Overwatch Contenders (OWC) is a Major series of professional Overwatch tournaments held around the world (seven regions), organized by Blizzard Entertainment. Contenders acts as the development series below the Overwatch League for aspiring pro players.
Contenders began in 2017 with Contenders Season Zero and Contenders 2017 Season 1 in North America and Europe.
Beginning in 2018, Contenders expanded to seven regions. The seven current regions are:
- North America
- South America
In addition to expanding to seven regions, the Trials system was introduced, and relegation between Contenders and Open Division was revealed. The top 4 teams from the previous Open Division season, and the bottom 4 teams from the previous Contenders season, would play in Trials to determine who would play in the next season of Contenders.
Beginning in 2018 Season 1 of Contenders, Overwatch League teams were given the opportunity to establish Academy teams to develop talent in Contenders. All Overwatch League teams except for the Los Angeles Valiant, Dallas Fuel and the Seoul Dynasty established Academy teams for the first season of 2018 Contenders, with the Dallas Fuel establishing their Academy team during the second season.
Relevant Overwatch Development League Series
Precursor leagues ran in 2016/2017, before Contenders was expanded to each respective region.
|Region||Location||Abbr.||League Name||Contenders Region|
|Shanghai||OWPS||Overwatch Premier Series||Contenders China|
|Seoul||APEX||OGN Overwatch APEX||Contenders Korea|
|Taipei||OPC||Overwatch Pacific Championship||Contenders Pacific|
- Currently, 10 of the 12 Overwatch League teams have established Academy teams in various Contenders regions.