The Overwatch Archives event has been a fan favourite for some time, thanks largely to its unique PvE missions which delve into "pivotal moments" from the past and featuring the game's ragtag group of heroes and villains. With development on Overwatch 2 still some way from completion, it's up to seasonal events like Archives to keep players happy throughout the next year. With that in mind, here's everything you can expect to see with the Overwatch 2022 Archives event.
What Is the Overwatch Archives Event?
The Overwatch Archives event was originally released in 2017, although it was initially called 'Uprising'. Unlike other seasonal events in Overwatch, which lean into holidays like Halloween and Chinese New Year, the Archives event did its best to dive deeper into the game's backstory and lore, through both new skins and PvE story missions.
The event was an immediate hit, but in recent years fans have definitely grown tired of it. This seems partly because for several years the event has not added any significant new content, instead choosing to rely on largely the same missions which were released between 2017-2019. Given that this seasonal event is twinned so uniquely with Overwatch's wider overarching narrative, we suspect the lack of 'new' content could be related to the delays surrounding Overwatch 2.
Overwatch Archives 2022 Release Date
At the time of writing Blizzard has not confirmed an official release date for the Archives event in 2022. However, Blizzard normally releases seasonal events like clockwork at set times of the year, so we have a fairly solid idea of when to expect it to arrive later this year. To help, here's a quick look at when the event has previously started and ended in previous years:
|2017||Overwatch Uprising||April 11||May 2|
|2018||Overwatch Retribution||April 10||April 30|
|2019||Overwatch Storm Rising||April 16||May 6|
|2020||Archives 2020||March 12||April 2|
|2021||Archives 2021||April 6||April 27|
Bar the one outlier that is 2020, the Archives event has traditionally started in early April, released on a Tuesday. We suspect we'll see the same happen in 2022 and with this in mind, we think we'll probably see the next Archives event start on either April 5 or April 12. For the time being though this is just speculation, and we'll have to wait on an official announcement from Blizzard for confirmation.
What Modes and Events Are Available?
As we touched on previously, we don't think the 2022 Archives event will add any new PvE missions (although we'd love to be proven wrong). It's most likely that fans will once again be able to experience the same three story-driven co-op missions we've seen previously.
In 2021 the team added 'Challenge Missions' which were effectively the same missions with various modifiers to increase the difficulty, but its hard to see how they can iterate on these further.
You can find a recap of the three-story missions, along with their official descriptions, just below:
Overwatch Uprising Story Mission
"Journey seven years into the past and join an Overwatch strike team fighting through the streets of King's Row to quell an uprising led by Null Sector, a rogue group of omnics. There are no reinforcements. Failure is not an option. The future depends on you.
Play as one of four Overwatch agents (Tracer, Torbjörn, Reinhardt, or Mercy) in Story Mode, bring a hero of your choice into the fray with All Heroes Mode, or endure the deadly modifications introduced by Challenge Missions."
Overwatch Retribution Story Mission
"After the terrorist organization known as Talon launches an attack on an Overwatch facility, the peacekeeping force is unable to respond. But Blackwatch, Overwatch's secretive strike force, plays by its own rules. Travel eight years into the past and join Blackwatch as they seek to capture one of Talon's highest-ranking members.
Play as one of four Blackwatch agents in Story Mode (Cassidy, Moira, Genji, or Reyes/Reaper), bring a hero of your choice into the fray with All Heroes Mode, or endure the deadly modifications introduced by Challenge Missions."
Overwatch Storm Rising Story Mission
"As thunderclouds gather, four Overwatch operatives pursue the devious entrepreneur Maximilien through the streets of Havana. A clever and calculating omnic, Maximilien handles finances for the international terrorist organization Talon.
Play as one of four Overwatch agents in Story Mode (Tracer, Genji, Winston, or Mercy), bring a hero of your choice into the fray with All Heroes Mode, or endure the deadly modifications introduced by Challenge Missions."
Overwatch Archives Skins
As with every seasonal event in the game, there's a wide variety of new cosmetics to collect, including sprays, emotes, victory poses and so much more.
Naturally, new skins are what's most coveted and we suspect we'll see more added in 2022. Normally this comes in the form of a handful of new Legendary skins available in loot boxes, and a couple of Epic skins that can only be earned through weekly challenges.
Along with however many new skins are added to the game, players will of course be able to unlock all past Archives skins, which by our count is a total of 43 skins at the time of writing.
That's everything you need to know about the Overwatch Archives event for 2022. If you've been thinking of switching to a completely new role, why not take a look at a rundown of the Best Support, Tank and DPS Heroes in the game currently.