The Overwatch League’s inaugural season victors, the London Spitfire, might have played all of their main season matches at Blizzard’s arena in Burbank, California, but they still courted a local following, including adopting the quintessentially English ‘It’s coming home’ messaging before winning the finals. Now, the unspecified 'it' will be 'them,' as they'll be visiting London for two weeks this October.
The Houston Outlaws will be making an appearance too, as part of the ‘Gilded Gala’ that will see the two teams face off in a show match. It seems as though it’ll be more of a fun-focused, All-Star-esque event than a true rivalry, though, with the Spitfire website explaining: “The event will feature three to four star players of the Spitfire and Outlaws engaging in unique and fun game modes, such as 1v1s, mystery heroes, fans playing with the pros, and more.”
The Spitfire announced that they wanted to visit London as a celebration for their season one victory, and it’s likely to be the first time that London-based Spitfire fans have had a chance to watch the team in action anywhere other than Twitch.
Though the League wants to move to a travelling format that will see teams play in their own cities by 2020, the details remain hazy. For now, events like these are being organised by the teams themselves. In this case, the efforts are led by the Spitfire’s general manager, Susie Kim, who’s also looking into options for bringing the club elsewhere in the UK to meet more fans.
Other teams have been organising similar events during the downtime of the off-season, like the California Cup. That’s between the San Francisco Shock and the Los Angeles Valiant, (and bizarrely not involving the other Los Angeles team, the Gladiators).
Tickets for the show match, which will take place at the Olympic Park, are available for sale now, though I suspect they may be sold out very soon. The Outlaw’s leg of the Gilded Gala will take place in January 2019.