According to Activision Blizzard’s 2023 second-quarter financial results, things are not all sunshine and lollipops for the team-based shooter. Overwatch 2 saw a drop in play time and money spent on the game. Additionally, Overwatch League is set to lose more teams.
What has led to the drop in numbers on Overwatch 2? As always, there could be a multitude of reasons. The big one people will point to is the announcement of scaling back the PvE, which many saw as the sole reason for the sequel to exist. However, there are other factors as well. 2023 is filled with massive games including The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, Hogwarts Legacy, and Diablo IV. People are spending their time and money on these big releases.
It is also important to note that Overwatch 2: Invasion is set to come out next month, finally bringing story PvE content to the game, even if it’s not as big as originally promised. Regardless of the sour feelings towards that situation, we would be surprised if the community didn’t at least give those missions a try.
As for Overwatch League, this seems to be a situation that has been slowly unraveling for a while now. At the end of the current season, all team owners will decide whether they will continue to operate under an updated operating agreement. If they choose not to, each team that opts out will receive $6 million. Given how OWL, and esports in general, have been losing money over the last year, it is expected that just about every team owner will terminate their franchise.
Even though it appears Overwatch League is about to look very different in the future, the league commissioner, Sean Miller, said in an interview with The Verge that the company is dedicated to the pro scene. Of course, that also comes alongside the news that 50 Activision Blizzard Esports employees were laid off.