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Overwatch League Is On, And Is Latest Signal Of Esports Boom

12 Janvier 2018

The constantly evolving realm of eSports is taking another big leap forward this week with the January 10 launch of Blizzard Entertainment Inc.'s seven-month long Overwatch League.

And, just like traditional sports, fans can watch live broadcasts of every game - in a variety of languages - via the Overwatch League website, official app, or on Twitch.

The first day of the inaugural season held steady viewership numbers that towered above other popular games on Twitch such as League of Legends and Playerunknown's Battlegrounds.

According to Game Rant, obtaining the League skins in Overwatch isn't as simple as opening a loot box. While your first skin is free if you sign into the game by February 13th, any following skins will cost 100 League Tokens. Losing players and teams are often given the chance to reject interviews in esports, but Blizzard treated their competitors like any other athlete in the National Basketball Association or NFL.

The team is made up of relatively unknown Chinese players who have done well on the regional ladder, but are inexperienced on the professional stage.

The patch highlight, however, is the new Overwatch League Team skins. "With 12 first-class teams representing major cities from Asia, Europe, and North America, we're confident that the inaugural season of the league is going to redefine what people expect from esports-and be a giant celebration of the Overwatch community as a whole". Overwatch's developer, Blizzard Entertainment, in the fall of '16 announced plans for a league "backed by deep-pocketed investors" including Rams Owner Stan Kroenke and Patriots Owner Robert Kraft.

Seoul Dynasty are considered the best team in the league at the moment, but it's encouraging that a western team can take them close to the edge. When the Dynasty finally overcame the Fuel, the crowd showed appreciation for both teams, the South Koreans narrowly escaping with a tightrope victory in its debut. Since the very beginning, Blizzard has touted Overwatch as a game of inclusivity and diversity, with a selection of characters that includes everything from multiple women of colour to a moon ape.

Each match will contain four games, one for each of the different maps that are featured in Overwatch. For its league to succeed, it will need to convince those gamers and beyond to watch others play. The GRTV team are in LA reporting on the event, and during their adventures, they captured press conference footage of five of the six teams involved in the first day's action.

Overwatch League Is On, And Is Latest Signal Of Esports Boom