Blizzard Entertainment has officially canceled their launch event for Overwatch on the Nintendo Switch, which was supposed to take place at Nintendo’s New York Store on Wednesday, October 16. It was actually Nintendo themselves that tweeted the cancellation, while Blizzard hasn’t made any remark in regards to it.
Please be aware that the previously announced Overwatch launch event scheduled for Wednesday, 10/16 at NintendoNYC has been cancelled by Blizzard. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
— Nintendo NY (@NintendoNYC) October 15, 2019
Overwatch launches on the Switch today, which was announced during September’s Direct Presentation. This also coincides with the annual Halloween Terror Event that also starts today, and includes a plethora of new sprays, emotes, and skins. The real attraction of this however is the always fun to play through Jukenstein’s Revenge, where players need to work together and take out Junkenstein and his monsters in a horde-style mode. Players will have to wait a bit though, as the event will be patched into the main game later today.
Neither company gave a reason as to why the event was canceled, but the recent events that the Blizzard has been going through might have been a huge factor. To say that it hasn’t been a good week for Blizzard Entertainment is an understatement. The company is easily facing the biggest community revolt in it’s 28 year history, as they suspended Hearthstone player Chung “blitzchung” Ng Wai for advocating support for his native Hong Kong. This set off a chain reaction of mythic proportions that has since transcended the video game community.
Blizzard couldn’t ignore such a situation and tried to calmly resolve it with an official statement and changed blitzchung’s suspension to six months instead of a year, as well as giving him the prize money he won in the Grandmaster tournament. This prompted blitzchung to respond with his own statement, keeping a positive stance while considering his own future in the esport. Despite what looks like an amicable end for both parties, this is far from over in the eyes of the fans.
People all over the world have now vowed to boycott all Blizzard products, and some have even planned to organize protests at this years BlizzCon, which takes place in two weeks in Anaheim California. It’s even gotten to the point where fans have adopted Overwatch hero Mei as their symbol of hope, complete with fan art of her as a Hong Kong protester. Either way you extrapolate this, it’s bad news all around for the company. This recent action that they’ve taken illustrates that they’re hesitant to hold public events, and in just a short couple of weeks we’ll really see how they handle it during the weekend of BlizzCon.