‘Chiu on This’ is a short and regular opinion blast
There has been a furor lately in the Overwatch League scene over the circumstances of Ellie’s decision to quit the league. Her particular circumstances seem a bit extreme as apparently no one actually knows who she is and being a player in the Overwatch scene has increased the level of scrutiny around her as the Second Wind Owner stated on twitter:
(2/2) their Messiah. Between needing a player to live up to huge expectations and having to question their own safety, it seems that the OW community isn't ready to just view a player as just a player. We wanted a player, but it seemed like the public wanted something else.
— Justin Hughes (@SwerteSiJustin) January 2, 2019
The level of pressure was likely immense and likely only increased because of the lack of information about her as a player. So it’s hard for me to comment on that situation specifically without knowing more of the details, but I can say that while not as extreme, this is a fairly typical path to pro in other games.
At the beginning of Overwatch, Korean players didn’t believe how good Geguri was and to prove them wrong, she did a public broadcast of her playing the game. In CS:GO, this has been a constant cycle of all young players as they are accused by pros of cheating. They then go to LAN and prove they’re good, and eventually join the best teams. The most recent player that this has happened to is ropz. He was accused of potentially being a cheater and to clear up his name, he went to the FPL offices and played in front of the camera. In League of Legends, Faker (the consensus greatest player of all time) accused rookie Chinese player ZhanQisususu of scripting and in response, ZhanQisususu streamed his games to prove his innocence.
Pros will always be fairly suspicious of new players that suddenly make a huge rise in skill at the top levels as they’ve had years of experience playing against scripters, cheaters, hackers, etc. So that will naturally be their first impulse and while I don’t agree with it, it’s part of trying to rise up in the pro esports space. But as I’ve shown with all of these examples, the easiest and fastest way to shut down those types of criticisms is to prove that you can do it live. If a player can’t do that, then it’s unlikely they would have ever had the wherewithal to make it close to the top levels of the scene.