OVERWATCH 2 REFS, REFS EVERYWHERE…NOT!
- Blizzard is apparently on an Easter egg –erasing binge out of their games
- Overwatch 2’s reference to Jeff Kaplan was apparently snuck out by Blizzard, too
- Lawsuit filed keeps on wreaking havoc in Blizzard’s realm
Ah, lawsuits… the gift that keeps on giving. And Blizzard is kinda like the expert nowadays! And still getting the blunt end of the stick, as you can read below.
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REFERENCES DROPPING LIKE FLIES
The Reddit fandom has been noticing quirky things lately, especially an unpublicized removal of a reference to former Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan from the New York City map of the upcoming sequel. Within the Bastion Rework announcement video for the Overwatch 2 game, you can see the pizza shop called Jeph’s Corner Pizza… without the Jeph.
Basically, the nod to Jeff Kaplan that was there before is no longer ‘nodding’ (yep, that’s me bouncing words off.) They left the pizza shop (because, pizza!) but kicked out the Jeph part because of (drumroll)… The Lawsuit. Yeah, it’s still doing the rounds. And still more references are mentioned in the dropping activities…
LAWSUIT RAVAGES BLIZZARD, STILL
So the “un-nodding” is, in all probability, a part of Blizzard Entertainment’s decision to remove in-game nods to employees because the lawsuit against Activision Blizzard has everything to do with the California Department of Fair Employment (there are some touch-feely situations here that could arise, so who’s judging?)
In any case, since the lawsuit got itself entangled with Blizzard like chewing gum in long hair, there have been changes going on: the company said it would rename Overwatch‘s McCree, for example. McCree was named after a Diablo 4 game designer. Azeroth would also get “inappropriate” references removed, which seems to point specifically at Alex Afrasiabi Easter eggs. Afraisiabi is a former senior creative director who was named in the lawsuit.
REASONS FOR DROPPING JEFF
Blizzard announced Jeff’s departure from the company in April (it came on before the lawsuit tsunami hit Blizzard) but the reasons for Kaplan’s departure are still hazy. A news release from the company and a personal note from Kaplan tried to give off some “Saul Goodman” (s’all’s good, man, for those of you not in the Breaking Bad know) vibes, but it still leaves us with many loopholes. And now Jeff gets his pizza store Jeph removed. The coffee cup with “Jeph” on it and a book under it called “The Green Hills of Stranglethorn,” which is a quest from World of Warcraft designed by Kaplan, still sport an undecided fate in the sequel.
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