maybe it has something to do with Overwatch 2 (though it's unlikely), but regardless, it's weird that a major publisher like Blizzard would let such an accessible giveaway of one of its biggest games leak like this. We'll be waiting on word from Blizzard and will update this article should we get an answer.

Didn't manage to get a free copy of Overwatch in time? No fear - here are some games like Overwatch to fill the void.

Jordan Gerblick

As GamesRadar's Arizona-based Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish. Probably drinking green tea.