Now that Overwatch‘s newest hero, Ashe and her sidekick Bob, have been revealed, players are eagerly awaiting her release in the game’s next update. However, Blizzard has begun warning players that the update will be a bit more substantial than the usual patch, and in fact will require a complete reinstallation of the game. This isn’t because of Ashe and Bob alone; instead Blizzard is overhauling a significant number of back-end systems with the intent of optimizing the game as a whole.
The developer hasn’t given an exact release date for this update yet, but the fact that they’ve begun advising players of the increased download size could mean that it isn’t far off, maybe even within the next week or so. Blizzard made a post on its official forums explaining that with Overwatch‘s next update they’re unable to just overwrite existing content, and that both PC and console players will be getting a full reinstall.
They acknowledge that this might make things a bit difficult for those with limited internet connections, not to mention increase download times, but the point of the advance warning is to help players plan in advance.
“The next major patch will have some pretty fundamental changes to the game client. The number of back-end changes we’re putting in is substantial enough that we can’t just patch over the current content efficiently. As a result, when the next patch comes out, the client will fully reinstall itself to handle these changes. We know that this isn’t ideal for people on metered connections, so hopefully this announcement helps you prepare for this coming update.”
As for which back-end systems are being improved, players will need to wait for the patch notes upon release for all the details. However, Blizzard did confirm to Kotaku that among the changes are optimized memory for “constrained systems,” improved load times, reduced hard drive space on PS4, adjustments for future content, and overall bug fixes. Sounds like PC players that don’t have huge amounts of RAM or the most powerful specs can expect a smoother experience when running the game.
PC players looking to get the update as early as possible can leave the Battle.net app open to download the Overwatch client as it’s released over time, while those on PS4 and Xbox One will just need to wait until the update is release all at once for their console.