Australia's had a pretty good record as far as Overwatch nations go, but our representation in Overwatch's biggest league: one player, one coach. That could be set to change, however, with a new report suggesting that Blizzard is investigating Melbourne as a potential location for its next season.
Sources have told Seamus Bryne (former Kotaku managing editor and publisher) at the AFR that Melbourne is being considered for the second Overwatch League season. Blizzard wouldn't confirm Melbourne outright, although OWL commissioner Nate Nanzer did specify that Australia was under consideration.
"If somebody wants to have a conversation with us about Melbourne, we would definitely have the conversation and be very interested," Nanzer is quoted as saying.
The major sticking point for an Australian expansion, however, is cost. Franchises reportedly shelled out at least $US15 million to get a spot, with franchise fees for the larger US cities like New York supposedly hitting $US20 million.
The attractiveness of Melbourne follows the state's investment into video games for several years, which has recently included support for the growing esports scene. The Melbourne Esports Open was announced by Tourism and Major Events Minister John Eren recently, running annually every September.
"It’s expected to generate up to $25 million for the Victorian economy over five years, supporting jobs and boosting local businesses," the Victorian Premier's website said.
The release also claimed Victoria had around 560,000 fans of esports in the state, with the esports open aiming for a crowd of 20,000 for its inaugural event.