Former Los Angeles Gladiators DPS player Silkthread has announced his decision to retire from competitive Overwatch. The decision was despite the player already signing with the Chengdu Hunters for Season 2. However, the player did have a talk with the Chengdu Hunters management and informed them of his decision beforehand.
There were multiple reasons for the player’s decision to quit competitive gaming. First and foremost was the fact that he did not enjoy Overwatch anymore. This is a recurring theme amongst many Overwatch professionals, especially with the recent additions in terms of heroes. The game’s development does not seem to be in the same direction as many Overwatch personalities expect. You can read Silkthread’s full statement on his Twitlonger here.
This decision has definitely been the most difficult one I’ve had to make in the 19 years I’ve been alive. The only thing on my mind the entire past year has been how to better myself as a player within the Overwatch League, so this sudden shift has definitely left me with some degree of emotional confusion. There are multiple reasons that led me to this decision. First and foremost, I simply do not enjoy professional Overwatch as much as I did in the past. If you were to ask me one year ago how I felt about practising Overwatch 14 hours a day, I would have gladly accepted the challenge and opportunity. Now, I can feel my mental levels draining extremely quickly while practising, and I’m afraid I have reached levels of complete burnout for the game.
Secondly, the disparity in cultural differences between western esports organizations and Chinese esports organizations were far greater than I had originally anticipated. The differing standards for work hours, privacy, living conditions, off-days, and work ethic were all extremely difficult for me to adjust to. The head coach also requires the team to communicate in 100% Chinese so it took a significantly higher amount of mental energy for me to translate everything in my head into English to understand and communicate. This applied not only to in-game practices but also to VOD reviews of our scrims. (To be honest, communicating in Mandarin was definitely the lesser of my problems. My Chinese reading and writing are definitely lacklustre but my hearing and speaking improved strikingly quickly. After studying and memorizing a lot of in-game Overwatch terminology.
Silkthread to pursue higher education
Silkthread will pursue his Masters degree in Business. He has already applied to three universities: UC Berkeley, UC Irvine, and UT Austin. At a later time, he does keep a comeback to esports open, however, it will not be as a player. He is excited and enthusiastic about esports’ growth and its development. With time, he hopes that esports can become as big as regular sports.
Silkthread is a wonderful teammate, one who has been a key influence in the Gladiators roster. His calm presence and his ability to talk to his teammates openly about anything is what makes him endearing to most. His absence will definitely be felt amongst the Overwatch League fans.
Chengdu Hunters announce three more players.
The Chengdu Hunters team has announced the addition of three more players to their Overwatch league Season 2 roster. With this, they complete their roster and they have a fully Mandarin speaking team.
Last but not least, our DPS players join the hunt!
⚔️ Hu “Jinmu” Yi (易虎)
🔫 Tzu-Heng “@Baconjack0227” Lo (罗子恒)
💣 Zhihao “YangXiaoLong” Zhang (张智浩)
— Chengdu Hunters (@ChengduHunters) December 1, 2018