Different heroes have different shorts, comics, and lore pieces. Some maps offer insight into the things that have changed, like Eichenwalde showing us the relics of the Omnic War and the aftermath. But what I would like to know is what is the Overwatch timeline, in terms of all the shorts and lore pieces we have had.

In a recent Overwatch-news lore, a young girl who specialized in drones and AI was interviewed, apparently for having won a competition. This sparked a series of debates on whether or not this "interview" was given in the context of the past, or the present, and Michael Chu, the lead writer on Overwatch, said that the interview was occuring in the "present time" of Overwatch:

That date is just our "real world" publish date. The interview takes place in the present day of the OW timeline.

For example, does S:76's short that happens on Dorado happen around the same time Sombra, Reaper, and Widowmaker infiltrate Volskaya Industries? Does Recall happen before these two, or during the two, or after? For some it's clear what place they take, like Alive starting before the rest of the shorts, but unclear if it takes place after or before the Omnic War.

In essence, I would love to understand what is the "now" of Overwatch. We are already given context into events past, like the Omnic War, the destruction of OW headquarters, the "death" of Ana and such, but are we given concrete dates of when these events have passed, and what is the "present day" of Overwatch?

  • 2
    I've seen countless number of theories but not really a set timeline flow which has been confirmed by blizzard, I hope they release a book or something in the future which will help
    – Wouter
    Feb 22, 2017 at 10:52
  • This may or may not help a little bit - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overwatch_(video_game)#Plot
    – n_plum
    Feb 22, 2017 at 12:58
  • I found this article a way back. I did not fully read it yet, but I think its a pretty good reference: polygon.com/2016/5/24/11722688/overwatch-timeline
    – TheBird956
    Feb 22, 2017 at 13:51
  • ^ I've seen that one too, unfortunately it stops at about where launch is so it's not including ana, sombra, or anything present day.
    – n_plum
    Feb 22, 2017 at 16:29
  • I just watched a video on all the overwatch charechters origins and this popped up in arqade ,_, .
    – Reflexive
    Feb 26, 2017 at 0:33

1 Answer 1


According to this source, the "present day" of Overwatch is around 60 years in the future- so approximating, probably about 2077-2080. Winston tells us in his short the First Omnic Crisis was around 30 years from the "present day", so that would place the Crisis around 2050.

This makes sense, since Ana had Pharah at 28, as an active member of the original Overwatch team, and her page tells she's 60 years old, which is about a 30 year gap.

I guess we can safely assume the "present day" is around 2080, so all of the events taking place are probably from 2080 onwards. Hopefully Blizzard releases more accurate info later on...

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