Is the OWL Overwatch giveaway a push to salvage player/viewership numbers?

Watching and engaging with the Overwatch League (OWL) can now earn you a free copy of Overwatch. In the next couple of weeks you can get you a free copy of the game, provided you’re in the right place at the right time.

OWL’s Boston Uprising jumped the gun with the offer earlier then most. The team’s website announced an offer for a free code three days ago. Wario64, the renowned deal-hunter caught the promotion and quickly shared it on Twitter. Within five minutes, all codes were gone.

This prompted the vice-president of the OWL, Jon Spector, to release a tweet confirming that it wasn’t just Boston Uprising going off on their own. The entire OWL lineup of franchised teams would be hosting giveaways soon.

Overwatch giveaway buildup

The Overwatch League channel had already been building up suspense with vague announcements for a while now. It seems Boston Uprising may have just jumped the gun and gone live sooner than they were supposed to. Fans didn’t mind, of course – free stuff is free stuff!

Now that the cat is out of the bag, we know you will be able to get your hands on free copies of the game as well as some Overwatch League Tokens. These tokens can be redeemed for limited in-game Overwatch skins, such as the newly released All-Star skins for characters Reinhardt and D.Va.

The teams will each be going live with their own promotions soon, offering both game copies and tokens. Exact times haven’t be announced, however the official Overwatch League channel recommends that you follow the teams on Twitter to make sure that you don’t miss anything important!

With limited quantities available, you can expect a huge run on each of the team’s respective giveaways. They’ll likely be centered around the All-Stars mid-season event that’ll happen in just a few days (October 3rd).

The Grand Finals aren’t far off either. You can certainly expect the entire giveaway period to last until the final conclusion of the 2020 Overwatch League Season.

Odd Timing

The Overwatch giveaway and this entire promotion are arriving at a very “odd” time. The game itself and the Overwatch League are not having a great year.

Recent info and analysis of viewer numbers have not been promising. The Overwatch League viewer numbers have plummeted this season. The reasons for this decay in viewership are multifaceted.

One can blame the move to Youtube and Blizzard’s exclusivity deals or the global pandemic and the uncertainty over competitive Overwatch or even, the fact that Overwatch is not as fun anymore and everyone has moved to Valorant. Additionally, Overwatch 2 was promised and we still don’t have any info or a release date to look forward to. Player numbers have also been in a steady decline week upon week.

When we add up all the metrics, Overwatch doesn’t seem to have a good outlook moving forward. The latest push to give away free keys and tokens looks like an attempt to salvage some viewer and player numbers. All of it is coming mere days ahead of the All-Star and OWL Grand Final, where the Overwatch folk will need to show some positive metrics to investors and their Activision overlords.

We do hope the giveaway boosts the numbers overall, and Overwatch gets a chance to restart and regrow once everything goes back to normal.

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