Overwatch League is taking some important steps this week to ensure that it has parity between its teams in cities around the world.
The esports organization, which Blizzard owns and operates, posted a letter from commissioner Nate Nanzer today that details how the company is planning to reveal scouting information about some of the best Overwatch players to the league’s teams. Blizzard already has data on how many people are playing the game from the last couple of ranked seasons as well as other pro events, and the publisher has sent out a survey asking players if they consent to inclusion in the scouting report. Blizzard and Overwatch League are doing this to ensure that teams can make smart choices when building out their squads. This could keep tournaments close, which would make for a more compelling overall product.
“The survey asked players to declare their interest in participating in the Overwatch League,” reads Nanzer’s letter. “If they were interested, the survey also asked them about their experiences and preferences and to grant permission to the Overwatch League to share their information with team owners.”
Overwatch League chose players for the survey based on predetermined set of criteria. The organization reached out to players that finished in the top 500, based on Skill Rating, in seasons 3 or 4 of the shooter’s competitive play mode. It also sent the survey to players who performed well in recent tournaments like APEX or the Premier Series.
The final scouting report will look like a combine for a traditional sport, which puts athletes through a variety of tests to determine how they compare to each other.
“In gathering and organizing this data, our intent is to provide teams with a useful tool to support a roster-building strategy,” wrote Nanzer. “We are not saying that this information should override other important factors. Statistics, as we know, are only one piece of the puzzle in determining what makes an Overwatch player great, but we wanted to ensure that every great Overwatch player is presented to team owners on a level, transparent playing field for consideration.”