If Week 1 of the Overwatch League was the originator of Cheez-It memes, Week 2 is the originator of “PauseWatch” memes. Technical difficulties plagued the first match of the Battle of Brotherly Love, as the first Philly homestand kicked off with a match between the Florida Mayhem and the Houston Outlaws. The showdown was forced to pause three times due to hardware problems. Members of the Florida Mayhem reportedly experienced issues with at least one monitor and a headset.
The combined and continuous interruptions resulted in almost a half hour of downtime, during which the Philadelphia crowd voiced their displeasure at having to delay their chance to cheer on the Fusion. Members of the Houston Outlaws matched the frustration of the crowd as their game was continuously interrupted.
However, during their post-game interview, Muma and Blasé noted, “Even if we show visual frustration, I think we’re all still incredibly focused, it just sucks that sometimes it’ll pause right when we’re about to do a fast push and then the enemy has time to think about what we’re doing.”
The Outlaws’ attempted defense on Eichenwalde illustrates Blasé’s point. Mayhem had capped the point and begun their push through the first gate. With the Outlaws looking for a way to engage in the first team fight, they dropped over the castle ramparts, just in time for Mayhem to see them and for the game to freeze once more.
Both teams waste no time, however, as pauses afford them the opportunity to think about their next move, according to Blasé. “We’re strategizing, rethinking, what do they have? What do we have? what do we want to do?”
Method to the Mayhem
The Mayhem had their own strategies for staying focused during the technical delays. Karayan elaborated, “Kuki told us one thing before we went down: If it feels like our concentration is getting fuzzy, there’s a phrase where we say, ‘hey let’s wake up, let’s pay attention. So we’d say it to each other when it felt like things were in lapse, during pause times and stuff like that.”
The Florida Mayhem took the victory over the Houston Outlaws 3-0 on February 15. The Outlaws have yet to take a victory in the Overwatch League 2020 season, but will look for their next win on February 22 as they face off against the Boston Uprising.