One of the most high profile Overwatch events so far, the Overwatch Open, organized by ELEAGUE, is set to take place soon. The groups were drawn recently, on air talent, which will try to take the viewers through the experience, was announced. All seems to be set for an exciting tournament, which will start on September 25th.
I will definitely talk about groups, but first, let’s talk about the people who are going to be bringing the matches to your home. You might be an experienced Overwatch player yourself, however, analysts are needed to explain what happened in the match to those who might not be as accomplished. To do that, ELEAGUE secured Rachel “Seltzer” Quirico to host the whole thing, while Andrew “ZP” Rush and Chris “HuK” Loranger analyze the matches. The game is new, there hasn’t been enough time for broadcasting superstars to be born, so most of the on air talent featured in this event will have come from other games, where they are usually much better known, as is the case with HuK, for example. When you start doing a new thing, in this case, analyzing a new game, some time to get into the groove and find your mojo should be allowed to people.
The same goes for live casters, Alex “Goldenboy” Mendez, Matt “Mr. X” Morello, Anders Blume, and Auguste “Semmler” Massonat. Casting is hard. Casting an emerging eSports title is harder. Don’t believe me? Try it yourself. The live casters do have a lot of experience in other titles, however, that might not entirely translate to Overwatch. Of course, that’s where true professionals rise to the occasion, researching as much as they can beforehand and letting their instincts take over in the moment. The casting in this tournament might not be perfect, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the best seen on Overwatch tournaments.
Now, let’s talk about the groups. The sixteen teams participating in this tournament have been split up into two regions, two groups for each. Essentially, that’s four groups with four teams each. Two teams out of each group will make it to the top 8. For your convenience, here are the groups, sorted by region.
Ninjas in Pyjamas
Obviously, the strongest team in North American Group A is the mostly European EnVyUs, with either Liquid or NRG contending for second place in my heart. In Group B, Cloud9 and Fnatic seem to be the strongest, especially due to my prejudices coming from League of Legends.
Over on the European side of the bracket, REUNITED is obviously the strongest team from Group A, with it being a little bit of a coin toss concerning who is going to take 2nd place, in my opinion. It could be any of the remaining 3 teams. Group B has two orgs which would normally be shoe-in by default in Rogue and Misfits, however, it’s hard to tell if Misfits can still come up with their past level of performance after their recent roster troubles. Even with that in mind, they do look to be stronger than ANOX and Luminosity in my mind, but they will have a harder time of it than they would have in the past.