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Arcade Mode guide - Overwatch

Our updated guide to everything you need to know about Overwatch's new Arcade Mode.

One of the big reveals at BlizzCon this year was the announcement of Arcade Mode for Overwatch. While the pros and the wannabe-pros do their thing over in Competitive Mode, it's in the Arcade that those who like to focus on fun - as well as glory - will find their new home.

After a very brief spell on the PTR, Arcade Mode is now live on everywhere, and we thought it would be handy to put together a one-stop guide covering everything you could possibly need to know about the mode. Note that we are still fleshing out some of the guides linked out from here, so check back soon for more updates.

First up, here's the lowdown on what Arcade Mode is all about:

  • Arcade Mode features 1v1 and 3v3 combat, as well as new twists on rulesets that are exclusive to this mode.
  • There will be at least one Arcade-exclusive map, and currently that's Ecopoint Antarctica.
  • Ecopoint Antarctica is a map themed around Mei's backstory.
  • One of the play sections is called All Brawls and features all of the Brawls released for the game so far. This replaces the old Brawl section of the game's interface.
  • Quick Play now features a single-Hero limit, just as Competitive Play mode has done for a while. Fans of stacking will have to head to the No Limits section of the Arcade to get their fix...

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Game types

There are a number of different game types to be found in Arcade Mode. Here's everything you need to know about them, with links to more detailed guides where appropriate. We're adding to this section all the time, so make sure you pop back every now and then to see what's new!

  • Mystery Duel is 1v1 and takes the form of a best-of-nine series of bouts. Whoever gets to five wins first wins overall. Each round involves randomly selected - yet identical - Heroes. (Update: Our Mystery Duel 1v1 guide is live now!)
  • Elimination is 3 v 3. Play in a best-of-five format and the first to three wins takes victory. Group up with friends or queue up solo if you prefer to jump in with strangers. Team compositions are locked per round, however, so choose carefully! (Update: Our Elimination 3v3 guide is live now!)
  • Mystery Heroes. Like the previous Brawl, the game picks your Hero for you!
  • No Limits. Allows multiple Hero stacking and essentially replaces Quick Play as we know it.
  • All Brawls. Contains some of the older Brawls that people love and want to be able to get stuck into. Cycles through a playlist at the end of each round into a new ruleset!

If you look at the icon for each game, you'll also see a sort of popularity indicator to help you estimate queue times. This popularity system will also help the developers work out what's worth keeping, what's not working, and what's worth iterating on further in the future.

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