We’re keeping you updated on what’s been going on in the exciting world of eSports over the last few weeks.
Overwatch League expands to new cities
Activision Blizzard recently added six new teams to Overwatch League, including one in Paris, as the city-based approach to eSports headed into its second season. In July, the league filled a stadium during championships that saw matches broadcast on Disney and its ESPN channels in the US, a real testament to its success. New teams in Chengdu, Hangzhou, Paris, Toronto, Vancouver and Washington DC for the 2019 season bring the total number in the Overwatch League to 20.
Since its original launch back in January, the Overwatch League has developed its own top players and a strong fanbase that follows the tournament either virtually or in person at live events. The competition comprises franchises representing cities on three continents.
The league's models are the major US professional sports organisations such as the National Football League (NFL) and the National Basketball Association (NBA). The long-term goal of Overwatch League is to become a true global competition, increasing to 28 teams and featuring regular matches between players on opposite sides of the world.
IOC says that eSports are “too violent” for the Olympics
The ongoing debate about violence in video games seems to be the biggest obstruction in bringing eSports to the Olympics.
In a recent interview with the Associated Press at the Asian Games, where eSports was held as an exhibition event, International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach shot down any hopes of bringing eSports to the Olympics by stating that it was “too violent”.
Many fans think Bach is in the wrong here and grouping together a whole range of eSports tournaments without considering that not all of them are violent, such as League of Legends.
Sauber Esports drivers seek revenge after 2017 disappointment
Sauber Formula 1 Esports drivers Salih Saltunc and Allert van der Wal have stated that they want to take revenge in this year's official F1 series after they experienced a disappointing 2017.
Reigning Apex Online Racing Xbox champion Saltunc had a disappointing F1 eSports campaign, after failing to score in the first two races at the grand final in Abu Dhabi. He ended up coming in 10th place in the final double-points race, ranking him 12th out of a total of 20 drivers.
Sauber picked Salih in July's Pro Draft along with two fellow 2017 finalists – his brother Sonuc and Dutchman Allert van der Wal. Van der Wal was also frustrated to only finish last year's competition in seventh, as he believed he had the speed to take fourth place behind champion Brendon Leigh, Fabrizio Donoso Delgado and Sven Zurner.
Formula 1's 2018 eSports season continues next month.