Esports is no longer sports just in name. Professional sports organizations and even schools are taking this highly competitive and lucrative market quite seriously. But not all of us can be players. Some are content just being spectators, though most probably wish they could fly around the map like those pro commentators. Well soon they can, at least as far as Overwatch is concerned. In time for the upcoming Blizzcon, Blizzard will launch a bets Viewer mode that will turn spectators into silent commentators and witnesses.
The Overwatch World Cup is serious business for everyone in the franchise, from the organizers to the players to the sponsors all the say down to viewers. That last group, however, are left to simply consume what’s given them. They see only where the camera goes, as dictated by esports broadcasters and reporters.
Game Director Jeff Kaplan wants fans to know that things are changing and heating up over at Overwatch HQ. Before Blizzcon even starts, they will be rolling out a beta version of the Overwatch World Cup Viewer feature from the Battle.net client. This would allow viewers to watch the upcoming semi-finals and final World Cup Matches in real time from whatever view they want. They can go third person, first person, or free camera and focus on the part of the action that matters to them.
More than just watching live matches, the Viewer will later allow players to replay the matches and even control camera speeds. This would allow all sorts of Overwatch fans to review and even scrutinize every aspect of that match. For learning or maybe even for contesting.
The beta version of the Overwatch World Cup Viewer will only be available for PC players because of the Battle.net requirement. Blizzard, however, plans on using that beta testing to hone the feature and hopefully make it available for all, even on consoles. The power and flexibility could turn the Viewer into more than just a viewer but also a teacher and maybe even an arbiter.