Overwatch League is finally here.
After months of fanfare and anticipation, Activision Blizzard Inc. (ATVI - Get Report) kicked off the first night of its inaugural season of the e-sports league Wednesday, Jan. 10, and the reaction was overwhelmingly positive.
Users on Twitter and Instagram documented their excitement watching the first matchups of the 12 teams vying for the champion title and $3.5 million in prize money and performance bonuses.
The launch of #OWL2018 today marks a historic moment in the history of esports, hopefully for all the right reasons. Best of luck to Blizzard, the players, teams, owners, casters, and the Overwatch community.— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) January 10, 2018
this blizzard production for #OWL2018 is great... I feel like I'm looking at the beginning stages of something that in a few years is going to be huge.. props to everyone involved!— timthetatman (@timthetatman) January 11, 2018
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Overwatch League's inaugural day was tons of fun. The third and final match of the night was incredibly epic and I could have not asked for a better way to end the night. ~~~ My favorite team: Dallas Fuel ���� (formerly known as EnvyUs. Considered the only true Tier 1 team in the West) against quite possibly the best team in the East: Seoul Dynasty ���� (formerly known as Lunatic Hai) was a nail biter. We gave em a good fight, but lost 1-2 �� Here's to more though #overwatchleague #burnblue #esports #pogchamp
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But there was one letdown a few social media users were quick to point out: Overwatch League's lack of female players.
The season will be broken into four stages, with each stage lasting five weeks. During each stage, teams from 12 regions split into two divisions compete in a series of rounds playing the Activision game "Overwatch." Matches will take place in the Burbank, Calif., arena that was built by Activision Blizzard.
Female top tier ow players exist. The field just isn't inclusive enough. More needs to be done. @Blizzard_Ent really needs to push for this if they really enjoy diversity as much as they claim. It's honestly a shame. #OWL2018— ��Mortemer�� (@Mort3mer) January 11, 2018
With merchandise for sale at the arena and tickets ranging from $20 to $30 (and the inaugural match a sellout), Activision Blizzard looks set to benefit from the Overwatch League already. Investors took a liking to the first day of competition, sending shares higher 2.12% to $68.25 in premarket trading on Thursday, Jan. 11.
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