REUNITED cease operations, roster to stick together

by Josh Bury Jan 9
Thumbnail image courtesy of theScore esports / REUNITED / Blizzard Entertainment

REUNITED have ceased all operations, citing financial concerns, but the roster is planning to stick together to seek new opportunities.

The organization, known primarily for their Overwatch team, made the announcement on their website Monday. The post notes that the move is due to "a range of reasons," but that the primary concern is financial.

"The main reason ... is the timing of the Overwatch League conflicting with our internal financial model, as we are running out of money."

The post also confirms previous reports that the team was in talks with several traditional sports entities but that uncertainty regarding the acquisition of spots for the Overwatch League had stalled out the talks.

RELATED: REUNITED Founder: 'We are in talks with clubs from [the] NBA, Premier League and Bundesliga'

The post from REUNITED says that they are in favor of the Overwatch League, but that the timing of the announcement "came at the worst possible moment" for the organization.

Several of the former REUNITED players took to Twitter to confirm that they would remain as a team and attempt to find a new organization.

The roster has been one of Europe's top teams since even before the game's release. During the game's inaugural post-release season, the team became known for Harrison "Kruise" Pond's in-your-face Lucio play, Hendrik-William "vallutaja" Kinks' hitscan performances and some incredible Genji play shown off by DPS Finley "Kyb" Adisi.

Kyb, who later left the team's starting roster but remained under contrac, has also recently announced that he is a free agent.

Their best placement at a premier event was a second-place finish at the ESL Atlantic Showdown, held at Gamescom. Reaching the grand finals, they lost 3-1 to Rogue.

RELATED: REUNITED co-founder on forming a player-owned organization: 'We saw the potential in the game'

Besides the Overwatch team's strong results, the organization was also notable for being a player-owned organization akin to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's Astralis. In a previous interview in August 2016, REUNITED co-founder Frederik Kragh Christensen talked about the model, noting it was a risk.

"So we actually decided to take a bet on this, because we thought that this was a huge chance, you know? We also believe that, in a few months, we're going to be in the same position that Astralis are in CS, where they have to choose between big tournaments because it's so packed, hopefully."

However, instead of a CS-like ecosystem, the reveal of the Overwatch League at BlizzCon 2016 points to a more centralized structure for the game's competitive future. The league has already attracted potential interest from big names in the traditional sports space.

Josh "Gauntlet" Bury is a news editor for theScore esports. You can find him on Twitter.