Overwatch Executive Producer Chacko Sonny Follows Jeff Kaplan in Leaving Blizzard

Nathan Birch
Overwatch 2

More bad news today for the Overwatch team and the seemingly-troubled Overwatch 2, as the franchise’s longtime executive producer Chacko Sonny has reportedly left Blizzard. This departure comes amid bruising accusations of discrimination and harassment at Activision Blizzard and only months after Overwatch director and franchise figurehead Jeff Kaplan left the company.

According to a report from Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier, Sonny informed his team of his departure this past Friday. Sonny is said to be well-respected within Blizzard, and it doesn’t seem like him leaving can be traced to any personal misdeeds, as has been the case with some other recent Blizzard departures. Of course, given everything going on, it’s not difficult to understand why he might be looking for a new workplace even if he hasn’t been personally implicated in anything.

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Sonny was said to be a “stabilizing force” for the Overwatch team following Kaplan’s surprise departure. What this might mean for Overwatch 2, is anyone’s guess. The game is rumored to targeting the first half of 2022, and indeed, the next season of the Overwatch League will be played on an “early build” of the game. Whether Blizzard can stick to their timelines without Kaplan or Sonny remains to be seen.

California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has filed suit against Activision Blizzard, alleging gender-based discrimination and sexual harassment at the Call of Duty and World of Warcraft publisher. Activision Blizzard’s official response to the suit accuses the DFEH of “distorted […] and false” descriptions and insists the picture painted is “is not the Blizzard workplace of today.” An open letter objecting to the official response was signed by thousands of current and former Acti-Blizz employees, leading to a worker walkout. Acti-Blizz CEO Bobby Kotick would eventually apologize for the company’s initial response, calling it “tone deaf.” Several high-ranking Blizzard employees, including former president J. Allen Brack and Diablo IV and World of Warcraft team leaders have resigned or been fired, with their names being stripped for certain characters. The story has even attracted the attention of the US Federal Government, with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) opening a "wide-ranging" investigation.

Overwatch 2 is currently without a release date and platforms have not been announced.

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