Blizzard's Overwatch Beta Launches, Recommended Specs Surprisingly Modest

👤by Tim Harmer Comments 📅28.10.2015 23:02:07


The Closed Beta for Blizzard's Free To Play First Person Shooter Overwatch dropped yesterday with a bang, briefly hitting the top of the Twitch stream charts against well established titles such as League of Legends and CS:GO and despite few players. Whilst the initial hours of spectated gameplay appear to show the odd bug, perhaps the most surprising aspect of the launch is how smooth it has been for those few playing the game, especially with regards to performance.

This solid performance, that for now appears to be almost ubiquitous, is reflected in very modest minimum and recommended specifications (at especially as it pertains to NVIDIA GPU hardware).

Minimum (targeting 30fps):

- Operating system: Windows Vista/7/ 8/10 64-bit (latest Service Pack)

- Processor: Intel Core i3 or AMD Phenom™ X3 865

- Video: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460, ATI Radeon HD 4850, or Intel HD Graphics 4400

- Memory: 768 MB VRAM, 4 GB System RAM

- Storage: 7200 RPM with 5 GB available HD space

Recommended (targeting 60fps on Medium settings):

- Operating system: Windows Vista/7/ 8/10 64-bit (latest Service Pack)

- Processor: Intel Core i5 or AMD Phenom II X3, 2.8 GHz

- Video: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 or ATI Radeon HD 7950

- Memory: 2 GB VRAM, 6 GB System RAM

- Storage: 7200 RPM with 5 GB available HD space


The only glaring inconsistency in recommended specifications is that for an NVIDIA GTX 660 or ATI Radeon HD 7950, two GPUs with markedly different on-paper performance. In all other aspects the specs are utterly mainstream, even in terms of VRAM and HDD storage. That fact reflects Blizzard's typical aim of making their games playable on as wide a range of systems as possible.

Whilst the experience for those who have got in the Beta thus far has been little but positive, the make-up of those invited has drawn considerable ire from those looking forward to the game. As with other high-profile Beta programs most selected in the first wave of players seem to be drawn from high-profile streamers and the press, resulting in it being described more as a Marketing Beta than a Testing Beta. Even so, prominent members of the eSports community have pointed out that professional FPS players have been among the first wave, and there are few individuals who you'd want more than this cohort when it comes to balancing your game.

If you have opted in to the Overwatch Beta you can check your invite status via the Battle.net account management page (as well update your Beta settings and system specs). A second wave of invites to the EU and US has already gone out, and no doubt more will be released as Blizzard gains confidence in their server stability. In the mean time it's likely that your favourite streamers and Youtubers will be creating content as we speak.


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