As you might recall, Blizzard announced it would be changing the name McCree - the popular cowboy gunslinger in its team-based first-person shooter, Overwatch.
In case you missed the original announcement, the character was named after one of the now ex-employees linked to the recent harassment and discrimination lawsuit - brought against Activision Blizzard by the state of California.
So, what's McCree's new name? It's now Cole Cassidy. Here's the full backstory:
"The first thing a renegade loses is their name, and this one gave up his a long time ago.
Running from his past meant running from himself, and each passing year only widened the divide between who he had been and what he had become. But in every cowboy's life there comes a time when he has to stop and make a stand.
To make this new Overwatch better - to make things right - he had to be honest with his team and himself. The cowboy he was rode into the sunset, and Cole Cassidy faced the world at dawn."
As part of this, Blizzard will be providing all players with a free BattleTag name change:
As noted above, the new name Cole Cassidy will be added to Overwatch next week on 26th October, and it will obviously carry over to the upcoming release, Overwatch 2.
You can learn more about this name change in our previous story:
It’s not exactly coming even slightly close to making up for the horrific abuse going on in Blizzard. Still, as I understand it, many of the staff who were on the receiving end of such abuse were pushing for this change. So it’s a start. A very very very small start.
@nessisonett I disagree, this is not the start, these kind of useless changes should be done at the end. Blizzard is doing this instead of actually doing anything. They think doing this will distract people enough from all they've done, and they're probably right, unfortunately.
This name change surely will fix the damage this company has done to their employees.
He will still forever be McRee
@PcTV Ok. That’s your opinion.
Cole Cassidy is a pretty BA name
I get why the name was changed, but couldn't they have picked something a bit better than this? Not to mention.. yeah, this doesn't make up for anything Blizzard did, and it feels much more like a distraction from the lawsuit than anything.
They really couldn't have picked a better name?
They must REALLY want to keep that Cosby room with all the damage control they are doing.
Um why change his name?🤨
@Greatluigi long story short, the dude was named after a guy who wasn't a great person, and they changed it due to a lot of secret stuff about harassment and mistreatment of others coming to light, without actually addressing the real issues, and shredding evidence that was supposed to be investigated.
"You think we should change the environment of our workplace and replace the problematic people? Maybe offer therapy or benefits to the victims? Make sure this isn't a thing that could happen again?"
"(burps) NAHHH we should rename a fictional character, that makes up for EVERYTHING"
Oh man guys, they just renamed mcree! What did blizzard do again? Being sarcastic with first 2 sentences, but if there is anybody that thinks what happened at blizzard isn't as bad now because they changed a fake characters name, you need some help.
Oh wow, that backstory is spectacularly awful.
That's incredibly stupid.
Removed - trolling
Naming characters after developers is kinda dumb anyways. If it's a little side character that gets a minute of screen time fine...but one of your main heroes? It's like getting a tattoo of your boyfriend/girlfriend only to separate later on. Then you've got a tattoo of your ex on your body. Well, at least they learned their lesson of what could happen with ol Jessie McCree. Yessiree that name'll go down in history.
I don't think this really fixes anything, like throwing a single cup of water on a burning building... Also there are thousands of streams, videos and merch where the original name is present, it's already immortalized.
TBH, I actually like it better. Well done, BLIZZARD. Now if you can curb all of the harassment in house you'll be all set!
It's actually a pretty good name, and has a memorable ring to it.
Too bad it does absolutely nothing to resolve the deeply rooted issue of abuse behind the doors of Activision/Blizzard 🙃
@Longondo that it is, Missile, that it is
Personally, this feels like a cop-out but there's nothing I can say or do to change that.
Wow they really came up with a generic name like Cole lol. Also a name change accomplishes absolutely nothing and just serves as a corporate scapegoat for the bare minimum of “we are listening” lol
"Running from his past meant running from himself"
Tell me you're Overwatch suits projecting your guilt without telling me you're Overwatch suits projecting your guilt.
Do people not realize that the people who make Overwatch and the heads at Blizzard who allowed the toxic working environment are two different sets of people? The Overwatch dev team is simply taking the measures they can to distance themselves from someone who was a horrible person in real life. They can't radically change the entire work environment for everyone else at the company overnight. Yes, Blizzard as a whole needs to change but this is all the OW team is capable of doing right now.
Why is this so hard to understand?
Wow, This is how you say sorry? by changing the name of a character I didn't even know Had a name based off of him, How about making some change? And I'm still calling him Mc Cree.
Looks like Mad Dog McCree.. is that why they changed his name? Lol
This name feels a bit tacked on. This is the first full named character on the roster. It sounds like Coles mother is calling him for putting his muddy play clothes in a washer full of white linens. The name change was the right thing but like they did with Jessie mccree, they need to shorten it.
This world is lame...
Well, I guess this whole episode isn’t enough to ruin the whole world for me. 😛 (But it feels lame sometimes.)
[Running from his past]
You mean exactly what Blizzard is doing?
I always assumed it was a reference to the Sega CD game Mad Dog McCree. I mean seriously changing the name does absolutely nothing about the abuse that occured and continues to occur in the company.
Um why did they change it again?
Because they think they are too big to fail and use distractions like this to cover up the decaying rot that has been exposed in that shell of a studio.
@SalvorHardin ah so a smoke screen then?
Whoever wrote that back story needs to be struck in the head with a rubber mallet 3 times (exactly) for writing such tripe.
Agreed entirely. People like to think of a corporation as a single entity since it has a single name. But they're different people, capable of doing different things. The people burning evidence are not the same people on the OW dev team.
In fact, to date, there haven't been any allegations towards anyone on the OW team. It may happen, it may not - doesn't change my point, which is to illustrate that this is a large company with different people in it. ***** on people who are trying to make a positive change, because separate people did terrible things, makes changing the world a 0-sum game.
That said, while I think Cole Cassidy is a badass name, it's unfortunate that it's shared by a historical figure known for his hatred of women. That's, uh, something I might've looked into, Blizzard? Granted, you could probably pick any name and find someone in the past who had that name who was a terrible guy, but this is a bit, I don't know, on the nose?
To be fair, Cassidy is an extremely common surname in Ireland. It's a bit different when you name someone directly after you're working with as opposed to making up a name that doesn't reference anyone in particular. Plus, Butch Cassidy was born nearly 200 years ago and isn't a part of our current culture anymore. Like you said, any name can be linked to someone unsavory from the past (Benedict [Arnold], Ivan [The Terrible], Napoleon, etc). Just don't name someone directly after someone alive.
It's like writing a book and trying to think of the name first. I'm sure this change means nothing to the wider audience and those wronged, I just can't believe this would appease them a great deal.
I think it’s a bad name. He will always be McCree nothing else. I bet no one will call him by this new name nearly ever. Only new players.
ah so you will talk about blizzard but not review their games?
Finally, harassment defeated!
ActiBlizz is such a joke of a company
The backstory is laughable. Isn't the entire point that people CANT outrun their past no matter how hard try try?
ANY STORY ABOUT THIS ends up with their past coming back to haunt them.
Why reference the name change in the backstory? This reads to me as though the character changed his name to avoid the harassment lawsuits.
Ironic Blizzard purports to be this great woke company yet behind the scenes not so much.
How on the nose is that description.
@PiplupJ It is a bit on the nose.
what @WallyWest said
@PcTV Unfortunately, "useless changes" like this one are the FASTEST ones they can implement. I may not like Blizzard, nor support the toxic environment they were committed to, but lets be honest here. Which takes longer; a legal battle with the state, a name change, or a massive restructuring of the entire game company?
OF COURSE they are name changing, replacing offensive assets, and doing everything they possibly can IN THE MOMENT to save face. It is just so much quicker, will help with their court case, and it will generate good headlines for the press.
Will they stop getting accused of not doing enough? Of course not. It's too late. A person took her life. Many women worked at blizzard in fear for who knows how long. Other men who worked at Blizzard that didn't like the immaturity were probably afraid out of fear of being harassed as well, and the LGBTQ+ harassment was off the charts. Of course they get the backlash. When you've spent so long being toxic alpha male wannabes, even the little changes aren't enough. I absolutely understand that. Just want to show a bit of perspective here.
Hope your day is wonderful and well.
@Greatluigi No-one's name has been changed. The characters name is now and has always been Cole Cassidy. The erroneus name previously connected with this character was derived from an unperson. Not only does this person not exist, they never existed, and all records now deemed erroneus must be corrected to reflect this. Please remember that to invoke the name of an unperson is thoughtcrime. Please remain in your home and someone will soon be contacting you for reeducation. All hail Big Brother.
We really do have the two horrible ends of the spectrum posting here don’t we…. The “I knoW everything and never done anything wrong and hold everyone to account crew” and the “oh no “cancel culture” is horrible and there are no issues in society apart from the horrible treatment white men get”
Firstly those that were involved in the said abuse asked for this name change. We can’t then have a go for them doing it.
What I will say - obviously the abuse we are talking about is abhorrent and changes are needed. All the high and mighty posters here I have two questions…
1 - have you ever been abused in ways like this?
2 - do you call out wrong doing in your own life whenever you see it?
If you answer no to either of those please work on yourself before being so vocal and demanding more. If we all lead by example instead of simply calling out others real change will come.
If you say - I don’t see wrongdoings happening to call it out - you are massively part of the problem.
I can’t comment if they need to do more because I don’t know on the ground what they are doing. It’s a shame that abuses are so common place. With so many heroes online society should be sorted by now.
Try calling out bad behaviour in real life and not just online behind a keyboard.
For anyone that answered yes to victim of abuse. My thoughts go out to you and I hope you have got the support you need and I hope the cause of the abuse has been addressed. This is though unfortunately unlikely.
Thats the weirdest name ive seen in a while
Imagine yourself in the place of the abused workers at Blizzard that had to keep working on and with "Jesse McCree".
This may not be the change you wanted, but it isn't nothing.
I hope this is the first step for Blizzard in addressing the issue
Yeah, it’s great that the oppressed workers got the name change they wanted, but honestly why even bother with that backstory? The new name too… jeez, did they have a think tank looking for a name that is simultaneously generic as a cowboy name and a video game name?
Feel like they should’ve just killed the character off in total and replaced him with a new character that was essentially the same character, but slightly different. Feel like we’d have less to nitpick in that case.
@WhiteUmbrella O_o O-okay?
This is the dumbest thing.
@Stocksy it's time to start empowering people and not just infantalizing them. I'm not saying there aren't people that don't need help. But we have created a culture where people want to be the victim. There was a story from last week of college students at a 80k a year school feeling oppressed because a white man was hired to fix the radiator in their dorm.
good lord, it took them this long to do the bare minimum?
honestly the ultra woke culture they have there in terms of how they police the community makes me not really care for them all too much. It seems people on all sides of their work culture are toxic, so ***** em. Let them bow to CCP.
@GuitarAnthony Honestly that's true for most of the woke community. It's all a façade. Or like how I like to call them; woke for the press or tokenism. This is also why Communism can never really work.
@SonOfVon for real though, why won't they review diablo 2
Jesse McCree is an awful name for a real human being. He’s the one who should change his name.
@HarvestGoddess I agree this is the fastest thing they could do. But I disagree they'll do anything to fix (what even is possible to fix) after they've done these small things. The reason is that, given the information that has been leaked of Activision/Blizzard's response to the reports of abuse is avoiding, union-busting, denying, protecting abusers, amongst other things. They really only fired people when the evidence and the response was too big and they were left with no other choice. And even then, they allowed them to just look like they "stepped down", "quit", etc. To help these abusers save face.
They'll fight to actively protect abusers and leave victims hanging until the bitter end.
And thank you, that's very nice of you. I hope you have a good day aswel!
@GuitarAnthony The people who virtue signal the hardest are usually the worst behind the scenes.
Blizzard and many other high-end-crunch-companies just suck for a plethora of reasons. This name change doesn't matter one way or another. No one cares and no one cared if it stayed the same. This is not even lipservice. This is our society in a nutshell. "Oh look there's abuse left and right!" - "Here's a pot-plant with a diverse set of friends and a mysterious past." Media: "Yes!"
@ATaco Noob Saibot says hi!
Gamers are so holier than thou, I bet almost every fan keeps giving this company money and just whines even more. At least they get to ride the high horse again, and knowing gamers it will last a decade. Too much water, horse armor, the Fable creator everyone hates, Miyamoto ruined this franchise, EA sucks blah blah blah
Sorry but I will still call him McCree
A lot of white knighting in here for people that will still give blizzard money for the next big (insert remake/remaster here) that comes along..Guess that's what the internet is for though.
This is the lamest “woke penance” I’ve heard of yet.
It’s like cancelling Forrest Gump because he’s named after Nathan Bedford Forrest, founder of the KKK.
For a long time I thought we customers were abused by them financially with a lot of their schemes. Had no idea the employees were getting the absolute worst of it.
There’s nothing they can do to clear their name after what they let happen for years. Best they can do is fire every single abuser and offer a big compensation package to the victims.
I know this isn’t a surprise, but the Twitter comments on this are down right dumb and shocking.
@GuitarAnthony It's almost always the virtue signalers that have the most to hide.
I think this is a really poorly conceived name and stinks of laziness among the staff. Let's take the easiest name we can find "cole" and slap some cowboy outlaw sounding name from history on it like "cassidy".
Sad part is no one is going to remember who Jesse McCree was beyond the character in OW one days suddenly having a name change. It'll be more forgotten than the fact that FF14 was a failed MMO that was relaunched. Yes that is a thing. Literally played with a free company that hadn't a clue about this the other day.
Sure the many behind the name did bad things. However he lost any claim to that name the day overwatch unveiled this cowboy rogue outlaw with a shady blackwatch past to the world. Let's keep in mind here that not everyone who plays OW knows the lore well enough to quote it back to someone, let alone tell you the history behind that lore that got characters their names. Ultimately this was a pointless and useless gesture and it just created a ton of Jessie McCree merchandise that is now going to be worth a whole hell of a lot of money in 20 years for having a different name for the character than what will be featured in future merchandise. If anything you've just built a monument that will make people wealthy off of someone else's misery. So yes Blizzard, great job of not addressing the actual problem. I get the staff might have asked for this. That is the only reason I'm even remotely ok with this change. The real question with the high turn over a lot of studios have, how long are these people really going to stick around before you have to address the next lot of developers. I think its more important to focus on protecting the future, then worrying about the past. Seems to have lost the plot and the perspective.
But the name still sucks. I probably would have been more satisficed with Clint Cob.
@TheRedComet In a better world, sadly
That would have all already happened in a better world.
There were also World of Warcraft characters and a city in Wow named Mac'Aree named after this guy (and most of the names are similar to Jessie McCree. There's even a Jenny McCree). I was actually hoping that Jesse McCree was not his real name since it sounds made up and western like Mad Dog McCree.
@NotSoCryptic The only logical reason I can come up with Blizzard changing the name is so the guy can't come after Blizzard for royalties for using his name. Everyone I know where confused as to why they changed his name and quite honestly if it weren't for Blizzard announcing that they were changing his name nobody would have known that he was named after a Blizzard employee.
I still don't associate a game character to someone IRL just ebcause of a name. I doubt anyone that plays OW for more than 5min will keep calling the cowboy McCree.
@Liam_Doolan There is a typo. At the end of the article you call him Cold Cassidy lol.
Crisis Averted, Abuse gone!
Women are now fruit bowls and pillows and Jesse mcCree, Cole Cassidy.
Blizzard surely knows how to make an ass out of themselves over and over again.
Granted to some degree we, as customers and media, are part to blame as well, to the extend that glorifying these developers like rockstars, which is also a questionable practice, gotten their egos so inflated they deemed themselves special and untouchable.
This is not anti-consumer or capitalism, spend your money and buy what you like, but a cautionary tale that those who make the things we like are flawed human beings like ourselves, power corrupts and the weak will always fall first.
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