Xbox Wire can exclusively reveal one of Overwatch 2’s upcoming One-Punch Man collaboration skins – support hero Kiriko in the form of Terrible Tornado. The legendary skin comes as part of a wider collaboration between Overwatch 2 and One-Punch Man, which has already seen Doomfist revealed in a skin based on the eponymous superhero himself, Saitama.
The Legendary Terrible Tornado – Kiriko skin will arrive as part of a bundle, available for 2,100 coins in the Overwatch 2 in-game store. The bundle includes the legendary skin, the Terribly Impressive Victory Pose, and the Terrible Tornado namecard. The skin – and the rest of the One Punch Man collaboration – will be available from March 7 until April 6.
It’s the first major in-game collaboration for Overwatch since a LEGO-inspired Bastion skin in 2019, and I caught up with Art Director, Dion Rogers to find out how this unexpected partnership emerged:
“It’s something we’ve been wanting to do for a while,” he begins. “You know, Overwatch’s art style is kind of a marriage of West-meets-East aesthetics and values – there’s a bit of an anime look to Overwatch. So, being fans of anime, we were looking for a partner to collaborate with. And we looked at various studios, and then when One-Punch Man came up, it was surprising how many people on the team knew the anime, they loved it, they watched it. Aaron Keller, our game director totally knows all the characters and things backwards and forwards.
“So it was pretty surprising. We felt like that’s a great one because the team would be very excited by this idea – because the team knew the anime so well, and they were so excited, it’s at that point that it really felt like the right fit.”
Rogers wasn’t wrong. He says that the collaboration was so popular in the studio that, on the very first team meeting about it, the character artist for the Saitama – Doomfist skin began drawing designs during the call, and was sharing them soon after. If you wanted some measure of how much the Overwatch team likes One Punch Man, consider the fact that Doomfist had a voice line referencing the show for years – “One punch is all I need” – before this crossover came together. “Yeah, we were inspired,” Rogers laughs when I ask about it.
So, what about Kiriko’s costume specifically? Terrible Tornado is an incredibly powerful psychic in the world of One-Punch Man, and comes with a distinct personality all of her own. What made Kiriko the right fit to put on her costume?
“Part of the challenge of bringing some of the heroes in is basically [because of] a silhouette change. So gameplay-wise, we have to be careful. Doomfist, for example: as Saitama he gains a cape. Doomfist, we never give him a cape, in any of the skins, so that his silhouette – the shape that players are used to seeing – remains. So we were very careful when we applied this.
“Kiriko – on top of needing some more skins, because she’s a newer hero in the game – she fits the silhouette of [Terrible Tornado] pretty well. So it just felt like a natural choice – we could do her hairstyle, but a lot of Kiriko’s base silhouette comes from her skirt, the little kind of angled parts on her clothing. So we could keep that look while capturing [Terrible Tornado] in kind of cosplay form.”
Rogers raises an interesting point about this collaboration – in most games, you’d kind of assume the heroes were meant to be a version of the One-Punch Man characters but, in Overwatch 2, they’re cosplaying as them.
“Our heroes are basically aware of the anime and are fans too. And they’re cosplaying as the heroes.”
“That’s our approach; that our heroes are basically aware of the anime and are fans too. And they’re cosplaying as the heroes. So when you see Doomfist wearing the Saitama outfit, he’s a fan too.”
It raises the question – is this a one-off, or could we see more cosplay-esque collaborations for Overwatch 2 in future?
“We definitely want to do more collaborations over time, but with the right opportunity [because] it took us a long time to reach here – hopefully it doesn’t take us as long for the next one. But our goal is to do more. It was super fun for the team. It’s surprising, I think our approach overlaps with Overwatch very well.”
“And what I like about the new game is it’s seasonal, we have the seasonal cadence of things now. It’ll allow us to pursue more things like this, because we have targeted seasons that we can plug these things into.”
I can’t let Rogers go without asking the obvious follow-up: what would his dream collaboration be once One Punch Man is done? “Oh yeah. Dragon Ball – that’s one of them. Actually, Street Fighter, I’d love to combo with Street Fighter at some point.” Here’s hoping one (or both!) happen one day soon.
Overwatch 2 is out now on Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One. The Overwatch collaboration event, including the Legendary Terrible Tornado – Kiriko skin, will begin on March 7 and run until April 6.