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  • Writer's pictureWabba Plays

Overwatch League is dead. Long live Overwatch League.

The Overwatch League (OWL) that we know is dead. OWL was set up as a franchised league, with several cities fielding and singing players much like a traditional sports league, which started in 2018. The reason I loved it was because there was a local team here named the Boston Uprising, which was owned by the Kraft Group (yes, the owner of the patriots). They were an extremely strong team in the first seasons, and found a home at Gillette stadium with the support of the e-sports center, and they put on excellent live events during the big tournaments. You could buy player jerseys at the Patriots Pro Shop and meet players at regional events like PAX East.

However, with the pandemic impacting any type of live or organized events, as well as Overwatch 2 having a lukewarm reception, Overwatch League announced on January 23. 2023 that they were ending. It was a huge surprised to fans such as myself to see the Boston Uprising twitter post a goodbye video to their fans, and retweet a photo of @Overwatchleague being deleted on Twitter/X.

The league I loved was dead. Until about 5 minutes later where Overwatch announced the Overwatch Champion Series (OWCS) before OWL's corpse had even been put in the ground.

The OWCS is partnering with ESL Faceit Group for a multi-year partnership to create an open-circuit league that will have regional and international tournaments throughout the year. Any team now can participate and qualify, making this in my opinion, more of an "amateur" league. Sure, there will be big name e-sports teams with big sponsors, but now Billy Bungus and his 4 friends can also qualify and win. While I like that it involves more people, I will miss the branded Boston team, one that I felt I could root for like a sports fan for a city and game I loved.

I had a falling out with Overwatch after they introduced a battlepass and made some poor decisions, but I never stopped cheering for the Uprising. I would watch matches online, keep up with the roster, and I have plenty of Uprising merch.

But now, none of that matters.

I will miss the OWL for sure, but I will miss my home team the most.


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