Overwatch League’s Robert ‘Hexagrams’ Kirkbride has apologized for his August 15 cast of Shanghai Dragons vs London Spitfire. Fans expressed concern due to his “out-of-character” performance on the official YouTube broadcast.
The Dragons vs Spitfire may not have been the most noteworthy match of the weekend on the server. It was a quick 3-0 to the dominant Shanghai, with the once-cellar dwellers of the Overwatch League cementing themselves as 2020’s team to beat.
However, what happened on the cast caught people’s eye. Hexagrams was forced to step in for the APAC broadcast after Wolf Schroder had to go back to the States to finalize his Korean visa.
Sleep-deprived and coming off a long schedule, Hexagrams put together an “out-of-character” cast. The OWL veteran swore numerous times, neglected the league’s sponsors, and more. Fans initially thought he was “casting drunk.”
However, Hexagrams explained straight after the broadcast that he was put into a rough situation with his schedule. Coupled with insomnia and anxiety, Hexagrams’ “mental” broke.
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“Sometimes your mental breaks. Sometimes it’s been six months looking at the same walls and you have to take sleeping pills and work at 1am. Sometimes your mental breaks and that’s okay,” he tweeted directly after the broadcast.
Hey, sometimes your mental breaks. Sometimes it's been six months looking at the same walls and you have to take sleeping pills and work at 1am.
Sometimes your mental breaks and that's okay.
— hexagrams (@hexagrams) August 15, 2020
He apologized further a few days after the broadcast, saying that he wanted to clarify what happened that night.
“Obviously, I don’t like having to switch my sleep schedule. It’s hard to flip that switch and stay up, but I was excited to cast the games and work with Seth and Jack, I figured it’s just two nights then back to normal,” he said in an August 17 statement.
Hex reportedly couldn’t fall asleep ahead of the broadcast due to insomnia, leading him to be awake for 32 hours straight. He managed to get some sleep, but he said “my filters were off, my sharpness was not good, [and] it wasn’t the work I expected to put out.”
5700 words On Stress, Anxiety, Insomnia.
— hexagrams (@hexagrams) August 17, 2020
“I’ve made private apologies, but I do want to apologize to the teams, players, and fans. It was not the performance I wanted to put out there.”
The caster also noted that he had “very little solid memory of the cast itself.”
Hex has received wide-spread support from various members of the Overwatch League community, who said they were more “concerned” about a friend’s health than anything he did on broadcast.
“Some keep saying how I ‘looked pissed’ or was ‘subtlety throwing shade.’ I was more so concerned about a friend. Glad he’s feeling better now. That’s absolutely the most important thing,” co-caster Seth ‘Achilios’ King told fans.
Was waiting for Hex to speak before I said anything. Some keep saying how I "looked pissed" or was "subtlety throwing shade." I was more so concerned about a friend
Glad he's feeling better now; thats absolutely the most important thing. https://t.co/2JXETGZ1D9
— Seth King (@AchiliosCasts) August 15, 2020
The Overwatch League will return on August 21 for Week 29.