Pay to play – mandatory pay and benefits for Overwatch League players

Some eSports players make a lucrative living for themselves.  Many more do not.  We therefore took great interest in the guaranteed pay and benefits announced recently by Activision Blizzard that Overwatch League players will be entitled to, as we had previously alluded to in our January insight brochure.

A player in the Overwatch League (which will initially be comprised of 7 teams) will be entitled to a minimum salary of $50,000 per year as well as health insurance and a retirement savings plan.  Teams must also distribute at least 50% of their team performance bonuses to their players directly.  Bonuses means winnings, and these are sizable – the first season’s bonuses is due to total $3.5 million.  On top of that, players must be guaranteed a year long contract (with the team having the option to extend for a further year) and provide player housing and practice facilities during the season which meet professional standards set by the Overwatch League.  Some real perks then for the successful few which would easily meet any minimum employment requirements for any future UK based players.

Blizzard’s announcement also included details on how players will be selected for the upcoming season.  Each of the 30 million plus Overwatch players of sufficient age to play will be considered free agents and could be recruited during the signing window (1 August to 30 October) if they are good enough.  Overwatch is a great game and we have a number of resident players within Wiggin, including an associate flouting his level 300 rank.  Maybe he has a shot at this?