Did you miss GamesBeat Summit 2021? Watch on-demand here!
Overwatch League is Blizzard’s big esports initiative for its popular team-based shooter. It takes a page from traditional sports by having teams based in cities, such as Seoul, Dallas, Boston, and London. Overwatch League’s first week, which took place at the start of the year, drew 10 million viewers. Blizzard has noted that viewership has grown from there.
So far, Overwatch League has stuck with streaming services and sites like Twitch and MLG. Expanding to traditional TV could help expand its audience. The multiyear broadcast deal starts with Overwatch League playoffs, which start today. The deal also includes this fall’s finals and next year’s Overwatch League Season 2.
We’ve seen Overwatch esports on TV before, but this is the first time Overwatch League will be on TV. Blizzard has shown other esports competition on channels like ESPN and ESPN 2 before, including tournaments for StarCraft 2 and Heroes of the Storm.
Overwatch launched in May 2016 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. It has reached over 40 million players. Overwatch League competitors use the PC version.
GamesBeatGamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. How will you do that? Membership includes access to:
- Newsletters, such as DeanBeat
- The wonderful, educational, and fun speakers at our events
- Networking opportunities
- Special members-only interviews, chats, and "open office" events with GamesBeat staff
- Chatting with community members, GamesBeat staff, and other guests in our Discord
- And maybe even a fun prize or two
- Introductions to like-minded parties