From the tepid beginnings of the Overwatch League pre-season to selling out the Barclays Center in New York for the finals, the grand experiment that is the Overwatch League has completed its inaugural year with great success.
While the Overwatch League can be praised for leading the charge in the evolution of the esports industry and the many strides made in the first season, there are aspects of the league that have been sources of criticism and backlash from the community.
With that, let’s take a bit of a closer look at how Blizzard and the Overwatch League handled their first year: where they can improve and where they hit it out of the metaphorical park.
Presentation & Viewership - A
When it comes to putting on a show, Blizzard knows what they’re doing. Whether it’s BlizzCon, WCS, or OWL, one will never be disappointed by what they do. The production team regularly puts in the extra effort that sets Blizzard events apart from other gaming events.
In the past few years, the only event that may have rivaled Blizzard’s overall production value is Worlds 2017 for League of Legends in China. It’s hard to match having an Elder Dragon fly through a world-renowned Olympic arena, though.
By bringing in 80,000 to 170,000 concurrent viewers, the Overwatch League may not have broken any records, but they have managed to prove that they have a good product that can be scaled into a healthy esports league for years to come.