Overwatch

Overwatch pro claims "everyone wants out" of the competitive scene

by Michael Gwilliam
Carlton Beener for Blizzard Entertainment

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Overwatch pro Seb ‘Numlocked’ Barton revealed some shocking information about the game’s future as an esport during an April 6 Twitch stream.

Barton, whose time in Contenders came to an abrupt end after the Montreal Rebellion dumped their roster on April 6, was asked about the status of Overwatch in general by a viewer.

While he could only go so far into detail, he didn’t paint a pretty picture about the future of the game, especially as many pros have already jumped ship to Riot Games’ Valorant.

Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
Numlocked briefly played in OWL in 2018.

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“I can’t give away too many details, but everyone wants out,” he stated. “Nobody is happy with what Blizzard is doing.”

This news didn’t just extend to Contenders either. As it turns out, even the top stars in Overwatch League are unhappy with the state of the game.

“People want to get out of Overwatch League,” the British main tank continued. “Obviously people are pulling out of Contenders. Montreal Rebellion was the first, but they definitely won’t be the last to pull out.”

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According to Barton, unless there are “big changes” things will only get worse from here on in.

The Montreal Rebellion’s former analyst Tanishq ‘Tanizhq’ Sabharwal echoed Barton’s statement but added his only vigor to the situation.

“I am moving to Valorant since OW Tier 2 is fully dead,” he said, but understood the decision by the team’s owner, OverActive Media, to drop the team. “Getting 1k viewers max on the Contenders stream isn't worth any level of investment.”

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In the lead up to Valorant, many Overwatch pros and streamers have abandoned the game to officially move onto Riot’s FPS.

Some of those names include former Apex Season 1 champion Timo ‘Taimou’ Kettunen, Brian ‘Kephrii’ St. Pierre and George ‘ShaDowBurn’ Gushcha.

With similar intensity to Sabharwal, Carter ‘Carter’ Smith announced he would be quitting once this season of Contenders ends.

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“Overwatch is f**king awful. It's a piece of s**t garbage f**king game that could've been the best,” he wrote in a TwitLonger. “It's not the best, and will never be the best, because Blizzard has no f**king idea how to maintain a game and they never have.”

While this Overwatch League season has been plagued by global issues, hero pools have upped the workload of teams. Washington Justice coach Seetoh 'JohnGalt' Jian Qing went on record saying he was losing sleep coming up with strategies as the meta is in a constant state of flux.

“When you have to present stuff to the players and build a strategy, it was very very tough for our coaching staff,” he said back in March.

Overwatch 2 still doesn’t have a release date and one has to wonder if it will be able to solve the issues that players, coaches, and teams face. Until then, the future of the game could be in serious jeopardy.