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How to unlock heroes in Overwatch 2

How to expand your roster.

Overwatch 2 has many heroes to unlock, including new heroes, and original heroes from the first game.

You’ll want to unlock as many characters in Overwatch 2 as you can, so you can pick between a variety of tank, damage, and support play styles to fit your current team - or you may just want to know how to unlock your favourite character!

We’ve got details on how to unlock heroes in Overwatch 2 below, including how to get every original and new Overwatch character.

Once you've got a sizable roster, our Overwatch 2 tier list can help with who to play as.

On this page:

How to unlock the first heroes in Overwatch 2

For season 1, after you complete the tutorial and Practice range, Unranked matches will unlock, and so will your access to the 14 heroes available from the start of your PVP Overwatch adventure.

New heroes Sojourn and Junker Queen are part of this automatically unlocked group of heroes, but you only have until the end of Season 1 to log in and claim them if you’re a new Overwatch 2 player, or until the end of Season 2 if you’re a returning player with access to the Founder’s Pack.

Here’s a list of every hero automatically unlocked when you start PVP matches in Overwatch 2’s Season 1:

  • Junker Queen (new hero)
  • Sojourn (new hero)
  • Lucio
  • Mercy
  • Moira
  • Orisa
  • Pharah
  • Reaper
  • Reinhardt
  • Soldier 76
  • Torbjorn
  • Tracer
  • Widowmaker
  • Winston
  • Zarya

It’s not clear if there will be two (or any) new characters automatically unlocked for future seasons, but there are a few other ways we know of to unlock more heroes…

How to unlock all heroes in Overwatch 2

To unlock the rest of the original heroes featured in the first Overwatch, you need to complete a set number of games in any mode but ‘Practice Vs AI’ and ‘Custom Games’.

This is a little annoying if your favourite hero is locked behind over a hundred games played (sorry Echo mains), but is made a little better by wins counting as two games played.

So, while it says that Echo unlocks after completing 150 games, for example, if you’re really skilled (or lucky), the earliest you can get Echo is by winning 75 games.

These heroes are technically part of the Battle Pass, but as they’re rewards for completing games outside of each season, there doesn’t seem to be a time limit for how long you have to unlock each of these original characters.

Here’s all original Overwatch heroes and how to unlock them in Overwatch 2:

Overwatch 2 hero How to unlock
Genji Complete 1 game
DVA Complete 2 games
Cassidy Compete 3 games
ANA Complete 4 games
Hanzo Complete 9 games (wins grant double progress)
Junkrat Complete 12 games (wins grant double progress)
Roadhog Complete 15 games (wins grant double progress)
Symmetra Complete 20 games (wins grant double progress)
Zenyatta Complete 25 games (wins grant double progress)
Bastion Complete 30 games (wins grant double progress)
Sigma Complete 40 games (wins grant double progress)
Ashe Complete 50 games (wins grant double progress)
Brigitte Complete 60 games (wins grant double progress)
Mei Complete 70 games (wins grant double progress)
Doomfist Complete 85 games (wins grant double progress)
Baptiste Complete 100 games (wins grant double progress)
Sombra Complete 115 games (wins grant double progress)
Wrecking Ball Complete 130 games (wins grant double progress)
Echo Complete 150 games (wins grant double progress)

How to unlock new heroes each season in Overwatch 2

Currently, there’s only one way to unlock new heroes in Overwatch 2, and that’s by earning XP towards each season's Battle Pass. For Season 1, this is Kiriko.

You can inspect any new Battle Pass hero's abilities from the ‘New Hero’ section of the current Battle Pass menu.

There are two ways of unlocking new heroes in Overwatch 2 from the Battle Pass:

  • Paying for the premium tier to automatically unlock a new hero
  • Reaching a certain level on the free tier

In Season 1, for example, Kiriko is automatically added to your hero roster after purchasing the Battle Pass. To get her without spending money, however, you need to reach level 55 of the free tier.

Although this exact level requirement might change in future seasons, expect to still only be able to get a new Battle Pass hero from the start of the season by purchasing the premium tier.

There aren’t any available from the Shop at the start of Season 1, but new Overwatch 2 heroes like Junker Queen and Sojourn may become available to buy in the future if you missed their claiming periods in Season 1.

Hope you’re having fun in Overwatch 2!

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Overwatch 2

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Jessica Orr avatar

Jessica Orr

Senior Guides Writer

Jessica is a guides writer from Northern Ireland who likes screaming at her TV. Often at horror movies, occasionally at a Fortnite win. When not damaging her vocal cords, Jessica likes stressing over her inventory in RPGs, and getting lost in open worlds.