Sep 26 2016 - 6:59 pm

Cloud9, NRG survive shaky group stage, advance to Overwatch Open semifinals

The group stage for North America is over at the Overwatch Open at the ELEAGUE studio in Atlanta, and while favorites Cloud9 and NRG eSports managed to survive, it wasn’t easy for either team
Samuel Lingle
Dot Esports

The group stage for North America is over at the Overwatch Open at the ELEAGUE studio in Atlanta, and while favorites Cloud9 and NRG eSports managed to survive, it wasn’t easy for either team.

Both teams suffered upset losses in the group stage, with NRG losing 2-0 to Team Liquid and Cloud9 falling 2-1 to Method. Today, both teams got their chance at revenge in group stage deciders. The winners advanced to today’s semifinals, playing against group stage winners EnVyUs and Fnatic. And this time, the results were different.

NRG eSports opened the day by beating Team Liquid 2-1 to advance into the semifinals against Fnatic. Then Cloud9 managed to top Method in another 2-1 series. Method stole a match on Anubis thanks to the same clutch play they’ve shown on Control maps through the event, but Cloud9 proved the more resilient team on payload when they closed out the match on Hollywood.

The NA half of the Overwatch Open will complete today after three best-of-five elimination series, the last team standing earning a timeslot on prime time television on TBS on Sept. 30.

Cloud9 is currently battling EnVyUs, the favorites to win the NA region, aired live on Twitch.

Today - 5:25 pm

A report feature is coming to Overwatch on console—but Blizzard won’t say when

The developer is also considering a console-only hero adjustment.
Nicole Carpenter
Dot Esports
Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Console Overwatch players haven't yet been able to report toxic players they come across in game, but developer Blizzard Entertainment is trying to change that.

Though there is no real estimation on when it will arrive, a reporting feature will come to Xbox One and PlayStation 4, according to Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan. "My hope is that everything locks into place before summer... or sooner," Kaplan said in a post on the Overwatch forum.

"But we're at the mercy of things beyond our control on this one and we've been working super hard to make it happen," he added. With the number of players exploiting Overwatch on PC, it's likely there are similar griefers and cheaters on console. Blizzard has already issued thousands of bans for PC Overwatch players caught cheating, and they're likely as eager to issue console bans as players are ready to see the feature implemented.

In the same post, Kaplan also addressed player complaints regarding defense heroes Torbjörn and Symmetra. The Blizzard Overwatch team have been watching these two heroes closely, Kaplan said. "Up until recently they were performing in lockstep with PC," he added. "Recently they've begun to diverge a little bit so we're taking a look at them now and we'll consider adjusting them."

Torbjörn was a major problem for console Overwatch players before Blizzard implemented the hero limit rule for quick play and competitive modes. In July, Blizzard nerfed both Torbjörn and Symmetra's turrets, reducing damage by 30 percent. Players have been begging for these changes to be reversed since they were released.

Lastly, Kaplan addressed the community's call for custom key bindings on console. Because console players don't have access to text chat like PC Overwatch players do, being able to callout with voicelines is especially important. Allowing for key binding on console will make it easier to communicate with teammates outside of voice chat. Kaplan promised that the Overwatch team will work on adding that feature.

Today - 4:16 pm

Funko Pop! releasing new wave of Overwatch toys

We're most excited about D.Va's tiny vinyl mech.
Nicole Carpenter
Dot Esports
Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Funko Pop! is extending its Overwatch toy lineup. Mei, McCree, Lúcio, Symmetra, Reinhardt, and D.Va were unveiled on Monday at the London Toy Fair.

Previously, only Tracer, Winston, Soldier: 76, Widowmaker, Pharah, and Reaper were available as vinyl Funko Pop! toys. Mei, McCree, Lúcio, and Symmetra will likely stand around 3 3/4 inches tall—standard for Funko Pop! toys—with D.Va in her mech and Reinhardt hitting the six inch mark. Funko is known for its adorable, stylized Pop! vinyl toys—big heads and extra large, round eyes—and these don't disappoint.

Image via Funko

From the photos on the Funko blog, it appears that each character will come with its own weapon. Mei's got her tiny blaster, McCree with his cigar and pistol, Lúcio has his sonic amplifier, while Reinhardt holds his giant hammer and Symmetra places her mini turret. D.Va, of course, gets her mech—but there's no bunny blaster in sight.

Neither Overwatch developer Blizzard Entertainment nor Funko have announced exactly when the toys will be released, except that they're expected in 2017. A tweet from the official Overwatch account suggests they'll be available on Blizzard's website.