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Get into Overwatch for free next weekend

On PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

Mei and Zarya fire their weapons on Gibraltar in a screenshot from Overwatch

Overwatch is going free-to-play next weekend, from Sept. 9-12. Blizzard Entertainment is giving PlayStation 4 and Xbox One owners a chance to try its first new franchise in years, with access to all 22 characters and every available map.

During the free period, players can earn Loot Boxes and level up characters for as long as they like. There’s no registration required to get into the game, and the full Overwatch experience is open for business from 11 a.m. PT on Friday, Sept. 9 until 4 p.m. PT on Monday, Sept. 12. If the Overwatch newbie falls hard for the game during the free weekend, they can pick up the Origins Edition release and maintain all of their progress.

On PS4, players won’t need a PlayStation Plus subscription to go online with the team-based multiplayer shooter; a subscription to Xbox Live Gold is required for Xbox One, however.

Overwatch has already attracted more than 15 million players into the fray since it launched in May. The multiplayer game has spawned an involved alternate reality game, comic books, animated shorts and more content. The character-based shooter also has a long backstory, which we charted in our timeline. Learn the history of Overwatch below before getting into the game for the first — or five hundredth — time.

Correction: The free weekend kicks off at 11 a.m. PT, a little later than we originally stated. The story above has been corrected with the right time.

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