Among the heaps of new content coming soon Overwatch 2 are major changes to the map. The game’s entire engine has been reworked, and obviously, that means things should look a little better. But the developers and artists at Blizzard took it a step further and created a system called Environment States that would sometimes impose different weather conditions on the map.
This feature was previously shown in one of the Overwatch 2 thread but was more detailed in a news post on the game website.
The post, written by two members of the Overwatch team, software engineer Marco and light artist Fabien, details how Environment Nations works and how it will affect the game. . According to Fabien, Environmental States are designed to support “the story the map is telling”.
“With this new system,” says Fabien, “we have managed to separate all the key components of lighting, sound, and effects into independent content that can be combined as building blocks for create what we call the Environmental Scenario”.
Environmental scenarios are not something that is too complicated from the outside. From the player’s perspective, they are simply the weather and time of day on the map. An example given in the post shows the Necropolis map with its night scenario. With the new Environment Country system, however, the Overwatch team can simply take the Environment Scenario of another map, in this case the sunny Temple of Anubis, and apply it to the Necropolis to give the map a completely new look.
However, this new system allows the Overwatch team to do more than just change the time of day on a given map. Using it, they can also dynamically add weather changes to the map. In Overwatch 2, players can expect maps set in the desert blurred by sandstorms or snow maps covered in unexpected blizzards.
While we still don’t know when Overwatch 2 will release, you can still check out everything else we know about the game.