Australia attempted to remain on good terms with the Omnics, even giving the Outback for them to call home. This didn't end well however, as the human population with displaced, and formed the Australian Liberation Front as a rebellion. This led to the destruction of the Australian omnium, turning the outback into an irradiated wasteland.
Brazil was bombed by Omnic-controlled fighter jets, causing untold damage to the region. Afterwards they were hit by massive economic upheaval.
India's population had been displaced by the Crisis. The city of Utopaea had been built by the Vishkar Corporation to house them.
Mexico's power grid and infrastructure had been destroyed from the Crisis, leaving the entire nation without power. Because of this, the Crisis had been nicknamed "La Medianoche". Many children were left orphaned from the attack.
Russia managed to shut down the Siberian omnium with little help from Overwatch, something they're proud of. The nation experienced economic growth from the revitalization of mechanized labor.
South Korea would continue to be attack by a colossal Omnic, forcing them to form the MEKA program, which fights to his very day.
The organization stood proud for many years, but as time passed, Overwatch began to crumble. Rumors of human rights violations, carried out by Overwatch's sister branch Blackwatch, were exposed by Gabriel Reyes, who grew jealous of his friend Jack Morrison for not being made commander of Overwatch. Furthermore, a terrorist organization known as Talon emerged from the shadows, assassinated key member Gérard Lacroix by brainwashing his wife Amélie and having him executed in his sleep.
A prior attempt at Gérard's assassination with a bomb was tied to one of Talon's biggest financiers, an Italian smuggler named Antonio. Officially, Overwatch was disallowed from taking Antonio in for questioning, since his connections with government agencies and law enforcement made him untouchable. Blackwatch, however, had no such compunctions. To that end, Reyes led a strike time consisting of himself, Jesse McCree, Moira O'Deorain, and Genji Shimada to Venice with the intent of bringing Antonio in. It became apparent, however, that even if Reyes's team took Antonio in, the smuggler's connections would see him free in short order. Realizing the truth of the matter, Reyes opts to put a more permanent end to Antonio and murders him. While Reyes's team was able to make its escape from Talon's forces, the incident led to Blackwatch's existence being exposed.
With the public turned against them, and the organization falling victim of infighting, leading to the destruction of their headquarters in Switzerland, led to the PETRAS Act.
From that point forward, all Overwatch activity was officially deemed illegal. Having fallen from grace, the standing of the organization has left Overwatch as being beyond saving in the eyes of many. Since then, many agents have gone their separate ways, either laying low or trying help out the best they can. It seemed like Overwatch done for good, and Talon was free to wreak havoc however they please.
Then the recall happened.
Talon raided Watchpoint: Gibraltar in an operation led by Gabriel Reyes, now known as Reaper. The goal was to extract the data revealing the locations of the former Overwatch agents, so Talon can put an end to Overwatch permanently. Winston, who resided there, only barely thwarted their plans. After having contemplated the idea many times, Overwatch was officially reinstated. Many members, both old and new, were called back to serve the organization once again, despite risking prosecution in doing so.
Original Strike Team (Founders)
Jack Morrison was raised by a family of farmers in Bloomington, Indiana. As soon as he was able, he joined the United States military and became part of the experimental Soldier Enhancement Program. Not long after, he and his friend Gabriel Reyes joined the Overwatch Strike Team during the Omnic Crisis. Though he wasn't the leader, he was the moral support of the group. After the Crisis had ended, he was promoted to the Overwatch Strike Commander in favor over Reyes. He personally oversaw Overwatch's rise into prominence, having trained new agents and led them on peacekeeping missions.
After many years of service, the organization eventually fell apart. The biggest factor was Reyes' jealousy over Jack being made leader and having all of the glory, while he led Blackwatch and was put in charge of handling their Dirty Business. When Reyes leaked Blackwatch's atrocities to the public, the United Nation investigated the organization. During this time, Jack was seemingly killed in a conflict with Reyes that led to the destruction of the Swiss Headquarters. With the leader supposedly dead, and their headquarters destroyed, Overwatch was dismantled soon afterwards. Still, even in death, Jack is hailed as a hero to the people, fondly remembered for his actions that inspired many.
In reality, Jack survived. Donning a mask, and stealing a Pulse Rifle from Helix Security International, he became known to the public as Soldier: 76. He has begun a string of attacks on financial institutions and former Overwatch bases to avenge Overwatch, and get answers as to what caused its dissolution. He now travels the world alongside his former subordinate Ana Amari, while also living on the run from Talon.
Gabriel Reyes hailed from the melting pot that is Los Angeles, California. When he was able, he joined the United States military and became a senior officer. He was also part of the experimental Soldier Enhancement Program. Not long after, he and his friend Jack Morrison joined the Overwatch Strike Team during the Omnic Crisis. During that time, he was in charge of leading them into battle. After the Crisis had ended, he was passed up in favor of Jack in becoming Strike Commander of Overwatch. Instead, he became head of Blackwatch, which is Overwatch's sister branch in covert operations deemed too morally ambiguous for the other Overwatch agents to do in public.
Over time however, he grew to resent Morrison for receiving the public's adoration, while he received none. Eventually, this led to him organizing a rebellion within Overwatch. At the same time, he leaked Blackwatch's many atrocities to the public in order to turn opinion against the organization. Then he attacked the Swiss Headquarters, which led to the explosion that supposedly "killed" him.
However, he narrowly survived. Exactly what happened to him is unknown, but his cells were altered to decay and regenerate at an increased rate, leaving him in a constant state of pain. Reyes donned a new identity: Reaper. A black-robed terrorist who now hunts down and kills all former Overwatch agents he can find. To this end, he allies himself with the same organization Overwatch opposed: Talon. Though the full extent of his membership isn't certain, it is mutually beneficial, as they share the same goal of exterminating Overwatch permanently.
Ana Amari was one of Egypt's most skilled snipers. Her natural marksmanship, instincts, and cybernetic eye made her one of the army's finest. She was chosen to be a member of the Overwatch Strike Team during the Omnic Crisis. After the Crisis had ended, Ana became the second-in-command of Overwatch, answering only to Jack Morrison. As a member of Overwatch, she raised her daughter Fareeha alongside the other heroes of the organization. While Fareeha hoped to one day join among the ranks, Ana, knowing what combat was like, wished she would reconsider.
Much later in life, Ana went on a mission to rescue hostages from the terrorist organization Talon. After losing several of her operatives to a Talon sniper, she created a diversion using explosive drones while the rest of the team escaped. She then dueled the sniper in a one-on-one fight. Though she initially had the advantage, Ana broke her helmet with a well-placed shot, only to reveal that the sniper was none other than Amélie Lacroix, the wife of the now-deceased Overwatch agent Gérard Lacroix. Not knowing the true reason for why she turned traitor, Ana was in shock, which enabled Amélie to exploit her hesitation and shoot out her eye. She was presumed dead afterwards.
But Ana survived. After spending some time under the radar to reflect on her life, Ana became a bounty hunter, while sabotaging Talon operations. She rescued Jack as he was attacked by Reaper at a Talon base. Since then, the two have traveled together while being on the run from Talon.
Torbjörn Lindholm hailed from Sweden, and was one of the Ironclad Guild's top weapons designers and engineers, whose machinery was used all over the world. His greatest creation was the Titan, a giant mech capable of efficient urban development. When the Omnic Crisis began, the God Program utilized the Titans and other weapons that Torbjörn developed to wreak havoc across the world. With his knowledge of the weapons, he became an integral role in defeating the Omnics, and became a member of the Overwatch Strike Team.
Until the collapse, Torbjörn stayed with the organization from beginning to end. At some point, he worked with Mercy to develop a prototype Bionic Rifle.
Torbjörn was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, he was near Moscow, Russia.
Reinhardt was a highly decorated German soldier and a former member of the Crusaders. His commanding officer, Balderich von Adler, was originally selected to join Overwatch. Following Balderich's death in the defense of Eichenwald, Reinhardt joined Overwatch in his stead. With is J08 Crusader Armor, he was one the strongest members, and their biggest supporter. He stayed alongside Overwatch until near its end, when he was forced into retirement following the supposed "death" of fellow Strike Team member Ana Amari.
After Overwatch's collapse, he donned his armor once again, and now travels Europe alongside his companion Brigitte. During this time, he drove a gang called The Dragons out of a small town in the name of being a hero.
Reinhardt was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, he was in Nuuk, Greenland. He would eventually return to Eichenwald, mulling over the events that lead to Balderich's death and his replacement in Overwatch. Despite attempts to disuade him by his page, Brigitte Lindholm, he resolved that he had to respond, to honor his fallen mentor, leaving the challenge medallion Balderich had received at his resting place before setting off to respond to Winston's call.
The sixth member of the Overwatch Strike Team. Almost nothing is known about this person, not even their gender. Apparently, Liao is an expert on cryogenics, according to a Brazilian magazine. Whatever role Liao served for the Strike Team, and whether their cryogenics expertise has anything to do with Mei, remains to be seen.
Angela "Mercy" Ziegler was orphaned during the Omnic Crisis. As a prodigy in medical science, she attracted the attention of Overwatch at the age of 17, later becoming the head of a Swiss hospital before she joined Overwatch, and became the head of medical research. There, she developed the Valkyrie suit that allowed her to take her science to the battlefield. During this time, she saved the life of Genji Shimada, who had been nearly killed by his brother Hanzo. Additionally, she worked with Torbjörn to design a prototype Biotic Rifle.
Over time, Mercy became disillusioned with Overwatch's stance, disliking the overly-militaristic nature in enforcing peace, which went against her philosophy. After the Swiss Headquarters was destroyed, she attended a UN committee to explain how the relationship between Jack Morrison and Gabriel Reyes deteriorated. Afterwards, Mercy took to the battlefields across the world in order to treat the sick and wounded.
Mercy was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, she was in Iraq taking care of injured war victims.
Jesse McCree had already made a name for himself when he was in his teens as a member of the notorious Deadlock Gang, who trafficked weapons and equipment across the Southwestern United States. Eventually, they were caught in a sting operation by Overwatch, specifically conducted by Gabriel Reyes. He was given two options: rot in a maximum security prison, or apply his skills for Overwatch (and more secretly, Blackwatch). He chose the latter. As a member, he was taught a great deal about combat under the mentorship of Reyes. He also enjoyed the freedom that came with being a member of Blackwatch, not held back by red tape.
However, Overwatch's influence eventually waned, and Blackwatch turned against the organization. This, combined with McCree having issues with Reyes' leadership, led to him leaving before Overwatch crumbled. Since then, McCree has worked as a bounty hunter and vigilante, and true to his nature, is wanted by the government.
McCree was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, he was near Indiana or Kentucky in the United States.
Mei-Ling Zhou was a member of Overwatch's ecological studies. Overwatch assigned her to work at Ecopoint: Antarctica along with other scientists. Unfortunately, the watchpoint was hit by a massive polar storm that cut off their communications with Overwatch and left them stranded. With no other option, they entered cryostasis to survive until Overwatch could make a rescue mission. Nine years had passed when Mei was released from hibernation to find that not only have the environmental anomalies her team had been tracking worsened significantly, but she was the only survivor after the rest of her team's cryopods had malfunctioned. Worst yet, she discovered that Overwatch had been disbanded during her sleep, with the external and internal strife causing the shuttering of the other Ecopoints, as well as possibly preventing any official rescue mission to the base after the polar storm..
Mei was able to eventually receive Winston's recall message, and set out from Ecopoint: Antarctica to rejoin the new Overwatch, knowing the data she and her deceased colleagues collected will be crucial to saving the world. She may or may not be publicly affiliated with Overwatch, however, as she has been seen on TV reports as a climatology expert with no reference to previous or current Overwatch affiliation since her reemergence.
Genji Shimada was born as the second heir of the Shimada Empire in Hanamura, Japan, three years younger than his brother Hanzo. Due to being the younger child, Genji had none of responsibilities that Hanzo had been tasked with. Combined with his disgust over criminal activities in general, he didn't take part in their crimes and instead perused the life of a playboy. After their father died, Hanzo became the head of the Shimada Empire, and was tasked to kill his younger brother by the clan's elders, fearing that his carelessness would be liability that would drag the clan down. Hanzo obeyed, and seemingly killed his younger brother, before leaving the clan out of disgust for his actions.
The truth is, Genji survived, but only barely. Overwatch rescued Genji when he was on the brink of death, and gave him a deal which he accepted. In an operation led by Mercy, he was converted into a cyborg to save his life. Now allied with Overwatch, Genji led operations against his former clan. After dismantling the Shimada Empire, reducing the organization into a state of near-nonexistence, Genji felt conflicted within himself due to his nature. He left Overwatch sometime before it crumbled, and began wandering the Earth, eventually finding residence in the Shambali Monastery in Nepal.
Genji was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, he was in Japan, pursuing his brother Hanzo near Hanamura.
Lena Oxton was born in the heart of London, where she had a desire for adventure. As one of the best pilots in her age, Overwatch recruited her to test out an experimental fighter jet that could teleport, called the Slipstream. However, during the test flight, the jet malfunctioned, leaving Tracer with a case of chronal disassociation. After months of phasing in and out of time, Winston invented a chronal accelerator to keep her anchored to the present. Though her days as a pilot were over, she became a highly successful field agent until Overwatch's disbandment.
Afterwards, Tracer continued to reside in London as an adventurer, saving people whenever she can.
Tracer was one of the agents that were recalled to serve Overwatch after Winston reinstated the organization. At the time, she was in King's Row, London, awaiting the ill-fated speech of Omnic monk Tekhartha Mondatta. She was the first to join after being contacted.
Winston was one of the test subjects on the Horizon Lunar Colony, a moon-based scientific project that oversaw the experimentation of genetically enhanced gorillas. Among the rest, he displayed an unusual level of rapid development, and so he was taken under the care of Dr. Harold Winston. Through him, he learned the ways of science and assisted with research, and having a deep admiration for Overwatch from witnessing their heroics from afar. Unfortunately, the other gorillas formed an uprising, killing all of the scientists including Dr. Winston. Not wishing to reside among the others, Winston built himself a makeshift rocket and escaped to Earth, where he joined Overwatch immediately. At some point, Winston defeated the second Doomfist in battle, and invented Tracer's chronal accelerator, forming their friendship.
When Overwatch disbanded, Winston continued to reside in Watchpoint: Gibraltar, where he worked on further inventions. All the while, he contemplated the idea of reinstating Overwatch, as he saw the worsening state the world was in, but was stopped at every turn by Athena, who reminded him of the illegal nature of it. After barely thwarting a Talon raid led by Reaper, who attempted to extract the data and kill all agents, he officially recalled all members of Overwatch to serve once again.
Now Winston serves as the de facto leader of the organization.
Gérard Lacroix hailed from France, and acted as the leader of the operations against terrorist organization Talon. Outside of that, he was the husband of Amélie Lacroix. Having thwarted them at every turn, Talon decided to take an alternative. They kidnapped Amélie, transformed her into the deadly and psychotic assassin Widowmaker, and had her kill him in his sleep. His death was one of the many factors in Overwatch's downfall, and Talon was able to wreak more havoc once he was gone. As far as we know, he's Killed Off for Real.
Military Agents and OthersMembers of Overwatch who serve as background characters, and mentioned-only characters affiliated with the organization.
Overwatch's AI system. It is unknown what happened to "her" in the immediate wake of Overwatch's disbanding. However, once Winston returns to Watchpoint: Gibraltar, Athena is seen up and running.