For all its colorful characters and engaging worldbuilding, Overwatch is a little light on canon — fans have had to piece together the game’s history and lore from cryptic tweets and in-game clues like voice lines and map design. Thankfully, the development team has regularly partnered with writers and illustrators to publish short comics that have expanded the game’s worldbuilding and given fans new insight into their favorite Overwatch heroes.
These extra details make the game that much more fun to play and reward fans for their detective work with confirmation of their long-held assumptions. Here are 10 additions to the canon to come from the official Overwatch comics.
10 LGBTQ representation
Overwatch is notable for the diversity of its cast, and the comics have shed light on the lifestyles two of the game’s most popular heroes: Soldier: 76 and Tracer, both of whom have been confirmed as gay. Tracer’s girlfriend appears in the Christmas-themed Overwatch comic Reflections, while Bastet includes a reference to a previous male partner of Soldier: 76. LGBTQ representation is especially important in video games, where queer characters are a rarity, and overall the response from fans has been positive.
9 Widowmaker’s husband revealed
Just judging from Widowmaker’s codename, you know she has a checkered past. Retribution, an Overwatch comic focusing on Overwatch’s covert ops division Blackwatch, introduces Amelie’s husband Gérard Lacroix as an anti-Talon agent working alongside Gabriel Reyes, who would later become the Talon assassin Reaper. While Gérard’s story doesn’t extend to his marriage to Widowmaker, we do get to see him as a capable agent who survives an attack and works alongside Overwatch agents like Jack Morrison and Ana Amari.
8 Zarya’s prejudice against Omnics
War is hell and no one knows this better than Zarya, whose hatred of Omnics is obvious from her in-game voice lines, especially in relation to her home country of Russia. In Searching, Zarya is told to pursue the elusive hacker Sombra, later revealed as an Overwatch hero in her own right. She’s forced to work with an Omnic on her quest, which causes her to reveal that her dislike for Omnics stems from them destroying her village, as well as waging war against her and her comrades.
7 Tracer’s time travelling powers
While the in-game dialogue explains that Tracer’s time powers are controlled by a chronal accelerator designed by Overwatch scientist Winston, it’s not clear where Tracer’s time powers come from and whether she’s always been able to control them. Uprising depicts Tracer as a new recruit to Overwatch, who is shown to be struggling to contain her powers which were brought on by an unseen “accident.” While the details of her powers remain unclear, the comic sheds light on how she developed her time travel skills, as well as the work that went into her mastering them.
6 The queen of Junkertown
Before the game’s Junkertown map was revealed, we knew little about Roadhog and Junkrat other than their origins down under: it was clear they were outlaws with a love of explosives and grappling hooks. The Wasted Land comic depicts Roadhog, real name Mako Rutledge, as a lone vigilante who teams up with Junkrat to lie, cheat, and steal his way to the top. References to the “queen” of Junkertown, Roadhog’s history with the Omnic war, and their falling out, remain vague. But what is clear is Roadhog and Junkrat, who team up at the end of the comic, are made for each other.
5 Doomfist is war ready
Before his reveal as the game’s 25th playable hero, hype for Doomfist was extremely high, as players were curious to find out how the character would fit into the world of Overwatch. The comic Masquerade depicts Doomfist as one of Talon’s deadliest operatives, partnering with Reaper, Sombra, and Widowmaker to stoke the flames of war with the Omnics. While Doomfist’s motivations are unclear, the comic shows that Doomfist and the rest of Talon are actively trying to start a war with the Omnics. Based on the character’s voicelines, players might guess that Doomfist is hoping to make the world stronger through “conflict.”
4 How Ana lost her eye
As the first Overwatch hero to be released after the game debuted, a lot was resting on Ana’s shoulders to continue the lore of the game and build on its story. Ana didn’t disappoint — a sniper and one of Overwatch’s most trusted agents, Ana’s mysterious disappearance and return made for interesting interactions with heroes like Reaper, Soldier: 76, and Reinhardt. Her missing eye was revealed to have been lost in a firefight with Widowmaker, whom Ana discovered to be the captured wife of her former friend Gérard Lacroix.
3 Genji and Mercy
There’s nothing Overwatch fans love more than ‘shipping their favourite characters together. You’ve got Mercy and Pharah, Hanzo and McCree, Tracer and Widowmaker. But the game’s development team itself hasn’t done much in the way of matchmaking its heroes; which is why the hint of a romance between Mercy and Genji in the Reflections comic is so revelatory. Genji is depicted in Nepal with his mentor Zenyatta sending Mercy a letter in her medic tent. While it’s only a subtle hint at a possible flame, it was enough to send fans into a fervor.
2 An unlikely friendship
Seeing as Bastion doesn’t speak in a language we can understand, players have had to piece together its history from other characters’ dialogues as well as media such as the Overwatch short “The Last Bastion.” But in the comic Binary, it’s revealed that Bastion struck up an unlikely friendship with none other than Omnic hater Torbjorn, who is tasked with taking down Bastion before showing it mercy after it refuses to attack him. In-game dialogue has never referenced any connection between Bastion and Torbjorn before, making this comic’s development all the more interesting.
1 Symmetra and Vishkar
Symmetra was never a part of Overwatch, so her role in the lore was unclear until the publication of A Better World, an Overwatch comic that depicts Symmetra’s role in the Vishkar corporation, a technology company that plans to “save” the community in Rio de Janeiro from poverty. Through clues in the game’s dialogue, it’s clear that Lucio is opposed to Vishkar and steals some of the company’s technology to fight them as a folk hero. But A Better World also depicts the internal conflict of Symmetra, whose belief in the goodness of Vishkar is tested after her boss makes a questionable choice to protect Vishkar’s interests.