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Overwatch Players Spend 30 Hours Watching Games, Get No Rewards [Update]

A now-removed Reddit thread catalogs the struggles many OWL viewers have had in renewing their promised rewards

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An overwatch hero tries to grab a trophy but is denied.
Overwatch? More like Noverwatch, amirite?
Image: Activision Blizzard / Kotaku

Some folks watch esports events for the thrill of seeing a game played at the highest possible skill level. Others tune in for promised rewards from developers. If you’re in the latter camp, and you logged a ton of hours of watching the latest Overwatch League event on YouTube, you’re probably very unhappy right now. You, like others, may be missing the skins and other cosmetics that Blizzard promised to give you for tuning in.

Overwatch League, the official home for pro-level Overwatch 2 events, recently closed out its 2022 season. As an incentive to watch the event (beyond the enjoyment of the game, of course), Blizzard promised a variety of “perks,” which included some League Tokens (which can be redeemed for exclusive skins and cosmetics), home and away skins for heroes, sprays, and other digital collectibles. Rewards would be doled out for every three hours of viewing time, provided your Battle.net account and YouTube accounts were linked, and were expected to hit player accounts around November 15. That day has come and gone, and some players who’ve logged as much as 30 hours of viewing time are still without all of their promised goodies.

“If you haven’t gotten your OWL rewards yet you never will. Thanks Blizzard” starts one notable Reddit thread cataloging unredeemed rewards from watching the event. The post includes a screenshot from a Blizzard Support correspondence expressing that the errors are likely due to the viewer not being “eligible” for the cosmetic rewards. But the same message also indicates that “Customer Support is not able to verify eligibility for OWL drops and cannot assist with this issue. Have a great day.”

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A top reply to this post, which has now been removed by the subreddit’s moderators (but is still visible), states “yea I accepted the fact that I wasn’t going to get my rewards once my League Tokens stopped incrementing once it hit 60.” The reply continues “I’ll probably still lurk in future events like this past one but I won’t be expecting to get what they say I will. Just a shame.”

This sentiment isn’t unique. With over 500 comments, many expressing the same level of disappointment and frustration, it’s clear that this is a widespread issue, and one that seems to affect viewers who were eligible as they received some rewards, but not others. “I literally watched 15 hours of this event, only got 20 tokens and no skins” reads one such comment.

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“The Twitch drops they do have worked perfectly for me” reads another comment, “the one single YouTube one they’ve done for OW2 has had nothing but problems.”

Reddit isn’t the only place where viewers are airing their frustrations over unreceived rewards. Over on the official Overwatch forums, a thread with over 700 replies catalogs similar frustrations. “I watched like 70 hours and haven’t gotten the rewards yet either” reads one comment. “This is [ridiculous]” states another, “I have 115 tokens, I got the D.Va skin set and everything below that, and the pulse pistols. I have not received anything else and it’s almost December, like come on.”

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Another comment laments the response from customer support, “Support is doing support things still, saying that it is the user’s fault.”

Though the event’s games themselves were surely entertaining, that so many viewers logged hours to never see all of their promised rewards is surely a sour note to end on. In the post-lootbox, live service world of Overwatch 2, it’s even more disappointing that free cosmetics are getting held up by such issues.

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In response to these reports, Overwatch League released the following tweet, indicating that they expect the cosmetic items in question to roll out over the course of the next week:

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 Update 12/1/22 9:14 a.m. ET: Included an official response from Overwatch League to the details of this story.