Overwatch League is beginning later this year, and so Blizzard is gearing up with new information about the anticipated tournament despite the flack it got earlier on this year. It looks like the company has learned its mistake, as the new details are looking great.
Seven teams have been announced for the league, and now the player signings are supposed to take place. Players will be finalized on an Overwatch League team once they’ve signed an official contract—even players already on an established team. “Players associated with established Overwatch teams—even teams from organizations that have been announced as part of the Overwatch League—are not automatically signed to those rosters,” Blizzard said in a statement.
Season one signings begin August 1 and run through Oct. 30, before BlizzCon begins on Nov. 3. All announced League teams can sign players during that time. All signings will have to be approved by the Overwatch League, however. Players will likely be pulled from the scouting report created by Blizzard earlier in the year. According to Blizzard, all 30 million Overwatch players who are eligible are considered free agents heading into the first season. Of course, the majority of those players aren’t considered top-tier, so that plays a huge role in the selection process between them.
Those who are chosen to be on an Overwatch League team will have guaranteed support from the League and their organization. Blizzard is mandating a minimum player salary of $50,000 per year, as well as health insurance and a retirement savings plan. Teams will sign their players for one year contracts with the option to extend the contract for another year. Fifty percent of money from team performance bonuses like winning will go directly to the players. Total bonuses for Overwatch League teams in the first season will be $3.5 million, with a minimum of $1 million going to the season one champion, Blizzard said.
Up to 12 players can be signed to one Overwatch League team, with a minimum of six players, of course. There’s no region locking, so home country or birthplace won’t disqualify players from joining any team.
More information about the Overwatch League is expected to be announced relatively soon. Blizzard will also keep fans up-to-date with new team announcements, according to the press release. Overwatch League is expected to kick off later this year.