Another week in a Genji meta appears to be likely. Does that change anything?
We’re easing into Overwatch esports once again with a relatively tame week 24. The top of the leader board in each region are on a break week and unfortunately, this time around the schedule does a worse job at finding attractive matches than Tinder. That said, the mild shift in metas could elevate some of those pairings.
Word on the street is that we’re sticking with double shield Genji comps. Given that Mei, Widowmaker, Orisa and Ana are banned, Reinhardt comes into play to frontline together with Sigma with the occasional dive tanks in Winston and D.Va depending on the map. DPS might sway between Genji/Ashe or Genji/Sombra, with Tracer coming in for full dive. The backline meta is still pretty wild with five different supports being played in different combinations. Brigitte/Baptise, Lucio/Moira, Zenyatta/Brigitte are on the menu and the Swedish shieldmaiden remains in the meta despite her Armor Pack change.
Match of the week: Houston Outlaws vs Dallas Fuel
10pm (BST) // 5pm (EST) // 2pm (PST) Friday, July 17
Who will even be playing here?
Houston Outlaws (3-2, 55%): The battle for Texas is very hard to call. We don’t know what kind of meta compositions will be played, which form these teams will show up in or even just who will be playing for Dallas. Needless to say that this match has historically always played out differently than the form of each team indicated, perhaps due to the added pressure of the rivalry. Even if Decay showed up, it would likely not be a safe win either.
If we do in fact see dive, there would always be the possibility for Muma to get back into the action. Gamsu and notE arguably also had their best performances on dive tanks. It is more likely that Outlaws’ coaching staff will be experimenting than Fuel’s though, potentially giving them an edge in the curveball game.
We’ve looked into the future and believe that the majority of scenarios will result in an Outlaws victory but only with coin-flip certainty.
Vancouver Titans vs Paris Eternal
8pm (BST) // 3pm (EST) // 12pm (PST) Friday, July 17
Can anyone control sp9rk1e?
Paris Eternal (3-1, 70%): Given the Eternal’s success during the Summer Showdown, and the assumption that the meta hasn’t changed too much, an upset is unlikely. The Titans had trouble containing an outrageous sp9rk1e and there’s no evidence to believe that CarCar would have more success this time around.
Hangzhou Spark vs Seoul Dynasty
9am (BST) // 4am (EST) // 1am (PST) Saturday, July 18
Can the Spark get it together and perform in a meta that should suit them?
Seoul Dynasty (3-1, 60%): Profit in Genji duels would be an experience tasting of godly ambrosia, alas we do not know what we will get here. Let’s pretend we had a clue which versions showed up for each team (world-beating or glue-eating), it would still be hard to predict this match in half of those cases. At their best even in this meta, this match will probably be the best of the week. At its worst, we have a toilet bowl and nothing to wipe with.
Guangzhou Charge vs London Spitfire
11am (BST) // 6am (EST) // 3am (PST) Saturday, July 18
How could anyone possibly predict an upset here?
London Spitfire (3-1, 55%): You read this correctly, in a meta that has not meaningfully changed and in which the Charge have beaten the seemingly indomitable Dragons, we’re predicting Spitfire here. The mild changes enforced by the hero bans and the current form of the Charge coming out of the break suggests that Spitfire look strong here. These developments should make this series an interesting watch.
Chengdu Hunters vs New York Excelsior
1pm (BST) // 8am (EST) // 5am (PST) Saturday, July 18
Can the Hunters finally find a curveball that hits?
New York Excelsior (3-1, 65%): On paper, this isn’t a bad meta for Chengdu with ample room to experiment. That said, Genji’s can still carry and there aren’t too many options that would contain Haksal effectively.
Vancouver Titans vs Los Angeles Gladiators
8pm (BST) // 3pm (EST) // 12pm (PST) Saturday, July 18
Can the Gladiators finally click?
Los Angeles Gladiators (3-2, 55%): It’s been a rough season and an even rougher patch for the Gladiators. The silver lining is that there’s no better time to reset and rally the troops than a break. They have all the puzzle pieces to succeed, but can they put them together against a hungry rookie roster? It won’t be a pretty series, but we believe the Gladiators will prevail in the end.
Washington Justice vs Toronto Defiant
10pm (BST) // 5pm (EST) // 2pm (PST) Saturday, July 18
How much did the Justice improve really?
Washington Justice (3-2, 55%): The Defiant significantly improved with new blood in form of numlocked, Kruise and spazzo coming in and yet they could struggle against an equally improving Justice here, who could’ve possibly gotten just as far as the Defiant in the Summer Showdown, had they been on the side of the bracket that Toronto was on. This prediction makes no logical sense to you? Watch the match, mate.
San Francisco Shock vs Boston Uprising
12am (BST) Sunday, July 18 // 7pm (EST) // 4pm (PST) Saturday, July 18
Will there be a new record of some sort?
San Francisco Shock (3-0, 85%): Good game, no remake.
Los Angeles Valiant vs Atlanta Reign
2am (BST) Sunday, July 18 // 9pm (EST) // 6pm (PST) Saturday, July 18
Who’s still on the struggle bus?
Los Angeles Valiant (3-2, 55%): Other than some of the other close matches, this one promises to be a good one. Valiant had a break to recuperate and rethink their approach to this meta while the Reign received additional time to get Erster and Edison up to full-speed on their meta heroes. We’d be surprised if this turned into a clean sweep for either team.
Paris Eternal vs Toronto Defiant
8pm (BST) // 3pm (EST) // 12pm (PST) Sunday, July 19
What does Agilities look like next to sp9rk1e?
Paris Eternal (3-1, 70%): It’s the second game of the week for both teams and this has historically favoured teams who have the better pound for pound roster. Does anything more really need to be said? Can you even make the case that anyone on Toronto is better than their counterpart? Moreover, the transitional properties of the Summer Showdown, of course, also apply here, making the Eternal the clear favourite here.
Atlanta Reign vs Florida Mayhem
10pm (BST) // 5pm (EST) // 2pm (PST) Sunday, July 19
Can the Mayhem find a way to old glory in this new meta?
Florida Mayhem (3-1, 60%): The most important aspect of this match seems to be that it’s a trap game for the Reign, with the Mayhem enjoying an off-day where they can get free footage of Atlanta’s playstyle without having to share theirs. That Florida is adaptable and that they can turn around on their strategy on a day's notice has been something that their General Manager Albert Yeh has discussed before. Even outside those considerations, if dive is indeed playable especially in the Tracer iteration, then those maps should be free for the Mayhem.
Boston Uprising vs Los Angeles Valiant
12am (BST) Monday, July 20 // 7pm (EST) // 4pm (PST) Sunday, July 19
Does the Valiant get an easy victory for their confidence?
Los Angeles Valiant (3-1, 65%): Bringing Fusions back to his beloved Reinhardt could help the Uprising a little, but it was hardly the issue for the Uprising during the Summer Showdown and the week beforehand. Boston lacks a quality Genji that seemingly every team, including the bottom tier teams, have readily available. An upset at the hand of the Uprising would likely come through continued internal challenges that the Valiant talked about previously.
Images via Blizzard Entertainment