Iconic Overwatch Hero, Jesse McCree will be changing names to Cole Cassidy starting October 26, in a move to disassociate the name from a ex-Blizzard developer.
Iconic Overwatch hero, cowboy Jesse McCree, will be renaming to Cole Cassidy starting on October 26 alongside a patch on the live Overwatch servers.
The announcement was first made public by Overwatch developers on October 22 as part of Blizzard’s broader plan to remove references to real-life developers and former employees.
The Overwatch hero was originally named after a real-life Blizzard developer named Jesse Mccree. However, once it was known that the developer had been involved in the sexual harassment lawsuit, complications arose. The ex-Blizzard developer was heavily implied to be directly involved with the Blizzard 2013 Cosby Group chat.
Blizzard to rename Overwatch's McCree following sexual harassment lawsuit
In-game characters will no longer be named after employees. Overwatch will receive a new FFA map in September as the developers push back a planned storyline to later this year.
Since that point, many popular figures in the community have been wanting to separate the character from the developer’s actions. It has gotten to a point where many Overwatch casters are refusing to say the heroes name on broadcast, as well as a petition to remove the name. As a result, Blizzard has actively removed any lines directly relating to the name McCree.
And starting October 26, the name, “Jesse McCree”, will no longer be associated with the cowboy as he renames to Cole Cassidy.
Possible references for Cole Cassidy
There are multiple possibilities surrounding the choice behind, “Cole Cassidy”. While it is highly likely that notable outlaw Butch Cassidy is a source of inspiration, there are other possible inspirations. Another reference could be made to Hopalong Cassidy, who was a famous Western cowboy character in the early 1900s.
The original announcement made by the Overwatch team stated there would be more changes as well to the hero. New changes accompanied with the Cole Cassidy name change include a new narrative arc, new story content and likely new voice callouts, yet to be seen.
Blizzard will no longer reference real-life employees
News of a name change for Jesse McCree was announced back in August by the Overwatch development team. In their statement, they made it abundantly clear that the decision was made to, “better represent what Overwatch stands for.”
Now, Blizzard is now making changes to the methods of in-game names. The main change is that they will no longer be referencing real-life developers moving forward. “Going forward, in-game characters will no longer be named after real employees. We will be more thoughtful and discerning about adding real world references in future Overwatch content,” developers said.