Olivia R. November 4, 2019
“We have some alarms going off, ‘cause it’s Saudi Arabia time. Saudi Arabia is on fire, boys! It’s lit!”
Casters at the Overwatch World Cup tried not to seem flustered as fire alarms kept going off during the Overwatch World Cup this weekend. But as the alarms persisted, Connar “Avast” Prince and Andrew “ZP” Rush were forceed to evacuate their broadcast positions mid-game.
Alarms could be heard echoing in the background.
“We have 50 seconds left. Can we finish the game before the fire consumes us?” one joked on-air.
“What’s more important? Life or liberty?”
Soon they were informed they had to leave.
“Oh, we’re leaving. Bye-bye, guys, love ya!” they called out. “Farewell!”
The casters could then be heard shuffling away from their mics, their fun having been cut short. The game went on without them, with Saudi Arabia pushing towards the final point without any voice-over from casters. In the end, the game went to Portugal.
Later, Avast informed his Twitter followers that the alarm was simply a test, although mid-match seemed like a strange time to do such a thing. No one at BlizzCon was in any real danger.
"It was a test. We’re very safety conscious here at Blizzcon," he tweeted.
One fan joked that it was the first "caster C9 in history," referencing when a team accidentally steps away from the point or payload during overtime.
Still others felt it was an inappropriate time for a fire drill, and some even blamed Blizzard for Saudi Arabia's loss.
"Saudi Arabia was winning the fight until the alarms went on this is BS 'test' in a tournament match and at the last crucial seconds, FU blizzard," one tweet read.
Overwatch World Cup plays on despite controversy
Despite the blunder, the first day of the Overwatch World Cup went smoothly. It was a satisfying day for Overwatch fans, although the journey for many countries leading up to the event was full of uncertainty. Because of a lack of funding from Blizzard, many teams were unable to make it to the event.
Hong Kong showed up to BlizzCon, even as protests against Blizzard took place outside after the game developers banned a player for speaking out on behalf of Hong Kong against China.
Another noteworthy caster moment was when someone dressed up as Charles "Entertainment" Cheese came up to the casters desk and dragged Avast away, leaving the other casters genuinely confused.
"What is happening? Chad Avast's rodents friend... He was just lifted away, right when we were going to be hearing some incredible analysis," another caster said with a laugh.
This was a reference to a tweet back in July in which Avast joked that an animatronic from the pizza chain would "find him" if he kept tweeting about them hosting a Florida Mayhem tournament. He had spent the summer joking about Chuck E. Cheese organizing a "Chad of the Month" contest.