Overwatch pro players will be earning $50,000 per year

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,854   +744
Staff member

Blizzard designed Overwatch with esports in mind, despite what some players may argue. The game has spawned teams competing in organized tournament play, but Blizzard envisions something more. It wants something akin to the NBA or NFL. At BlizzCon 2016, the company announced its plans of starting an organized Overwatch League (OWL).

As part of any large, organized league, the base requirement is highly skilled and well-paid players. To this end, Activision Blizzard has announced that OWL players will be guaranteed a minimum salary of $50,000 per year plus bonuses and benefits. Signed players will be on one-year contracts, and teams will be required to provide health insurance and retirement benefits.

Additionally, teams are mandated to share 50 percent of tournament bonuses with the team members. This extra incentive can play out to a nice chunk of change since there will be a total of $3.5 million in purse monies in the first season with one million of that going to the league champions. Teams must be between 6-12 players. So even with the maximum of 12 players, bonuses alone could equate to as much as $83,000 just in the first year.

So far seven teams have been franchised including teams owned by Robert Kraft chairman and CEO of the Kraft Group and the New England Patriots, and Jeff Wilpon, co-founder and Partner of Sterling.VC and COO of the New York Mets. Most of the teams are US-based, but Shanghai, China, and Seoul, South Korea will also represent. Already established Overwatch teams Immortals and Misfits Gaming have also bought seats in the league. Blizzard says that more teams are forthcoming.

Teams will start signing players on August 1, and team establishment should conclude by October 30. During this time owners will be allowed to negotiate contracts with players as long as they meet the minimum specifications. This initial signing period will be unique in that it establishes the league. “In future seasons, the pre-season player signing process will be updated to serve the needs of an established league, its teams, players, and fans,” noted Blizzard. In other words, it will function just like any other professional sports league. League play is expected to start before the end of the year.

The $50,000 starting salary is not as much as some professional League of Legends players make, but it’s not a bad wage for someone looking to play games for a living. Plus as the OWL grows, so will the salaries and bonuses. As it goes with sports economics, as the league grows, so does the purse.

Permalink to story.

 

Burty117

Posts: 4,040   +2,017
Pro-scene 30hz tick rate.
Pretty certain on the PC version (which is what they'll be playing on) it's 60Hz. Even then though, not sure that's high enough.

EDIT:
The new Overwatch PC tick rate is 63hz, confirmed, and according to knowledgeable YouTube channel Battle(non)sense, makes Overwatch even more responsive than CS:GO and Battlefield 4, which were the existing high watermarks. "Right now Overwatch has the least online network lag that I've ever measured in a 60hz tick rate multiplayer game," Chris from Battle(non)sense said in his video, embedded below.
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,288
50 grand is nothing really to write home about these days but it's certainly not bad for some zitty faced adolescent with a prison pallor skin... and it'll certainly buy a helluva lot of pizza's and fizzy carbonated drinks.
 

Adhmuz

Posts: 2,103   +906
Much like physical professional sports, the appeal dies off very quickly watching any of these e-sport events. Glad to see the step in a direction that brings it to a level where people can sustain themselves, provides them with benefits ect. However a 1 year contract is a short time to be making money if you don't get resigned at the end of that contract, still better than nothing.
 

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,854   +744
Staff member
Virtus Pro CSGO team earns 25k per month.
50 grand is nothing really to write home about these days but it's certainly not bad for some zitty faced adolescent with a prison pallor skin... and it'll certainly buy a helluva lot of pizza's and fizzy carbonated drinks.
@Nobina, Yeah but they have to play CSGO. ;)

@Skidmarksdeluxe, I don't know where you are living (New York maybe?), but where I live $50K per year, plus bonuses (that give it a potential of $123K - $217K)), plus health, plus retirement is a pretty damn good starting salary.
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,288
@Nobina, Yeah but they have to play CSGO. ;)

@Skidmarksdeluxe, I don't know where you are living (New York maybe?), but where I live $50K per year, plus bonuses (that give it a potential of $123K - $217K)), plus health, plus retirement is a pretty damn good starting salary.
Like I said, for a youngster, it is damn good, too good in fact. I wish I started out earning money equivalent of 50K today but that would've been just a pipedream. I started out making a living in the 70's by "legally" shooting people and having them trying to shoot me and no, I wasn't playing a 1st person shooter at 60fps, I was in a real, all out frontline war as an infantryman. I wouldn't have had the luxury and good fortune of respawning had I got drilled. Thankfully I wasn't and things steadily got better when I was demobbed. One good thing came out of it though, I got my engineering degree at the states expense. I live in South Africa btw and was fighting in the apartheid war.
 

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,854   +744
Staff member
Like I said, for a youngster, it is damn good, too good in fact. I wish I started out earning money equivalent of 50K today but that would've been just a pipedream. I started out making a living in the 70's by "legally" shooting people and having them trying to shoot me and no, I wasn't playing a 1st person shooter at 60fps, I was in a real, all out frontline war as an infantryman. I wouldn't have had the luxury and good fortune of respawning had I got drilled. Thankfully I wasn't and things steadily got better when I was demobbed. One good thing came out of it though, I got my engineering degree at the states expense. I live in South Africa btw and was fighting in the apartheid war.
Respect!
 

mrjgriffin

Posts: 349   +162
50 grand is nothing really to write home about these days but it's certainly not bad for some zitty faced adolescent with a prison pallor skin... and it'll certainly buy a helluva lot of pizza's and fizzy carbonated drinks.
I don't even make 50k a year......
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,288
I don't even make 50k a year......
Sadly not everyone does. It's the way of the world but you're probably a lot better off than billions of other unfortunate souls on the planet. Money is nice but it's not everything. You've also probably heard that a million times before but it is true.