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Overwatch – Introduction to eSports betting

Overwatch is another work of art from the gaming producer Blizzard. Shortly after the release of this ego-shooter it was clear that Overwatch could become one of the most successful shooter-games in the world, behind Counter Strike and Call of Duty.

Initially Overwatch was criticised by many shooter fans, and dismissed as a "hopeless attempt" of Blizzard. However the game offered more than simply shooting, and soon sold millions of copies. Since then, Overwatch numbers amongst the games which hold the greatest appeal for bookmakers, and often is offered for betting.

How is Overwatch played?

The important thing about Overwatch is the different heroes. In Counter Strike and Call of Duty, one plays only on the side of a team. The shooter game developed by Blizzard Entertainment however, features different characters, which all have a variety of individual skills.

Before the game begins, you are allocated to a six-strong team, where players select their characters. This is also unique in ego shooter games. A support player exists that through their supportive skills is able be a positive influence on the entire team.

Different game modes also contribute to the popularity of this game. Assault is the classic mode, in which a team has to conquer or defend specific capture points across the map. This is the mode used in eSport tournaments.

The game mode Escort involves the transportation of a cargo (payload) through the map. Additionally, the game mode Assault –Escort (Hybrid) is also a common variant, which is a combination of the above mentioned Assault and Escort modes.

The Control game mode requires you to seize and occupy an area for a specific time. As in this mode games usually last only a few minutes, competitions are carries out in a Best of Three Mode.

General introduction to eSport betting with Overwatch

As already discussed, Overwatch is not a typical shooter game with the objective just to annihilate the opposite team. This fact should be kept in mind, if you intend to bet on this ingenious shooter game.

Overwatch received numerous accolades, and for this reason bookmakers took an immediate interest in the first tournament of this game.

Even before Overwatch was available to the public, tournaments were already being discussed. The first tournament took place took place at Gamescom in Cologne. Since then, further tournaments featuring the best and most well-known teams now feature in the portfolio of bookmakers, but more on that topic later.

Where can you place bets on Overwatch?

Since Overwatch is growing really rapidly, and professional clans are quickly trying to form teams, Blizzard is staging more tournaments, which in turn are offered by various bookmakers. To give you an insight of the bookmakers, we have chosen the top three sports betting portals who offer Overwatch betting and put them under the microscope.

  • Bet365 – Along with offering a large variety of other sports, this bookmaker has for quite a considerable amount of time now favoured eSport tournaments, offering these to their clients. The pre-match betting market, in other words the placing of bets before the game starts, is already available as soon as the tournament is announced. Bet365 also offers live betting, and this is exactly what makes the bookmaker so attractive. Bets can still be placed during the game, allowing you to react to the circumstances.
  • eGamingBets – this dedicated eSport bookmaker also offers betting on smaller and lesser known tournaments. Although eGamingbets is relatively unknown, its array of eSport games on offer is getting people talking.
  • Betway – Betway also goes out of its way to satisfy its customers and offers Overwatch parties. Additionally, the bookmaker continues developing in the right direction for the eSport market by offering sweepstakes and various bonuses for eSports.
  • Gg.bet – Since Overwatch is gaining in importance on the eSport scene, gg.bet who concentrate solely on eSport betting, absolutely needs to include it in their programme. Here there is a high possibility that you will find almost all tournaments with public interest, with corresponding betting opportunities

Other noteworthy bookmakers with good offerings are Bet at Home and Pinnacle. Here you will also be able to bet where applicable, on larger events. In fact, the odds offered by Pinnacle are well above average, and leave other providers in the shade.

When can one place Overwatch bets with a bookmaker?

Especially in focus are obviously the largest tournaments on the scene. However, also small tournaments taking place on the margins of an event, are more and more often finding their way into the portfolio of bookmakers.

To give you an overview of Overwatch tournaments, we have listed for you the most important:

  • Blizzcon World Championship – here the best teams are honoured and play for prestige and a large purse. Naturally all bookmakers have Blizzcon on the radar, as many varied events take place, thus many bets are placed.
  • Overwatch World Cup – A type of World Championship between different countries. The best players from a variety of countries come together and play for a free trip to Blizzcon.
  • Intel Extreme Masters – here Overwatch is also played. However, as it is not an official Blizzard tournament, not all teams are there, who for instance would be at the World Championships. Nevertheless, the IEM is popular with bookmakers and betting opportunities are available.

ESL tournaments or showdowns are not left out in the cold. The ESL is the world’s biggest player network and provides interesting tournaments and Leagues.

Which betting opportunities are available for Overwatch?

As with other ego-shooter games, Overwatch provides a solid framework of betting opportunities. As a lot can happen in one game, unusual bets are also offered, which can be hard to assess.

Along with winner-loser betting, the following betting possibilities are also available:

  • Map betting – targeted at a best of three/five/seven match on specific sections of the game. Because a team, depending on modus, has to win several rounds or maps, one can bet on specific maps
  • Over-under betting – here the bookmaker provides a certain prediction. The best and most popular example here is maps. Thus, in a best of five match, up to five games/maps can take place before the winner of the game is determined. The bookmaker predicts that at least four maps will get played. Now it is up to you, either you agree, or if you don’t have confidence that one of the teams will win a map. Thus, if you wish to bet that at least four maps will be played, one bets on the over option. However if you are certain that the favourite will win 3-0, so as that only three maps will be played, then an under-bet is the right choice.
  • Handicap bets – With this betting option, the favourite starts at a disadvantage, which for example can be the loss of a map. This disadvantage has to be made up and nullified, by winning the game. On the other hand, the outsider must use his advantage to cross the line first and win the game through the handicap bet.
  • Overall tournament winner –before the tournament starts, but also during its duration, a bet can be placed on the overall tournament winner.

What should one be aware of when betting on Overwatch?

Because a clan team consists of six players, one should be aware of any substitutions or changes to the players before a tournament begins. Additionally, one should always study the make-up of the team, and compare it to its opponent. A head to head comparison can also be instructive, and demonstrate that an outsider team could pose a real challenge to the favourite and score a win. As a tournament progresses you can come to view individual teams in a negative or positive light. Take special note of the group phases, and draw conclusions from that.

To conclude, a tip: Many of the bookmakers listed above offer a bonus for new customers, which you should consider as `training money´, as in the beginning you will not yet know your way around. The bonus enables you to try things out, experiment, as you become more proficient in placing your bets.

If you wish to watch the tournaments, in order to follow your bets, we recommend Twitch.tv – here you can watch the games play out live, and also pick up useful tips from the commentators and analysts who accompany the programme.

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