If I hadn’t randomly earned McCree’s America skin during this Summer Games event in Overwatch, I would have been pretty bummed. Yet, there it is, all shiny, new and hilariously Red, White & Blue. I got it in a loot box, and that’s the only way I would have earned it.
Unlike other items in Overwatch that can be purchased with in-game credits scored through loot boxes and duplicate drops, the Summer Games goods cannot be purchased. They must come randomly from loot boxes, and it’s likely that most players will not get all of the content.
Okay, why? Blizzard’s Jeff Kaplan explained that decision in the most recent developer update video. It comes down to rarity. Here’s the full clip, though I’ve transcribed the bits relating to getting items below.
“We want these items to feel extra special and very rare. So, we don’t want everybody running around all the time in every single Summer Games item, and we actually don’t expect that all players will get all Summer Games items. We want this to be a thing where six months from now, when the Summer Games has long passed, that you look back on somebody who’s in that cool, you know, Summer Games Zarya skin and go, “oh man, I can’t wait until next year when the Summer Games happens. Maybe I’ll be lucky enough to get that skin…
…Our normal loot box items, eventually you can get all of them through playing, buying loot boxes in the store or unlocking them through credits, whereas we wanted the seasonal loot boxes to feel more rare and special and the items within them to feel more rare and special. So, for that reason, they’ll only be available for those few weeks, and you won’t be able to buy those items for credits, either.”
Yeah, I get it. Increasing rarity is a good thing for cosmetics. It’s frustrating for folks who really, really want specific skins and risk not being able to get them, but I’d rather enjoy the rarity of them than see them everywhere.
The Summer Games event runs until August 22 at 11:59pm PT. Earn those loot boxes while you can, friends.