Loot boxes have been features in video games long before Overwatch was released. However, it was that game that popularized the feature in modern games, as other popular franchises followed suit. Loot boxes has since become a controversial topic and the practice criticized.
However, despite the financial of success of Overwatch owing to loot boxes, there is a possibility that the sequel, Overwatch 2, will abandon this mechanic overall. This has not been confirmed officially by Blizzard, however, so take it with a grain of salt.
The reasoning for the rumours of Overwatch 2 lacking loot boxes comes from German Overwatch Twitter account. Initially noticed by Dexerto, Overwatch 2 is rated 12 and older in Germany, while the first game is rated 16 and older.
Germany is currently in the process of passing the Youth Protection Act, which would force games with loot boxes to have a higher rating. This would certainly mean that if Overwatch 2 has loot boxes, then it would be rated at least the same as its predecessor.
We would like to reiterate that Blizzard has not made any statements regarding monetization in Overwatch 2 and that this is all speculation based on the tweet from Overwatch Germany.
If loot boxes are indeed ditched in the sequel, then one has to ask how it will be monetized. Hopefully, cosmetics in Overwatch 2 can still be unlocked by playing the game with microtransactions being optional, like in the first game, but with the randomness taken out of it.
Overwatch 2 is expected to release in 2022, so there is still quite some time before everyone will get the chance to play it. But Blizzard has been revealing more gameplay footage, especially the PvP side of the game, which has received significant changes from the current Overwatch meta.