<
>

New Overwatch organization Rogue adds TviQ, roflgator, and more

Tracer is the cheerful British time-traveling fighter pilot in the Overwatch hero lineup. Provided by Blizzard

North American-based esports organization Rogue launched Tuesday and in the process created a new Overwatch team in Europe. The squad consists of some of the biggest and best names in the new esport, including former undefeated team IDDQD's offense, Swedish star Kevyn "TviQ" Lindström. He is often called the best player in Overwatch by many analysts and experts of the game.

Rounding out the squad will be a handful of Swedish and French players. André "iddqd" Dahlström and Jonathan "Reinforce" Larsson have left their respective teams to join this squad several weeks ago before it signed with Rogue. Brothers Michaël "winz" Bignet and Dylan "aKm" Bignet as well as Benjamin "uNKOE" Chevasson complete the final six of the team.

"Coming in with the new lineup, my expectations remain very high," TviQ told ESPN when asked about the new team. "I believe we've got a super solid core of six players I really enjoy playing with. They share the same mindset as myself and will commit as much as possible to reach the top. And I believe that Rogue can help us in our way to become the best."

The squad will be coached by American coach Robert "roflgator" Malecki, a popular Twitch streamer and former team member of IDDQD. Under his guidance, TviQ and the IDDQD team amounted a 57-0 record, beating most top Overwatch squads in the world.

Behind the team is CEO and founder Frank Villarreal, who is also an investor and co-owner of fellow American esports organization Enemy. Enemy is best known for taking second at the SMITE World Championships, as well as previously being a part of the League Championship Series. Villarreal originally invested in Enemy before the League Championship Series Expansion Tournament in late 2014. Villarreal will still remain involved with Enemy, but his main focus will shift to Rogue.

"I've loved being in esports for the past six years and feel like I have paid my dues," Villarreal told ESPN about his new venture. "After the last two years as an investor at Enemy, I was ready to create something that was uniquely my own. I'm not looking to revolutionize the esports industry, but to improve on the structures that already exist. I'm looking to create a better organization that still carries the spirit of esports inside it."

According to Villarreal, his new Overwatch team is one of the best teams in the world, based on recent scrimmage results. It will need to prove that as it prepares to compete in its upcoming show match and TakeTV's Takeover LAN tournament.

Villarreal and Rogue aren't the first experienced crew to invest in Overwatch. Some of esports' biggest business, such as Cloud9, Team EnVyUs, G2 Esports, Fnatic, Luminosity Gaming, and Team Liquid, have put money into the scene, building teams from scratch or picking up successful teams.

But despite the heavy investment, Overwatch hasn't even been officially released. The game went into beta for all pre-purchasers yesterday, but won't release publicly until May 24. Nonetheless, the team has been on the rise since its first official beta last year, attracting pros from games like Quake, Team Fortress 2, Battlefield, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.