Overwatch

OWL pro vanished during off-season to live in forest with grandmother

by Bill Cooney
Robert Paul/OWL

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The Overwatch League has become infamous for its apparent high retirement rate among players, but the story of why Swedish DPS Simon 'snillo' Ekström didn’t return to play at the beginning of Season 2 is one of the strangest we’ve ever heard.

Snillo was one of the original DPS players signed to the Philadelphia Fusion in 2017, but he didn’t make his debut until about halfway through the Inaugural Season.

With the start of the 2019 season, the Swedish Tracer star was given a two-way contract between Philadelphia and their Contender’s team Fusion University (now known as T1) where he spent most of his time playing in 2019.

Robert Paul/OWL
Snillo was a critical part of the Fusion's DPS in Season One.

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Exactly why the Fusion sent snillo down to Contenders before ultimately releasing him in December 2019 was unknown, until his former Fusion teammate Elijah 'Elk' Gallagher retold the story of what happened to him during the offseason.

Elk told the other participants and viewers of Contenders caster Connor 'Avast' Prince's stream that snillo had supposedly gone MIA for several months living in a cabin in the woods collecting mushrooms.

"For Season 2 of the Overwatch League, when I got to the team house I asked where snillo was because he wasn't there," Elk told Avast.

"I was told they couldn't contact him for four months during the offseason, and when he finally shows up he said he was living in the forest in Sweden with his grandmother foresting in the woods for mushrooms."

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Now we don't know for sure if snillo's four-month woodland adventure cost him a starting spot on the Fusion, but it would be pretty tough to keep up to shape on your Overwatch skills living in a cabin in the woods and apparently no contact with the outside world.

As to where snillo is now after being released by the Fusion, Elk said he had no idea but suggested he could be back in the forest.

"So you're telling me that in between him being an esports player he goes and performs a Germanic fairy tale in the forest," Avast said, amazed at what he was hearing from Elk.

Snillo apparently told a member of the Fusion staff he was going to go to the woods as well in 2018, but whether or not they took him seriously at the time is unknown.

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The Overwatch League has become infamous for it's high rate of player burnout and retirements, but a player choosing to go live in the woods cut off from the outside world during the offseason is definitely a new one.