Recently Overwatch Game Director Jeff Kaplan came under fire during an interview with Game Informer. Kaplan remarked about how there is a possibility for Overwatch heroes to get “retired” after the roster reaches a certain size or to help balance the current meta.
“One of the other nice parts about our business model is that we’re not dependent on releasing a new hero to keep development going. That means that we don’t have the pressure to release heroes when it might not be the right decision for the game; we’re able to release heroes when players are ready for something new or it’s right for the meta to shift a little bit. We don’t have to do it just because we’re trying to push the business model forward.”
This, of course, caused havoc among the various forums, Facebook groups, and Reddit pages as they criticized the concept of their favorite heroes going away. Rightfully so, as the idea of removing a character from a fully priced game down the line would be an awful practice and tank the longevity of this shooter. Since some players will only choose one character, to have that hero possibly vanish from the game entirely would be dreadful.
However, in the main forum post on the official Overwatch website, Kaplan responded to the criticism in an attempt to quell the fears and gossip.
We don’t have any plans to retire any heroes. The interviewer asked if there was a possibility that this could ever happen and I “left the door open”. The original poster in this thread did not even link to the original article but rather to an article quoting the article in question.
We’re not even remotely thinking about retiring heroes right now or anytime in the foreseeable future.
I think this thread is making a mountain out of a molehill.
Now, this doesn’t definitively prove that they wouldn’t ever consider it, but after all this backlash it would be hard to believe that Kaplan would ever bring up the idea again. One can hardly blame the community for reacting in such a manner, especially since the game has an incredibly dedicated fanbase. Yet, it looks like our favorite heroes are safe for now and in all likelihood, the rest of Overwatch’s existence.