21:9 Ratio Support Arrives on the Overwatch PTR

Many in the #PCMASTERRACE camp have been requesting that Blizzard implements  support for the ultra-widescreen monitor Overwatch since its release.  There’re tons upon tons of posts on Reddit, Twitter and other places requesting this. As of yesterday, Blizzard has finally provided that support and now the 21:9 ratio is available for usage on the Overwatch PTR (Ana is playable on there as well now). So now everything is happy go luck, right?

Well, not exactly.Blizzard has been doing their research it seems on games that have allowed the 21:9 ratio be used. Many of the complaints were that it gives an unfair advantage while that ratio is in use. Being an owner of an ultra-widescreen monitor, with 21:9 support, I get to see more screen and the maps I’m playing on. And while this isn’t considered cheating, it is an unfair advantage. So, Blizzard ultimately chooses to implement a restriction when the 21:9 ratio is in effect.

We do not plan to increase the max FOV beyond 103, in any resolution,says Jeff Kaplan. As a result, this doesn’t leave us with a lot of options for 21:9 support. I know this is not the answer our 21:9 players want to hear. But we feel like it would be unfair to 16:10 and 16:9 players if 21:9 gave a substantial FOV advantage.

If you chose to use the 21:9 ratio, while you’ll have the screen widened for you, the FOV / Field of View is set at a maximum setting of 103. This ends up cutting down the viewable areas on the top and bottom of your screen. Take a look at the screenshots below. The first one is in the standard 16:9 ratio. As you can see, the top and bottom are fully viewable. The next image is in the 21:9 ratio and as you can see, the top and bottom are trimmed. The added benefit is that you lose the black bars on the side of the screen, but in my opinion, the black bars are hardly worth losing FOV and verticals.

16:9 Ratio
overwatch-16-9-enabled

21:9 Ratio
overwatch-21-9-enabled

So now this poses an interesting dilemma; do you stick with the 16:9 / 16:10 ratio and enjoy the entire vertical view? Or do you switch it up and use the 21:9 ratio, giving you a view without the black bars but with a reduced vertical view? For me, I’ll just stick with the 16:9 ratio, especially since I’m playing in the competitive mode. I just can’t afford to give up any advantage and in this situation, 21:9 is more of a cosmetic change up than anything else.

What about you? Are you happy that the 21:9 support has been added and will you use it now? Let us know in the comments below.

About The Author

Keith Mitchell
Editor-in-chief and all-around good guy!

Keith Mitchell is the Founder and Editor in Chief of The Outerhaven. A grizzled IT professional during the day, but a passionate lover of video games after his 9-5 grid. Loves playing the Dark Souls series and has been gaming since he was 6 years old. Available for podcasts upon request.