Not so long ago Blizzard announced the Overwatch league, a new addition to the world of competitive esports. In many ways, the league is set to change the way competitions are held, payments, and overall experience. Since everyone is excited about the new league, new speculations appear every day and some of them turn out to be true. After rumors about teams have emerged, Blizzard confirmed that team owners will have to make certain changes.
What’s it all about?
Blizzard has confirmed that all Overwatch league franchise buyers will have to change names of their teams and make them more specific for this particular game. The decision dictates that teams like Immortals, Cloud9, and NRG Esports that are well-known across different platforms and games will have to change their names. These brands amassed a large followers base and it will, certainly, be impractical for them to let it all go and use a different name or identity in the Overwatch league.
The Overwatch league is an entirely new esports endeavor and it combines brand new IP with a city-based team structure. In addition, the league features many other components that make it so different from any other league in the world of esports. That is, also, the reason why brands are required to change their names, at least that’s what Nate Nanzer the Overwatch league commissioner says.
Nanzer explains that team owners are enthusiastic to start this brand new league with a clean slate. They see it as an opportunity to develop their brand from the ground up in order to reflect the innovative attitude of the league itself.
Will the teams lose support?
Every team in the Overwatch league is required to create new geolocated brands, the first in esports to date, and business corporations that are specific to this particular league. Although the names of these teams are still unknown, there are some speculations that each confirmed party has created new business corporations to own the league spots.
Even though Nanzer announced all team owners are enthusiastic to start with a clean slate, it is highly unlikely that well-established teams with hordes of followers were excited about this decision. There is always a concern whether these teams will lose their support. When asked about this particular problem, Nanzer pointed to marketing support and sports ownership groups, explaining that those organizations already use the same resources for multiple brands.
Nanzer added nothing is preventing these famous teams from using their experience and resources to promote Overwatch league teams to their existing fan base. The same way a sports ownership groups can own different brands and use resources to promote them all, teams in different sports can use the same marketing to support both. For example, Cloud9 can still use their platform, marketing, and resources to promote their new Overwatch team with a different name. This will help these teams retain endemic fans while gaining new ones in Overwatch league.
With these new innovations in Overwatch league, Blizzard is trying to evolve into the force to be reckoned with in the esports world. As a reminder, they are still yet to find a long-lasting success comparable to that of Riot Games. Their most successful endeavor, Hearthstone, is gradually declining.
Blizzard announced that team brands will have to change their names in new Overwatch league. Many well-known teams need to drop their identity and create a new name specific to this league. That being said, they can use marketing and other resources to promote the new team and retain endemic fan base.
About the Author: Amna El Tawil is a news reporter and a technology blogger. For the past five years, she has worked for major publications and TV networks in the Middle East, covering one of region’s hotspots. When Amna is not chasing after the truth amidst gas canisters, she can be found cheering her favorite football team on, or unwinding with some online gaming.