Throughout the year, Overwatch has several events that take place for certain holidays and other special occasions. The upcoming event, Winter Wonderland, is said to begin towards the start of December, and allow for players to play special game modes, and purchase event-only skins, along with other cosmetics.
During last year’s Winter Wonderland, Overwatch introduced the new, “Yeti Hunter”, game mode which placed a team of Meis against an advanced Winston, and brought back, “Mei’s Snowball Offensive”, although somewhat controversial.
The event usually lasts for about three weeks, and players suspect this year it will start on December 13th, as Overwatch tends to start special events on Thursdays. Players also suspect that this year could potentially bring changes to the Mei game mode, or even new game modes altogether.
When it comes to skins, players hope for a new nutcracker-inspire skin, as weeks earlier players found a potential skin leak possibly giving hints to the new skins this winter-themed event will bring. Another popular fan theory is that one of the newest Overwatch characters, Ashe, who was introduced in the beginning of December at BlizzCon, will finally be given a skin, due to high demand from players.
Although the Winter Wonderland event takes place during Holidays such as Christmas, and Hanukkah, Overwatch refuses to introduce any sort of strictly holiday-based content into their game, as they hope to avoid controversy. In past years, players recall the game having “festive” skins, and many prefer these to the new approach Overwatch is taking to introducing skins during this special event. Rather than implementing holiday-based skins, Overwatch is focusing on introducing more winter-inspired skins, and even skins not influenced by winter at all.
Even though Overwatch’s main purpose of changing the category of skins they put out was made to avoid conflict and controversy, it has actually ended up doing the opposite, as players on forums vent about the “boring” skins Overwatch puts out, and instead wish that they could release a new skin for each holiday celebrated around December so everyone could be included.
This year, players are hoping for a more holiday-based Winter Wonderland all around and not just skins. Last year’s event didn’t gather a very positive reaction from players, as they felt it was too “winter-based”, and didn’t make players feel the giddiness they usually do around holidays. Players recall enjoying last year’s Winter Wonderland when it was first released, but became bored of it a few days later, as it didn’t have the “holiday charm” they had been yearning for.
Overwatch’s decision to make the Winter Wonderland holiday-based, or winter-based could have a huge effect on the players. On one hand, Overwatch avoids any religious conflict by making their event a holiday-free zone, and not making any players feel left out by releasing more content for one holiday over another. On the other hand, many players feel that Overwatch needs to step out of their comfort zone, and add in an equal amount of content for everyone, while still making it holiday-based, in order to fill the void they felt last year from a lack of holiday-based content.
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