Fans Flabbergasted as China Bans Overwatch 2 Pushing Their Esports Teams Into a Pit

Published 01/24/2023, 9:00 AM EST

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Overwatch 2 is banned in China, and fans are worried about the future of their esports teams. 

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After NetEase, Blizzard has found itself in troubled waters as China shut down its access to Overwatch 2. Apparently, the company could not keep up with its agreement license, leading to this massive mishap. Plus, this has brought a lot of pressure on the Chinese Esports teams, as they would no longer have access to the game. 

This has raised questions in the Overwatch community as there is no clear picture of the game’s return. And with the OWL happening soon, fans are worried about the country’s participation. 

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The Chengdu Hunters were the first to break the news as they added a fresh post on their Twitter account. It was one of the disastrous moments for them, as they had to call quits on something they loved the most. 

OverWatch 2 players in China bid farewell to the game after their country sends out massive ban 

On January 23, 2023, Chengdu Hunters uploaded a tweet confirming the ban of Overwatch 2 in China. At first, it was a little hard to believe as multiple teams represented their country in OWL, so it was a big decision. 

Overwatch 2 Developers Tease a ‘Fresh’ Reward Feature in Season 2 of the Hero Shooter

But considering the popularity of CH, it felt real. Here’s what they said, “Goodbye and see you again. Overwatch 2 has been shut down in mainland China.” The news not only affected the player base but also multiple organizations as they had to sail through a deadly storm. 

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After all, teams like the Hunters, the Guangzhou Charge, the Hangzhou Spark, the Shanghai Dragons, and the Los Angeles Valiant had no place to go. However, Blizzard announced it in November 2022, allowing fans to gear up for this day. But still, it was a major blow as they closed the game ‘one last time.’

via Imago

As of now, China has banned multiple Blizzard and NetEase titles due to the failure of signing a new license agreement. So, World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, Warcraft III: Reforged, Overwatch 2, the StarCraft series, Diablo III, and Heroes of the Storm Chinese fans will have to go through a tough time. 

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All in all, it is unclear whether the Esports teams will set up a base outside of China and continue to follow their dream. I mean, there might be a possibility that the government adheres to their requests and helps them out. But well, that’s for speculation, as it is too good to be true.  

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Written by:

Atharv Phadke

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Atharv is an eSports writer at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Journalism from Mumbai University, Atharv has a keen eye for writing engaging content. He enjoys all kinds of games but thoroughly follows FPS games such as Call of Duty, Apex Legends and Fortnite.
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Edited by:

Gideon Mathson

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