Something that has been a long time coming to the Overwatch scene is the introduction of Blizzard's competitive Overwatch League, which would allow teams of players to complete against one another and begin making a name for themselves in the team-based FPS scene. Unfortunately for the developer, the feature's launch isn't going so smoothly and there's a lot of rumors surrounding exactly why - something that Blizzard isn't too pleased about.
In the past couple of weeks, five different Overwatch teams have been dropped by their respective eSports organizations. According to recent leaks, the reason that companies are so determined to drop their newly-formed players is mainly due to a huge $20 million franchise fee that the competitors must pay if they want in.
For reference, buying into the League of Legends League Champion Series reportedly cost around $1.8 million, and the MOBA is a much larger-scale and more well-established brand. Further leaked details claim that the organizations that get involved in the Overwatch League aren't guaranteed revenue sharing until 2021. Considering that the game is only coming up to one year old, many companies are sure to be hesitant when it comes to getting involved, if these rumors hold any traction.
As a response to these recent allegations, Blizzard has released a statement that refutes the leaks, albeit without singling any of them out in particular. Talking to Kotaku, the company stated that its ultimate goal is to create an exciting Overwatch eSports ecosystem. The developer wants its plans to be "accessible to a wide audience, sustainable, and rewarding for everyone involved."
"We’re doing our best to take great care with building this ecosystem, and as with much of what we do, we don’t release information until we’re at a place where it makes sense to do so," stated the Overwatch creator. "Anyone who knows Blizzard understands how deeply we care about the communities around our games."
The company seem to believe that any rumors surrounding its newly-formed league are originating from certain parties that could be spreading this misinformation in order to leverage themselves a better position in negotiations. Right now, there's very little that we can say for certain, and we'll have to wait until the Overwatch League officially launches to find out more.
Overwatch is available now for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.