Why it matters: Nvidia continues to demonstrate the ultra-high framerates that its latest flagship GPU can coax out of recent and upcoming high-profile games. Blizzard decided to change Overwatch 2's performance metrics to utilize the graphics card's full potential as both products prepare to launch around the same time.
Nvidia recently told PC Gamer that Blizzard increased Overwatch 2's framerate cap to 600fps after seeing how well the upcoming title ran on the GeForce RTX 4090. Nvidia also confirmed Overwatch 2 would support its latency-reducing feature, Nvidia Reflex.
In a new demo, the RTX 4090 ran Overwatch 2 with framerates consistently over 360fps at 1440p, often topping 400fps and sometimes reaching 500. More impressive is that the demo likely ran at native 1440p without any resolution upscaling, instead displaying the 4090's potential in raw performance.
Blizzard and Nvidia did not indicate that Overwatch 2 will support Nvidia's framerate-boosting DLSS technology, much less the new DLSS3, which brought Cyberpunk 2077 up to 171fps at maximum ray tracing settings. The Overwatch 2 beta confirmed that the title supports AMD FSR, but it's unlikely Nvidia would use its competitor's upscaling tech in a demonstration.
Esports shooters like Overwatch 2 are optimized to enable extremely high framerates, but Blizzard likely didn't foresee a new GPU topping 500fps, thus the change in maximum framerate. No one confirmed the game's previous framerate cap, but PCGamingWiki suggests that the first Overwatch had a 400fps cap.
Most high-end monitors only reach refresh rates of 240Hz or 360Hz, but the 4090's performance may justify the Asus Rog Swift 500Hz, which Nvidia unveiled in May. Another manufacturer, AU Optronics, may be trying to make a 540Hz display. However, both monitors are only 1080p, at which the 4090 would achieve even higher framerates for Overwatch 2 than in Nvidia's recent demo if it doesn't run into CPU limits.
Overwatch 2 launches on October 4, replacing its predecessor, which hit PCs over six years ago. Legacy servers will go offline permanently a little over a day before Overwatch 2's free-to-play multiplayer version launches. The game's paid PvE portion debuts sometime in 2023.
The RTX 4090 arrives a week after Overwatch 2 on October 12, starting at $1,599. The RTX 4080 hits stores in November with an $899 12GB version and a $1,199 16GB variant.