Overwatch gets a steady stream of updates, and before they release these patches onto the main game servers, they first test them in the Overwatch PTR server. These updates can be unstable, so sometimes when players try to connect to the Overwatch PTR game server, they get "Connection Failed" errors. The cause of these errors could be for a myriad of reasons, and this article will explain the best course of action for you to take if you get one of these errors when trying to connect to the Overwatch PTR server.
What is the Overwatch PTR server?
You could have played Overwatch since launch and still be unaware of the Overwatch PTR server. The Public Test Region server is where Blizzard pushes its latest updates to be stress-tested and checked for bugs before they push the patches to the live main game servers.
When joining the Overwatch Public Test Region server, a copy of your account is made that is separate from your account on Overwatch's primary servers. Any progression made on the PTR doesn't carry over to the main Overwatch servers, and loot boxes are not available for purchase.
Why would you want to play on the PTR then? A huge reason is that by playing on the PTR and reporting bugs, you help Blizzard ensure that quality of gameplay remains high on the main Overwatch servers. Additionally, you get to check out the latest additions to the game first, which is neat. However, the PTR can only hold 10,000 players at a time, so if more than that number try to join they're placed in a queue.
How Do I Fix Overwatch PTR Game Server Connection Failed Errors?
The Overwatch PTR game server can go down unexpectedly. However, more than likely it's not a problem on your end. Overwatch beta patches can cause unexpected behavior on the PTR servers and Blizzard may have to take down the servers for bug fixes unexpectedly.
Additionally, Blizzard may make changes to a new patch in the middle of PTR testing which might result for the Overwatch PTR servers being taken down suddenly. Also, the PTR servers aren't always available to play on. When Blizzard isn't beta testing a new update for Overwatch the PTR servers aren't active. Because there are no servers running to connect to, logically you get a connection error.
If you continue to have issues connecting to the Overwatch PTR servers and you are sure they should be running, try restarting your computer and router. If the problem persists, keep an eye out on Blizzard's Customer Support Twitter account and the Battle.net Overwatch Technical Support forum for more info on PTR outages.