What’s The Current State of China’s Overwatch Scene?
Posted 14th October 2018 By: Derpina    290 Views
Esports News – The Chinese competitive scene of the Overwatch League (OWL) looked promising in the latter half of 2017 and even in the last remaining stages of the inaugural season. The region introduced a handful of young talents and powerhouse teams that could challenge South Korea and North America; one example is the notorious Shanghai Dragons with a 0-40 record for the entire season. But aside from what the fans see inside the arena, what’s really happening behind the curtains and what can we expect from the region in the next season? This leads us to a more daunting question: What’s the current state of China’s OWL scene?
China’s self-contained system
According to Overwatch commentator James “Jamerson” Lee, the Chinese region sets itself apart from the others because of its “self-contained system”. It introduces a very different and diverse meta that’s like a breath of fresh air for other OWL users and fans; many Chinese players are keen on using heroes not commonly used by North Americans. From Jamerson’s perspective, he shared: “most of all, I loved the fact that I got to cast more Doomfist gameplay. Western and Korean teams hardly touched him, but [Chinese] players like S1mpfall, Eileen, and Leave quickly garnered my attention with their Doomfist play.”
Underdeveloped teams and organizations
Unfortunately, the talented teams and player in the Chinese competitive esports scene are not enough to completely introduce their region to the world. Adding to that was Shanghai Dragon’s disappointing grand finals in the first OWL season, an upsetting turn of events after they’ve won every single match in all stages. From what Jamerson can see, “the ecosystem for China wasn’t developed enough and the talent was too concentrated when the Overwatch League started up. The Chinese competitive scene had to essentially rebuild itself.”
Additionally, Alain Gai, a Chinese Contenders and Overwatch League caster, also stated that China’s OWL competitive scene is struggling to make a mark. But, remains optimistic about future improvements. He stated: “investors and managers of pro teams have adopted a more mature mindset, focusing more on long-term results. Chinese players are more open to global competition, and the fans have become more dedicated to their favorite players and teams.”
Despite the Shanghai Dragons failing to claim a significant place in the grand finals of the OWL, other local Chinese teams and players showed exemplary improvements over the first two seasons of Contenders China. Notable players such as main tank Qiulin “Guxue” Xu and flex DPS Shilong “Krystal” Cai began to attract global attention when they were selected for the national team.