The Merch Game

Season One Teams Have Not Had A Strong Clothing Outing

In addition to being a crap and judgy writer, I am also a crap and judgy clothing designer. I’m working on the judgy part but while it’s here lets talk about the clothing options provided by the season one Overwatch teams, shall we?

Wanted to show something I actually like before shitting on everything.

Wanted to show something I actually like before shitting on everything.

Man, I really hate merch, especially sports merch. The team logo just thrown on a too thick heather grey hoodie makes me wanna fight my own mom. How multiple full ass industries have all made the same pieces of clothing for the last fifteen years is beyond me. Now that winter is here, I wonder if we’ll see the pom knit hats with ball on top for the 47,000 time. It is the absolute worst and I hope it goes away.

When I first started getting into esports six or seven years ago I had hope that once they became more mainstream they would be different. We had a mostly younger demographic, mostly younger brand owners and mostly younger players. This was a solid chance for esports to start off on the right foot. Then, the Overwatch League came around with the franchising and I knew, I KNEW that it was gonna be different this time. Esports was gonna show traditional sports how to start off on the right foott

Well, fuck

Well, fuck

Come on guys! You’re better than this! It’s a league run by (mostly) young and much more fashionable age group, let’s get it together. All that money and no drip? You have the chance to change sports merchandise, don’t fumble the bag.

Now I understand that the league is not the RAF Simmons, but man I can’t be the only one who hates generic sports apparel. Jerseys are made of shit material and every t-shirt is just a shit version of either the team or league logo faded out. Man I was really hoping the first esports league of its kind would take a different path. But here we are, logos on a t-shirt made out of, elastic? Yoga mats? I have no idea.

New York state of mind

So much more drip than anything in the official Blizzard store

So much more drip than anything in the official Blizzard store

Now, there are a few teams that have taken it upon themselves to produce a bit higher quality items to purchase. The NYXL has partnered with The Undefeated twice now on clothing line that, while not my up of tea, have been much more wearable and nicer looking.

They’ve released clothing ahead of the pack since almost the start of the inaugural season. Much more sleek and much less cringy (looking at you “Nerf Poko”) than anything else that has been released by other teams. I’m not even an Excelsior fan and I want their stuff just based on how it looks! Their merch options have been better than anything the other teams have offered, including the London Spitfire who WON THE CHAMPIONSHIP. I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain why the championship team with a lot of eyes on them should have a good line of clothing.

slow progress is still progress

Alright, I should probably stop being an idiot and acknowledge that there have good options made available from other teams besides the Excelsior. The Philadelphia Fusion partnered up with Ultimate earlier this year on a few pieces including the “Tech” hoodie featured at the top of this article. Also, during Black Friday this year a few teams gave a better effort with the clothing options, like the Dallas fuel who released a good line that included a pink women’s that I really, really want.

Man, I know this one is super simple but damn I love the color.

Man, I know this one is super simple but damn I love the color.

My favorite has been the Toronto Defiant, who came HOT out the gate with their merch before their entire roster was even fully announced. The jackets, hats, hoodies and shirts they currently have on offer have been simple but well made to the point where knowing what the Overwatch League even is isn’t necessary.

Simple but Einstein level for sports merch.

Simple but Einstein level for sports merch.

keep it classy

So, if you made it through this long, rambling rant hopefully you’ve come out of it wanting a little bit more from your favorite team in terms of the merch they give you. If you are reading one of my articles I know you’re a savvy, well dressed, beautiful individual so you deserve more. I’m looking forward to the day where we could burn our heather grey t-shirts in a warm pyre and dance around it like the scene in The Grinch with the tree. That’ll be a good day.

If you wanna get in touch you can find me @NoOneLovesGary on Twitter!