Blizzard Cancels The Much-Hyped Nintendo Switch Overwatch Edition Launch Party Amid Their Anti-Hong Kong Statement

Blizzard Cancels The Much-Hyped Nintendo Switch Overwatch Edition Launch Party Amid Their Anti-Hong Kong Statement
Credit: Blizzard via YouTube

Unforeseen consequences apparently continue to batter the Tencent backed corporation of Activision-Blizzard, fresh from the PR nightmare of banning two casters and Hearthstone champion due to a singular pro-Hong Kong statement made on stream by the Hearthstone winner.    Blizzard opted to remove the $500,000 prize purse from player Blitzchung, along with levying a year-long ban from competitive play on the Hong Kong native, after the young player stated ‘Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our age’.

What happened next was beyond Activision-Blizzard’s control; social media exploded internationally, with many calling for a complete consumer-level boycott of all Activision-Blizzard products’. Large swaths of lifelong World of Warcraft subscribers canceled their subscription to the ever-popular MMO, with many more opting to delete their account (and all purchased games) from Blizzard launcher permanently.  The number of cancellations and account deletions was apparently great enough for Activision-Blizzard to reportedly* temporarily disable the option for their PC platform,, and eventually forced them to verbally confront their consumers via their forum, in which they state that their relations with China were not a factor in the punishment handed down.

Ironically, at roughly the same time, they announced on their Chinese forums that they will always “protect the image and pride of China”, and for consumers to expect similar sentences if they use Activision-Blizzard games to voice pro-Hong Kong sentiments.

They apparently presumed that the two forums would never intersect.

This all culminates in today’s newest slice of dystopic pie, where Nintendo announced via their New York City-based storefront that the launch party for Overwatch coming to the Nintendo Switch has been canceled by Blizzard.  Fans of Overwatch have taken to perverting an iconic Chinese character, Mei, into a pro-Hong Kong character, complete with anti-Chinese sentiments and statements, to voice their distaste of the anti-Hong Kong stance that Activision-Blizzard has adopted.  Additionally, popular social media sites have been planning pro-Hong Kong rallies at the upcoming Blizzcon, including cosplaying in Winnie the Pooh costumes to mock Xi Jinping, which has offended China’s president to the point that he has levied a national ban on Winnie the Pooh media.

Excited fans that were planning on going to the Nintendo party for Overwatch launch to meet their favorite voice actors, are no doubt finding themselves both frustrated and disappointed at the sudden withdrawal of the Overwatch Nintendo Switch launch party.

Overwatch will still be released on the Nintendo Switch October 16th, and the cancellation of the launch party is not to be construed as anything beyond that.

*Note: While many consumers stated frustration in suddenly no longer being able to delete their account, Activision-Blizzard vehemently denied that they were blocking users from being able to do so.