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Overwatch League Announces Week 11 Schedule + New Hero Pool

A look at what's coming up

The Overwatch League today announced its Week 11 schedule, along with the first unified Hero Pool that coincides with available heroes in the game’s competitive mode.

Widowmaker, McCree, Reinhardt, and Brigitte are ineligible to be played in the Overwatch League as well as competitive Overwatch this week. For more information on recent Hero Pool changes, visit overwatchleague.com.

The Week 11 schedule features nine games spread across four consecutive days, beginning Thursday, April 16, and concluding Sunday, April 19. For the full schedule and local start times, visit overwatchleague.com/schedule.

Keep up with all of the latest Overwatch League news and content on the Overwatch League website, as well as on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Subscribe to the Overwatch League newsletter to receive the latest updates from the league.

Overwatch college teams selected for ‘UMG Overwatch Collegiate Clash'

College sure is different from when I went!

Torque Esports Corp.’s (TSXV: GAME) (OTCQB: MLLLF) esports tournament and broadcast operations group, UMG Media Ltd. has finalized the competing schools to take part in the ‘UMG Overwatch Collegiate Clash’ which will begin on Friday, March 21.

UMG has partnered with Activision Blizzard to host the eight-week competition which will feature esports teams from:

Wichita State
CU Boulder
Boise State
Mississippi State
Utah State
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Oklahoma State
Texas A&M
George Mason University
University of Akron
Robert Morris University
University of Texas at Dallas

The participating schools have more than 336,000 active students. These teams will compete for seven straight weeks in the series with the eighth acting as the Championship week. With $40,000 up for grabs during the competition in college scholarship funds, this collegiate offering becomes one of the major focuses for players in the Overwatch college community.

The participating schools have more than 336,000 active students. These teams will compete for seven straight weeks in the series with the eighth acting as the Championship week. With $40,000 up for grabs during the competition in college scholarship funds, this collegiate offering becomes one of the major focuses for players in the Overwatch college community.

“We’re very excited to welcome the 12 teams to ‘UMG Overwatch Collegiate Clash’ and thrilled to be working with Activision Blizzard on this competition,” Torque Esports COO, Darcy Lorincz said.

“College sports are massive in the US, esports is massive in that college-age bracket and demographic, so we think this is an incredible opportunity for everyone involved - Torque Esports, UMG, and Activision Blizzard.

“The level of interest from college teams wanting to take part in the ‘UMG Overwatch Collegiate Clash’ was amazing, and we firmly believe this will be a sector or esports that has incredible growth potential.

“Our streaming data analytics team at Stream Hatchet will be watching this event with interest. The current COVID-19 situation has placed a huge emphasis on streaming and home entertainment – the ‘stay-at-home’ market is one sector of the economy which isn’t being adversely affected by this unfortunate health crisis.”

Launched in May 2016, Overwatch is a team-based multiplayer combat game available on the PlayStation and Xbox consoles, PC, and the Nintendo Switch portable platform.

UMG is the leading platform for online tournament play and esports entertainment events. The platform has generated more than 1.2 billion page views, 25 million video views and has paid out more than US$3 million in prize money.

The UMG Overwatch Collegiate Clash will be streamed at Twitch.tv/UMGGaming.

Check out the full patch notes for Overwatch's latest update

A laundry list of features

As we mentioned earlier, Overwatch has gotten a pretty sizable update. We shared some of the overarching details for that update, but now we have the full patch notes. Check out the rundown below.

ASHE’S MARDI GRAS CHALLENGE

Get ready for Ashe’s Mardi Gras Challenge and some special, unlockable in-game content! Wins in Quick Play, Competitive Play, or Arcade will earn you themed sprays, player icons, and a new epic skin: Mardi Gras Ashe!

Tune in to participating Twitch broadcasters while they’re playing Overwatch any time through March 9th to earn a total of 6 Ashe’s Mardi Gras Challenge sprays and icons!

GENERAL UPDATES

New Feature: Hero Pools

We will be introducing Hero Pools starting in Season 21 of Competitive Play. Much like Map Pools, rather than having all heroes available for play at all times, a weekly changing list of heroes will be available. The list will include the vast majority of the hero roster, with only a few being excluded during any given week. We think this feature will help keep Competitive Play interesting, as team compositions will change more frequently during a season.

It is important to note that Hero Pools is a new feature that may not last past this initial season. Throughout the season, we will be adjusting the types of Hero Pools available. In addition, it is possible we will also adjust the frequency with which they change.

New Feature: Experimental Changes & 1-3-2 “Triple Damage” Ruleset

We’ve added a new card labeled “Experimental” within the Play menu where Overwatch players can try new balance updates, rulesets, and game modes that might be awesome or might not ever make it past the “Experimental” stage. Unlike the PTR, the Experimental area is not intended to be used for bug and stability testing. Players from all platforms will be able to test major gameplay changes, with the hope that you’ll provide us with feedback on your experience. Some of the changes we test will be vastly different than what you’re used to, but we want to reiterate that the changes we will be testing are not guaranteed to reach the retail version you’re used to playing. Experimental will not always be available: it will come and go as we have things we’d like you to try and may sometimes only last for brief periods of time.

Since Experimental is available in the retail version of Overwatch, you will be able to earn experience and progress towards win-based event unlocks by participating.

The first set of changes we want to test is a mode titled “Triple Damage,” which modifies the existing 2-2-2 Role Queue system. In this mode, teams will be composed of 1 tank, 3 damage, and 2 support heroes. One of our hopes with this test is to see if this change reduces queue times for the Damage role.

Full details here

Crash Team Racing: Nitro Fueled's next Grand Prix is its last, new challenge system to follow

Buckle up for one more go

Activision has shared a new dev blog for Crash Team Racing: Nitro-Fueled, and it reveals that the next Grand Prix is going to be the last. Don't worry though, the team has something new cooked up to follow in its way. Check out the full details below.

Bandicoots, details about the new Grand Prix season will be coming next week, but in the meantime we wanted to give you a quick update.

Over the past eight months, we have been incredibly proud of our seasonal offerings and we feel our next Grand Prix will be one of the best yet. Beenox is known for going out with a bang, and with the next Grand Prix on the horizon we announce that it will be the last official Grand Prix for CTR Nitro-Fueled. It’s absolutely a bittersweet thing for us to announce that the next Grand Prix will be the last, but at the same time we want players to know that the race isn’t over.

Through the Grand Prix, we’ve delivered fresh, new content to Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled. Our community has raced through the multitude of new tracks and challenges with each season and have amassed an amazing collection of new characters and skins and shown their style in insane new ways by customizing all their karts.

We truly have loved creating all this content, and above all we’ve been thrilled by your support. We’re happy to say that although the Grand Prix seasons are rounding out, current and new players alike will still be able to enjoy all the game modes (including online matchmaking), as well as a new ongoing challenge system, new time trials to complete and even a new drop of characters, skins and karts that will hit the track shortly after the final Grand Prix Season (including a long-awaited item that we think fans will be very happy about).

Read on for a celebration of the Grand Prix seasons and for details on what’s next for CTR Nitro-Fueled!

A Recap of the Grand Prix

Since the launch of Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled, we will have had 8 Grand Prix seasons that ranged from Spooky to Apocalyptic to Prehistoric in their theme. We’ve been able to introduce hosts of new content that lean into those various themes and build tracks with the n.sane identities that are perfect fit for Crash and Co. We’ve always strived to deliver unique and awesome content that stays true to the spirit of Crash. Because our community includes newcomers and those who have been with Crash since his race began, our commitment to giving a breadth of fun content has been at an all-time high since CTR Nitro-Fueled launched.

Through the Grand Prix, we’ve welcomed many new characters to expand our roster of racers to over 50, including Spyro, Nina Cortex as well as Tawna and the newly-named Nitro Squad.

Plus, with all the tracks added to the game through the Grand Prix, players will have raced on 40 tracks and 12 Battle Arenas that range from the originals from CTR and Crash Nitro Kart, as well as new ones that lean into various moments from Crash lore and the themes of the Grand Prix. Players can continue to experience these tracks throughout the Local Arcade and Online Matchmaking modes.

In addition to the multitude of ways to play, we brought customization to Crash Team Racing for the first time, bringing CTR’s total to 321 skins, 40 kart bodies and tons of kart customization items which provide over 760 million different possible kart combinations - - each one celebrating the creativity and fun of the CTR Nitro-Fueled community!

So, what’s next?

Challenge System

The race continues as soon as the final Grand Prix ends, with a brand new challenge system. This system gives any driver the opportunity to master challenges, earn Wumpa coins, and further customize their experience with items in the Pit Stop. There will be challenges relevant to all game modes, so players can race and play CTR Nitro-Fueled the way they enjoy most.

Three challenge types will remain active: Daily, Weekly, and Pro (Monthly). Completing challenges will give players varying amounts of Wumpa Coins that they can use in the Pit Stop.

The Pit Stop will feature items from each Grand Prix season. Players will be able to view a variety of items by refreshing the Pit Stop screen up to 2 times per day, to give them more daily options to choose from when customizing their CTR Nitro-Fueled experience.

Beat Beenox with new Time Trials

Oxide is no longer the king of the track - - going live after the final Grand Prix there will be a set of Time Trial records that will be a challenge for even the best CTR racers to beat! These track times will be based on some of the best times achieved by the Beenox team on each individual track. So the challenge is posed for the best racers out there - - can you beatus? By doing so on all tracks, you can unlock a special reward that will let others know you’ve got some serious CTR skills!

Additional Planned Post-Grand Prix Content

Finally, while the Grand Prix is ending, there will still be more items coming to CTR Nitro-Fueled.

Look out for these future additions:

· New Characters
· New Karts
· New Legendary Skins
· Legendary Skin Re-colors
· New Decals
· New Paint Jobs

Thanks for enjoying the Grand Prix seasons - - we’ve had a blast making them and seeing how much joy our fans have got from them. The race goes on, though, and we’re excited to continue to see you on the track.

Happy Racing Bandicoots!

Blizzard may have teased the Junker Queen as a playable character in Overwatch 2

From trash to treasure

Overwatch 2 is going to have some new playable characters without a doubt, but Blizzard hasn't mentioned any specifically. While we're still waiting for an official confirmation, a special video Blizzard put together for the holidays might have teased one of those characters.

Blizzard ran a special yule log video for the holidays, which featured Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan sitting by a fire and randomly talking. During the extremely long video, Kaplan mentions the Junker Queen at one point, and wonders out loud if she'd ever make it to the playable roster. Blizzard obviously knows that talking like this will drum up speculation and interest, so either they're teasing a character that's sure to join the game, or they're just riling up fans for the fun of it.

Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled Winter Festival Grand Prix Begins December 12th, 2019

Better put some chains on those tires

Crashing through the snow, in a decked out Nitro Sleigh – your favorite Bandicoot is back and filled with holiday cheer in the Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled Winter Festival Grand Prix! Beginning December 12, the Winter Festival Grand Prix features an all-new track, Gingerbread Joyride, as well as new characters, karts, pit stop items and a very special Spyro skin that’s sure to bring you holiday cheer.

Get ready to race in high-octane holiday style with these cool features:

NEW TRACK: Dash through a holiday scene like no other in Gingerbread Joyride! From the warm, welcoming hues of the gingerbread village to the cool, idyllic scenery of the winter wonderland, this track is sure to fire up some cheer as you cruise past your competition!

NEW CHARACTERS: Rilla Roo and Yaya Panda enter the festivities, as well as a brand new character, Hasty - - a high-flying Moose based on an infamous cut character from CTR lore. But wait, this just in! Your favorite broadcasting duo Chick n Stew aren’t just sitting in the booth any longer - - they’ll also be clucking it up and down the track in this special Grand Prix season!

NEW KARTS: Plow through the competition with the Snowplower, leave other racers salivating with the Candy Cone, and finally take the reins in the ultimate holiday machine with the Nitro Sleigh!

PIT STOP ITEMS: A Reindeer Crash Skin, Pajama Skins for Baby Crash and Coco, scrumptious Pastry wheels, holiday-themed paint jobs and stickers - - there’s no shortage of new swag to celebrate the season! But wait until you see the skin to stand above them all - - Winter Guardian Spyro.

NITRO-GAUGE CHALLENGES & REWARDS: Polar in an ugly sweater, Hasty in a slick ski-suit, and so much more, complete challenges to earn these and other new rewards in the Winter Festival Nitro Gauge.

CHAMPION KART AND DECAL: Finish in the top 5% of the Grand Prix leaderboards and win the Champion Kart and Winter Festival signature decal!

The Winter Festival Grand Prix is bringing the joy early! This Grand Prix season is set to go live on December 12.

Henry Cavill reveals who he mains in Overwatch

He's ready for your hate

Henry Cavill may be super excited about playing the role of Geralt in Netflix's Witcher series, but it turns out he's a fan of other games as well. Cavill recently revealed that he's into Overwatch, and plays as a rather divisive character.

"So I played Overwatch, and I got back into it just this year, and the character who I had initially picked, who is like a -- no one picks it, cause it's quite hard to play, and it's a Support character, and now everyone hates this character, because of whatever updates they had. Symmetra, everyone hates me."

Overwatch director shows interest in the series going beyond games

Overwatch, the telenovela

An Overwatch sequel is in the works, and obviously, that's going to pack in all sorts of new experiences, characters, and more. With that said, could there be aspirations for the Overwatch franchise beyond the video game scene? EDGE asked Overwatch director Jeff Caplan about any possible off-shoots for the series, to which he said this.

“We’ve always thought of Overwatch as a universe, not a single game. The original game was the first expression of Overwatch, but we dream of what other forms of media could feature Overwatch. Movies? An animated series? What other game types would everyone love to see in the Overwatch universe? We hope that the characters of Overwatch exist far into the future and are expressed in ways that we can’t even imagine today.”

Game Informer Video - Overwatch's Push Mode

Andrew Reiner joins Jeff Cork and Leo Vader to show gameplay of a new mode coming to Overwatch and Overwatch 2.

Believe it or not, a Diablo game almost released for the Game Boy

Diablown away

Diablo is a long-running franchise for Activision Blizzard, and is certainly loved by millions of fans around the world. It took quite some time for Nintendo fans to get a taste of Diablo via Diablo III on Switch, but it turns out we almost had a chance to go hands-on with an exclusive Diablo game back in the Game Boy days.

As crazy as it seems, there was actually a Diablo title in development for the Game Boy. This would be a game tailor-made for the Game Boy, looking to give Nintendo fans a taste of Diablo's grand adventures on a bite-sized scale. Unfortunately, after a number of months, the call came from higher-up to can the project, as Blizzard had never released a game on cartridge before, and they were worried about a number of factors.

If you want to read more about what the project offered, and how it came to an end, make sure to check out the feature here.

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