As previously announced, an Overwatch patch that went live today has officially changed its cowboy hero’s name to Cole Cassidy (shortened to just “Cassidy”). The character was known as McCree since the game’s launch in 2015. His full name, “Jesse McCree,” was taken from a former Activision Blizzard level designer.
The real-life Jesse McCree was let go from Blizzard in Aug. amidst news of a lawsuit that California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing was filing against the company. This lawsuit alleged workplace discrimination and abuse, and McCree was among the employees accused of fostering an unsafe workplace and covering up abuse.
Meet Cole Cassidy.
Rides into Overwatch October 26. pic.twitter.com/CT6PmaNXNs
— Overwatch (@PlayOverwatch) October 22, 2021
The hero name change comes after months of speculation around whether Overwatch will keep McCree’s name in the game. Since news of the lawsuit broke, Overwatch League commentators have avoided saying McCree’s name on broadcast, instead substituting it with phrases like “cowboy” or “peacekeeper.”
Blizzard has, thus far, failed to meet the demands set by its employees to improve the company and make it safer for women and minorities. However, members of the Overwatch development team have expressed that they “fought hard” for the Cole Cassidy name change and are glad that it happened.