Overwatch League – Spark Announces Unusual Partnership While Fuel Reaffirm Old Ones

Overwatch League – Spark Announces Unusual Partnership While Fuel Reaffirm Old Ones
Credit: PlayOverwatch via YouTube

Overwatch League isn’t going anywhere. It’s a wonderful marriage of bizarre choices in league governance juxtaposed with spectacular moments of gameplay and impressive skillsets coming from six-member teams that battle for dominance in a futuristic realm.

While some may be speculating about the popularity of the Overwatch League during a time of a pandemic that continues to put up less than stellar numbers in viewership on YouTube while other esports boast gaining popularity, multiple businesses find there’s more than enough reason to create and maintain partnerships with the league during this time.

First, Dallas Fuel has continued their partnership with Jack in the Box; a sponsor they’ve maintained since the inaugural season of the Overwatch League.

Some are pointing to this as being more location-based than merit, as the Fuel has struggled to keep talent on their bench after a bizarre first year that saw Brandon Larned riding the bench into obscurity while xQc was riddled with fines.

It’s difficult to look that the Dallas Fuel and point to performance at the moment and no one is entirely sure what is occurring behind the scenes, and who is to blame.

On the lighter side of it comes the Hangzhou Spark with a partner and honorary member, Misaka Mikoto from the anime A Certain Scientific Railgun T. This marks the first occurrence, possibly within esports as a whole, that an anime character becomes officially partnered with a team.

Misaka actually inspired the Spark logo, yet copyright infringement is rumored to be the basis of her not being present further in the modern setting of Overwatch League; this partnership could very well remove that limitation, however, and it seems that Misaka is in everyone’s near future as the Hangzhou Spark. Misaka is also now an honorary member of the team, and now occupies the #3 within the team.

Overwatch League is readying itself for the upcoming playoffs, and the semifinals are actually going to be international competitions on LAN; at least, that’s how it is currently planned, presuming that there are not further massive outbreaks of COVID-19 that will interrupt the admittedly difficult logistics necessary for the offline tourney to occur.

If successful, Overwatch League would be one of the first esports to successfully return to offline play (where latency and disconnects are no longer an issue), making their finals hold a promise of bringing true competitive play back to center stage, where it belongs.

Here’s hoping Blizzard manage to pull it off.