Overwatch is one of the games that Humble Monthly subscribers are getting over the next 30 days as part of that $12-per-month service. Blizzard’s popular class-based team shooter debuted in May 2016, and it has continued to attract fans regularly ever since. But now more than two years removed from that launch, Blizzard is looking for ways to bring in new players that may not normally want to drop the $40 to purchase it through Battle.net.
Humble Monthly is Humble Bundle’s subscription that gets you a handful of new games each month. This membership program is a relatively cost-effective way for people to build up their library with interesting games, and unlike something like Xbox Game Pass, EA Origin Access, or PlayStation Now, you don’t lose access to the Humble Monthly games when you cancel your subscription.
So Overwatch on Humble is going to reach people who may not usually try a shooter or have avoided the game because it’s not on Steam. But whatever the reason, those people now no longer have an excuse not to at least try out the game.
This is likely indicative of a new phase in Overwatch’s life. Blizzard is looking at audiences beyond its traditional fans and hardcore shooter players. It could potentially reach those who are more hesitant by shifting to free-to-play, but a subscription offer like Humble Monthly provides an alternative that doesn’t require Blizzard to pull the plug on the revenue from the upfront cost.
Blizzard also has its esports initiative, which is more of a marketing push for the game than a money-making venture in its own right. But the Overwatch League can work in conjunction with something like the Humble deal so that people can access the game affordably and also have esports content to consume if they do end up getting into the game.
And, of course, Blizzard is trying to get more people into Overwatch so that it has more customers that may want to spend money on loot boxes.
As for what Humble Bundle gets out of this, Overwatch is a big name that should draw more attention to its subscription service. But Blizzard and Humble have also worked it out so that anyone who stays subscribed for the November and December Humble Monthly drops will get Overwatch loot boxes.