xQc blindsided by shock departure of his pro Overwatch team

Published: 5/Dec/2019 6:04 Updated: 8/Dec/2019 18:59

by Andrew Amos


Former professional Overwatch player turned streamer Felix ‘xQc’ Lengyel was blindsided on stream by the shock announcement by his Overwatch Contenders team, Gladiators Legion, stating the team would not be competing in 2020.

xQc’s beginnings in the esports and streaming space were through his endeavors in professional Overwatch. He has participated in the Overwatch World Cup multiple times representing Canada, and even played in the Overwatch League.

He’s toned back his playing commitments in recent months, but he was still on the Los Angeles Gladiators academy team, Gladiators Legion, for the 2019 season. 

However, he was dropped from the team in surprising fashion, with the team posting their departure from Overwatch Contenders on Twitter, without notifying him.

Robert Paul for Blizzard EntertainmentxQc has been involved in professional Overwatch for quite some time.

After checking out Reddit nearing the end of his December 4 stream, the French-Canadian streamer’s attention was drawn to a post on /r/competitiveoverwatch, highlighting the end of Gladiators Legion.

“What does that mean,” he asked his chat, wrapping his head around the decision. “Does that mean I lose my job? Did I just get fired?”

xQc was a substitute for Gladiators Legion in 2019, after being removed from the Overwatch League in 2018 by Dallas Fuel. He was then picked up by the Sentinels-owned academy team, and streams under their banner, but had no knowledge of his pro team’s departure from the scene.

While his substitute spot on the Overwatch Contenders team is unlikely to be xQc’s big money-maker, he was still invested in the team. Even if he wasn’t on the starting roster, finding out over Twitter shocked the streamer.

“Okay, well, that happened I guess,” he said. “I didn’t even know. I hadn’t been told, I could have prepared for this in some way or another, f*ck man.”

There are a number of factors behind the decision to cut the Gladiators academy team. Whether it was expenditure-wise, or the restructuring of Contenders, it’s unlikely people will ever know the full reason. xQc doesn’t want to blame the people behind the academy team though, saying it could have been out of their hands.

“I don’t want to blame them though — maybe they didn’t know themselves and it was a late decision,” he said.

The Gladiators Legion are the fourth Overwatch League academy team to pull out of Overwatch Contenders in 2019. NRG Esports, the San Francisco Shock academy team, pulled out in early 2019, with Mayhem Academy getting dropped shortly after. 

XL2 Academy, run by the New York Excelsior, also departed the space at the end of the 2019 season. Both XL2 Academy and the Gladiators Legion made the Overwatch Contenders global finals, also known as the Gauntlet, in October of this year. 

All players from the Gladiators Legion have become free agents in light of the decision, except for xQc, who is undecided on whether he wants to return to competitive Overwatch or not.


Platinum Overwatch player discovers how to queue against Top 500

Published: 24/Jan/2021 22:51

by Bill Cooney


Overwatch’s Competitive system can be a wild place to begin with, but going up against a Top 500 player while ranked Platinum just seems unfair. However, it isn’t quite the lopsided matchup it seems.

The Overwatch Competitive ladder is a brutal environment, where dreams of Diamond and Masters go to die in Silver and Gold. Platinum, really, is the middle of the road as far as rankings are concerned.

Queueing up against Gold or Diamond ranks isn’t unheard of in Plat at all, but seeing a Top 500 player on the opposing team is certainly jarring, to say the least, which is just the situation player u/Ximply found themselves in during an Open Queue match.

Not the sight you want to see in a Comp match.

Not to mention the Top 500 player, but you’ve also got a couple of golds thrown in there as well, so what the heck is really going on here?

The answer, is actually as simple as the game mode this player was in when it happened: Open Queue. The fact is there are fewer people playing this mode than Competitive Role Lock, so getting the Top 500 Icon is much, much easier.

Top 500 isn’t a rank itself, it just indicates the Top 500 players of a season, and since the player pool for Open Queue is relatively small, you could be a Diamond or high Plat and still make the cut.

Torbjorn is angry
Blizzard Entertainment
Top 500 is seen as being the ultimate sign of your Overwatch prowess, but it’s not as hard to achieve in Open Competitive.

If you’ve ever wanted to get the exclusive Top 500 season icon or spray, giving Open Queue a try instead of banging your head repeatedly against the wall in the vastly more populated Role Queue option.

So, while they did technically have a Top 500 player in their match, it was Open Queue, so chances are, looking at the rest of the ranks, this player’s actual SR wouldn’t have been too much higher than their own.