Overwatch Update Improves Loot Box Drops, Hearthstone Follows Suit

While Overwatch has seen immense success, one of its more divisive features has been its loot box system. Though Overwatch runs $40 for the standard version on PC and $60 on consoles, players can only unlock new cosmetic items through a F2P-like loot box system. These loot boxes are fairly rare in-game – you get one every time your account levels up, but otherwise you need to purchase them with real-world money – and with that in mind, it really stings when you get cosmetics items you already have.

Blizzard, it seems, has heard player complaints about getting duplicates from loot boxes and is now going to do something about it. In a new developer update, Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan announced that Overwatch loot boxes will soon drop far fewer duplicate items. Kaplan describes the change as a drastic one, though explains that you'll still find the stray duplicate here and there.

The one upshot of receiving duplicate items in loot boxes is that you were awarded credits based on their rarity. Credits can then be used to outright purchase the items you want, so does this change mean you'll be receiving fewer credits overall? It doesn't seem that way, with Kaplan saying that Blizzard is going to boost the number of credits found in loot boxes, hopefully making up the difference.

Over on the Hearthstone side of things, we're seeing similar changes being implemented with pulls from card packs. Ben Brode recorded a rather short video in which he describes these changes, announcing that Hearthstone players will soon find that they aren't receiving duplicate legendary cards from the packs they open. Brode says that by eliminating duplicate legendaries from card packs, it should make the process of receiving such a rare card much more exciting.

This also means that legendaries can be crafted "with impunity," according to Brode, as it means that you can craft a legendary card free from the fear that you'll receive it in a pack later on down the road. Just as well, when new expansions are released, Brode says that every player will be guaranteed to receive a legendary card within their first 10 packs from the new set.

Overwatch's changes seem to be arriving before Hearthstone's. The tweaks to Overwatch's loot box system will launch alongside the game's highlight update, which makes it easier for players on all platforms to capture notable moments in their games. Hearthstone's pack changes, on the other hand, won't arrive until the next expansion is launched later this year.