Blizzard Cancels Overwatch Switch Launch Event Amid Ongoing Public Backlash

Blizzard Cancels Overwatch Switch Launch Event Amid Ongoing Public Backlash

The Nintendo New York event has been abruptly cancelled.

Overwatch hits the Nintendo Switch today, but a planned event to celebrate the port has been cancelled following a long week of news in another Blizzard game. Nintendo New York announced last night that its previously scheduled Overwatch launch event has been cancelled by Blizzard.

Announced on social media last night, no formal reason was given for the cancellation. However, a brief glimpse at the replies can give you an idea-many responses are related to the ongoing protests in Hong Kong and Blizzard's suspension of Hearthstone player Chung "Blitzchung" Ng Wai.

Despite Blizzard lightening its punishment against the Hearthstone player after community outcry, it seems like the community is still fairly riled up. It's expanded beyond Hearthstone to other Blizzard games as well; Overwatch's Mei, a Chinese scientist in-universe, has become a symbol for Hong Kong protesters, so that could be a likely reason why Blizzard passed on today's event.

Voice actors from Overwatch were set to meet fans at the store event celebrating Overwatch's Nintendo Switch launch, alongside other festitivites.

The team-based hero shooter comes to Nintendo's hybrid console with gyro and pointer-based controls today, letting you play Lucio Ball in a more portable format. It's also set to target 30 frames per second, in both docked and handheld mode.

After Blitzchung announced he had accepted Blizzard's ruling early this week, hopes might have been high that the controversy was blowing over. But with a last-minute cancellation like this, things are looking rough for BlizzCon in just a few weeks.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Eric Van Allen

News Editor

Eric is a writer and Texan. He's a former contributor to sites including Compete, Polygon, Waypoint, and the Washington Post. He loves competitive games, live music, and travel.

Read this next

Jeff Kaplan Reveals What Convinced Blizzard to Go With Cross-Compatibility for Overwatch 2

Kaplan says not letting Overwatch "die on the vine" took some convincing.

BlizzCon 2019 is Blizzard's Most Crucial Show in Years

The wayward company has a chance to set its tone for the future, for better or worse.

New Overwatch 2 Art Leaks on Blizzard's Website

We may have just learned who Overwatch's next hero is and what WoW's next expansion is called.

Overwatch 2 is Set to Premiere at BlizzCon 2019 - Report

It'll have hero talents and an actual story.

Blizzard's Overwatch Team Says the Nintendo Switch Port Has Been "Eye-Opening"

Bringing the hero shooter to Switch took more than just a visual overhaul.

Blizzard's Troubled 2019 Finds the Once Invincible Studio at a Crossroads

This past year has found Blizzard embroiled in one controversy after another. What does it say about its future?

Overwatch's Mei Becomes Symbol of Protest Following Hearthstone Player's Suspension

Supporters are making fan art of Mei supporting the ongoing protests in Hong Kong.

More News

Half-Life is Back

And it's a VR game.

Amy Hennig is Forming a New Team at the Hollywood Production Company Skydance

The Uncharted co-creator has found a Hollywood-sized backer.

More on Switch

Pokemon Sword and Shield Pikachu - How to Find Pikachu from Let's Go

Here's how to get Pikachu as a reward from Let's Go, in Pokemon Sword and Shield.

Pokemon Sword and Shield Evolution Stone Locations - Where to Find All the Evolution Stones

Here's our full list of Evolution Stone locations in both Pokemon Sword and Shield.

How to Get Mr. Mime and Rime in Pokemon Sword and Shield

Here's how you can get Mr. Mime and Mr. Rime in Pokemon Sword and Shield.

Pokemon Sword and Shield Charmander - How to Get Charmander and Dynamax Charizard

Here's how you can find Charmander in Pokemon Sword and Shield, and evolve it into Dynamax Charizard.

Pokemon Sword and Shield Bike - How to Upgrade Your Bike and Float on Water

Here's how to upgrade the Rotom Bike in Pokemon Sword and Shield, so you can ride it on water.

Pokemon Sword and Shield Polteageist - How to Evolve Sinistea Using the Cracked Pot

Here's how you can get Polteageist in Pokemon Sword and Shield, through evolving Sinistea using a special Cracked Pot item.

More Esports Games

AOC Reveals Her League of Legends Ranking, Which is Actually Higher Than Rick Fox's

Let's get an exhibition match in Summoner's Rift going.

Overwatch Director Jeff Kaplan Just Threw in His Support for Blitzchung

"I think the suspension should be reduced more or eliminated. But that's just me."

Rocket League's New Blueprint System is Psyonix's Solution to Its Loot Box Problem

So long crates and keys, hello blueprints and credits.

Suspended Hearthstone Pro Blitzchung Signs With Esports Team

Chung "Blitzchung" Ng Wai, the player at the center of Blizzard's Hong Kong controversy, is now a player for Tempo Storm.