Resources / Esports News
Jan 10, 2018

Overwatch League rosters can have up to 12 players, yet only 6 play in any given match. This is a pretty serious change to the esports landscape, lending itself to next-level strategizing. Some teams might only have 6 versatile players on their roster. Other teams may opt for a full 12 man rosters with extreme specializations.

Imagine the Los Angeles Valiant showing up at an event with 12 players. First round, they face off against the Los Angeles Gladiators, a team that likes to run 3 DPS players (I completely made this up for the sake of illustration). LA Valiant decide to answer with a 2 tank lineup so they bench a guy that's usually in their starting 6 in favor of a player that's a stronger tank. This move secures the win.

Next round, they're up against the Houston Outlaws who are notorious for a dual healer combo (again, completely fabricated). The Valiant decide to scrap the 6 player lineup that won them the first round and bring in 2 new players who are dominant with Tracer and Sombra. RIP healer combo for the Outlaws.

OWL could even allow teams to take this to the next level by allowing player swaps between each map within a given series. That would be INTENSE.

Imagine this same roster concept applied to CS:GO, League of Legends, or Dota. In Dota, teams show up with 5 players and that's that. But what if they could travel with 6, 7, or 8 players? Imagine in their first round, they select a starting 5 who are great with pushing heroes because they know their opponent tends to be week against a deathball push strategy. Next round, they swap in 2 new players who are much better at taking advantage of created space to farm for a late game onslaught.

There could also be all sorts of twists implemented. Maybe the teams would be required to announce their 5 before hero picks. But what if they weren't? What if the team could draft their lineup THEN decide who would play? Yikes.

As fans, this would add a whole new level of excitement. And it'd also fuel us with unlimited material for our shit posts. Could you imagine the fodder for Reddit? We'd be second guessing roster decisions every single game.

I understand that with a change like this, there would be a fair amount of logistics and challenges for organizations. Their costs would skyrocket as they have to pay for salaries and accommodations for those extra players. Even though the Overwatch League rosters idea may be tough to implement into other games, it's worth a discussion.

kevinace
kevinace

Rivalry CMO and lover of all things esports. Thrilled to be a part of this growing industry!