Screenshot of the Overwatch player icon for Season 8 of competitive play

A brand new year has now arrived, and with it a brand new season of Overwatch Competitive Play. However, while not much has changed in the real world over the past 24 hours, Overwatch's freshly launched eight season has brought with it some potentially major adjustments.

First and foremost, the maximum Skill Rating difference between the highest and lowest rated player on the same team has been greatly reduced. So for Bronze-Diamond games the maximum range is 1000 SR, 500 SR for Master games, and a surprisingly small 250 SR for Grandmaster games. This system doesn't seem to be active in placement matches since the few games I've played were all over the place in terms of SR, but that is a small price to pay for what is hopefully going to be some of the most balanced matches Overwatch has seen so far.

The second and final change is the removal of the performance factor in Skill Rating adjustments for Diamond-tier players and above. In other words, the only thing that now matters in high level matches is ensuring that your team wins! So if you ever feel like the team needs an aggressive tank in order to soak up all of the damage and create an opening for the DPS players, you can now freely swap to what is needed without worrying about losing massive amounts of SR because the system thinks you're terrible at the game.

How exactly all of these changes will pan out, I'm afraid I don't know, but on paper they appear to be exactly what Overwatch needs. So here's to hoping that Season 8 will be the best one so far! Good luck with your placement matches!