What you should know about the upcoming #HGC "Rosterpocalypse"
With HGC 2017 ending and the transfer period starting the lineups of a lot more HGC teams will change than people currently expect. Most of the existing teams will make changes and a lot of them will probably be very surprising to the community. What I would like to stress with this post is that change is not a bad thing. The word rosterpocalypse gets thrown around every time this happens and most of the comments I read are negative. A lot of people seem to have the idea that change in a roster is essentially bad and that it's always preferential for players to stick together and "grow" as a team or overcome their differences.
Changes to a lineup are not always made because a team believes they failed at an event. And this seems to be the dominant opinion that I run into when I read about roster-swaps after BlizzCon in particular. Here's just a few additional reasons why teams commit to a new roster:
■ lack / need for a proper shot-caller within the roster
■ lack of motivation / ambition in some players
■ personality conflicts within the teams that can't be bridged
■ different approaches to the game between different "groups" within a team
■ different ideas about work ethic in general (schedules, time commitments etc.)
No team that I know of makes roster-swaps lightly. Most changes are discussed for weeks. At the BlizzCon Finals in 2017 there were several teams in multiple regions that discussed severe changes to their lineups and ended up not following through with it because they did not think the changes would be beneficial in the end or tried to overcome the existing problems internally. Decisions about roster changes are not easy and in the end every teams wants to make sure they emerge better than before to set themselves up in the best way possible for the upcoming year. It's also important to understand that especially the top teams within a region can trigger big changes in the entire region when they commit to a change:
Most of the European that did not make it to BlizzCon used the last few weeks to at least think about potential changes. Some already made the decision to let players go and tried out new ones. But very few of them (if any) actually committed to a new lineup yet. And the reason for this is very simple: most teams are waiting to see what happens with the three teams that went to BlizzCon.
If DIG, FNC and Expert don't change any players then the roster changes for 2018 would probably be very minimal. If on the other hand only one of these three teams changes players everything changes. The top three teams are in a situation where they can basically approach any player of the remaining HGC teams and make them an offer that very few would refuse. At the same time the players leaving one of the Top 3 would be highly sought after. You can see how this will immediately create a lot of change within the region, since very team strifes of course to head into 2018 with the strongest team possible to increase their chances to qualify for the HGC Offline events.
Many of you will already be aware of all of these things. But I'm always concerned when I read comments on Reddit, Twitter or Twitch where people have a very negative attitude towards changes and oftentimes attribute them to the wrong reasons. A lot of changes will happen and I personally believe that it's a good thing. The scene has matured and the teams don't make any of these decisions lightly. Yes, some of the new rosters will fail, but others will succeed and overall I personally am sure that the regions will come out stronger than before! It's going to be an exciting few weeks that lead into 2018 and and an even more exciting HGC 2018! Our first year of HGC has been an amazing adventure and I'm very excited to see what 2018 brings :)