Former Los Angeles Gladiators and LA Valiant DPS player Ted “silkthread” Wang announced on Friday his retirement from professional Overwatch. The publication was made through Twitter, catching fans and even other pro players by surprise. In his post, he talks about the multiple things that took him in this direction.
Silkthread had signed a contract for Overwatch League Season 2 with the Chengdu Hunters, even going so far as to travel to China to begin with practices and scrims. This announcement, however, was not out of the blue. His team already knew this was coming. He had spoken with them prior, and had signed his termination and release contract.
Goodbye Professional Overwatch: A Journey Ended
— silkthread (@silkthread) December 1, 2018
“I’ve Lost the Passion and Drive for the Game”
In his announcement, he broaches a topic that’s been on the podium for some time: the current state of the game. He remembers times, specifically last year, when he would have gladly accepted playing Overwatch for 14 hours a day. However, he now feels unable to commit to such a task due to the mental demands and “complete burnout” from the game.
Something else that he feels heavily affected his decision was the broad differences between esports organizations in the West and the East. Everything from work ethic to privacy was starting to be an issue. The coach also required them to communicate only in Chinese during games, scrims and even VOD reviews. This, along with Overwatch’s current mental draining, forced him to double his effort to even just try to play. The issue with language was not that big, though: according to him, he had managed to memorize the game’s terminology and handle himself fairly well.
The moment to make this decision, he feels, is the right one. Since the team had only one week of practicing with him, it was early enough not affect the future plans of the Hunters’ coaches. He feels that the 10 months of heavy practicing that would come from staying on the team could’ve ended up taking a heavy toll on him and his health, and that it would be unfair for his team to have to play with someone who is not giving his 100%. He expresses that it would be selfish for him to continue “when I’ve lost that passion and drive for the game.”
Future and Plans
For his time off currently, he will be concentrating on his stream, and looks forward to both playing and sharing Overwatch in a more casual way. Not doing it professionally will be a big burden off his shoulders. He will be establishing a stream schedule as soon as he returns to Texas and will be streaming often. You can check his Twitch here.
There has always been a clear plan, however: University is his next step after esports. He already applied to three different colleges: UC Berkeley, UC Irvine and UT Austin, where he will be majoring in business. This, however, does not mean he will be taking his life away from esports. He says that he would be honored to help this quickly-growing industry in any way he can. The possibility of esports gaining the same amount of fame as regular sports is what’s driving him to taking that career path.
Currently, he is still in China, where he intends to have nice, lengthy vacation. He will be visiting various tourist attractions as well as his parents’ home town.
Finally, he ends his post by giving thanks to various people and organizations, as well as to his fans. He thanks them for the opportunities that were given to him and for everything that he learned.
From us here at The Game Haus, we’d like to wish silkthread the best in life. Good luck in his studies and with all future plans, and thanks for everything, from Overwatch League’s Inaugural Season and before. We appreciate everything he’s given to the community and fans. We will be watching his stream constantly.
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