/PROS REACT TO OVERWATCH HERO POOL SYSTEM REVEAL
Overwatch is set for a huge shakeup with the recent announcement of a hero pool system, and the pros are beginning to weigh in. The reactions are mixed for good reason — the OWL season is starting in a week and these changes begin in just about a month from now. Talk about timing.
What’s happening: Beginning March 7th, one support, one tank, and two damage heroes will be “disabled” every week. This is in an effort to keep the meta from getting stale; it’s typical to see similar comps from teams throughout the season, resulting in many mirror matches and fairly predictable gameplay. How hero pools will be chosen is still a bit murky, but the design team will be making the decisions based on gameplay the previous week in order to keep things fresh for the following week. Hero pools won’t be used in midseason tournaments, playoffs, play-ins, or the OWL grand finals. Also, locked heroes also can’t be disabled for consecutive weeks.
What the pros are saying: It might be good to see comps and strategies change week to week. Guangzhou Charge’s Alberto “neptuNo” González said on Twitter, “If hero pools forces teams to learn how to adapt faster and learn the game fundamentally…isn’t that a good thing?” Contrasting this opinion is Atlanta Reign’s Petja “Masaa” Kantanen: “Gonna be extremely interesting to watch all the cheese strats that will come with 1 week of prac for every match that most will be spent on travel.” It might not be feasible to expect top tier gameplay with consistent hero swapping and travel.
Chances of lasting: Jeff Kaplan admitted that there may be some flexibility to the hero pool system. If it needs tweaking, pools may change more slowly month-to-month instead of week-to-week, or they may go based on the map or per match only. We can only wait and see; OWL begins February 8th.
/INSIDE CALL OF DUTY LEAGUE LAUNCH
Activision Blizzard has a lot on their hands league-side, especially with the new Call of Duty League kicking off last week. Business Insider did a deep dive into the opening three-day event in Minnesota, providing a behind-the-scenes look at the league.
Forming a franchise: To buy in to the League, owners had to pay a sizable $25 million each. Twelve investors stepped up, creating teams to represent American, Canadian, and European cities. All twelve represented cities will host a league event during the eight month season. The Minnesota Rokkr, owned by the Minnesota Vikings and co-owned by media mogul Gary Vaynerchuk, were the first to host on January 24th ad the historic Armory in Minneapolis.
Player perks: Business Insider revealed details on player compensation. Each player in the league is given a $50,000 minimum salary along with health benefits, along with housing during the length of the season (eight months). Events like the one in Minnesota also provide amateur players a tournament to compete in, hopefully creating a healthy ecosystem for CoD players all around.
It will take another eight months to see if the CoD League can emulate some of the OWL’s successes and avoid some of its hurdles.
/ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CLASH OF CLANS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP 2020
Can’t put your phone down? Now there’s an even better reason to stay mobile with Clash of Clans. Supercell and ESL have released details about the World Championship 2020 and it looks to be a rich year with a total prize pool of $1,000,000 on the rack.
Teams will be able to qualify through monthly in-game clan war leagues and ESL Play Cups. The top eight teams (four from each method of qualification) will be able to play a monthly offline qualifier taking place in Katowice, Poland.
The first qualifiers are now underway, with the first offline event taking place March 27-29th. The sixth and final offline qualifier is set for August 24-26th, and the 2020 grand finals date will be announced soon. You don’t have that much time to perfect your clansmanship, so get started soon.
/NEW HEARTHSTONE META DECKS REVEALED BY LEAD DEV
August Dean Ayala, Blizzard senior game designer for Hearthstone, shirked the norm and released a personal meta update. The dev took the last week’s data and generated the top five decks within the highest population of the playerbase, and the top five decks overall with the highest win rates. Here they are:
Top 5 Population:
Top 5 Win-Rate:
You can get all the deck codes, dust cost, and win rates here. May the RNG gods be with you.
Clash: Riot Games improves Clash gameplay before official launch based on player feedback.
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