The Overwatch World Cup Shanghai Qualifier took place last weekend, July 14 through July 16. Rogue, erm, “France”, were a guaranteed win from the start, and they didn’t disappoint, dropping only two out of twelve matches. China was the other team to qualify for advancement, going undefeated against Norway, Hong Kong and Romania. The good news for Overwatch esports was that this was a very high quality LAN tournament with a fair number of Twitch viewers (a bit over 80,000 on day one). The boring news is that this doesn’t have much to do with Overwatch League. Still, the Overwatch World Cup is a fun tournament with some money and bragging rights on the line. Let’s take a look some of the big plays in France vs. Argentina as the underdogs from South America tried their best to keep Rouge at bay. France. Keep France at bay.
Sombra as support... again!
Seeing more teams roll out with Lucio and Sombra for support these days is a thing of beauty. Just about everyone is getting tired of the traditional dive composition, so it’s nice seeing teams trying to work in some other builds. Argentina has an amazing Sombra player in DDX. His movement and use constant translocating make him hard to bring down, and he hits most of his shots with Sombra’s huge ammo capacity. Watch him in action on point A of Hollywood:
Going in through the side of the building, he pops EMP and goes to town. Though it was more of a desperation ultimate, Argentina didn’t have a whole lot to lose. It wasn’t a given that they’d hold that point from a stacked team like that, plus DDX rebuilds it really fast. His aim and presence of mind is what truly shines on this play, though. He completely shuts down D.Va and Lucio and stays behind the car instead of overextending which is something that many Sombra players are guilty of.
This mix of characters works in situations where a large medkit is available in a neutral area. Once the fight is taken to the point, the medkit inside the building is no longer just a defensive tool. Hacking it takes a big strategic option away from the defense, especially if they’re scrambling back to the point. So you have hacked medkits, a constant AoE heal from Lucio and a timed AoE heal from Soldier to work with. If you can communicate well as a team, there’s no reason this build can’t work for you on the ladder.
Sombra might be lethal in the hands of someone with godlike aim, but she’s more effective as auxiliary DPS if you have an efficient Tracer or Soldier on your team. Though Klaus isn’t as world-renowned as Soon, he’s still a very mean Tracer. Look at how he and DDX team up for some kills on the shrine of Nepal:
The way these two work together is a thing of beauty. Hack, kill, hack, kill. Tracer and Sombra have a lot of synergy that’s lost on a lot of people. When paired with Tracer, Sombra becomes quite the asset to burst DPS because of how fast her gun shoots. Hacked targets also have a very difficult time getting away from Tracer, making them vulnerable to bombs and headshots. For all you duos out there, try giving this combo a shot and see how fun it can be.
Horizon Lunar Colony sees an esports match
I can’t be certain that this is the first time we’ve seen a team opt for Horizon, but it’s one of the first. Having difficulties keeping France under control, Argentina decides to go for the most unfamiliar setting in hopes of evening the playing field a bit. The thing that makes Horizon difficult is that there are so many angles to attack from, and so much random cover to use. On the ladder, a lot of groups go for niche picks such as Bastion, Torb and Sym to help keep unorganized teams off the control point. Since they don’t work so well at the esports level, Rogue took point A without too much effort, which caster Christopher “MonteCristo” Mykles predicted would happen.
Point B is a lot more open, and a lot more difficult to take. If you go right, you have a one-way ticket to the high ground. If you go left, you have a huge area to move in and out of if need be. The problem is that the defense has a massive wall to run around behind the point, negating ultimates like D.Va bombs and tac visors. Anyway, look at what Klaus did on this nasty flank:
Always keep tabs on Tracer!
A word of advice on Sombra
Be careful how you’re using your translocate ability. I know conventional wisdom will say to plop it down on a fat medkit, but that’s why you should change it up sometimes. If the enemy scouts you doing that, you’re as good as dead. They’ll be able to time their attack when your cooldown is an issue, making you an easy kill. Using it for verticality is an excellent alternative. You can get some stylish EMPs that way, and it’s a good setup for some headshots if your aim is up to the task.
Overwatch World Cup heads to Sydney
This weekend, July 21 through July 23, groups C and D will fight it out in Sydney to see who will advance to the playoff round. If you’re a fan of European Overwatch teams and players, this is the qualifier for you. Sweden, Finland and Spain all have incredibly stacked all-star lineups with no clear frontrunner, though Sweden’s roster looks to be a slight cut above the rest. They have Misfits’ Reinforce, Tviq, Zebbosai and Manneten, Ex-Movistar Rider CWoosH and EnVyUs’ Chipshajen. Rogue might have a monopoly on France, but this mix of esports stars for Sweden is just as brutal. Be sure to tune in to see if they have what it takes to go the distance.