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Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4 delayed amid leadership changes at Blizzard

Blizzard Entertainment announced delays for Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4 during an earnings call earlier today. The company presented a slide that provided an update on its creative pipeline, which explained that content planned for next year would need “more development time to reach its full potential” due to changes in “key creative roles.”

Diablo IV and Overwatch 2 delayed

— Stephen Totilo (@stephentotilo) November 2, 2021

“These are two of the most eagerly anticipated titles in the industry, and our teams have made great strides toward completion in recent quarters,” reads the slide. “But we believe giving the teams some extra time to complete production and continue growing their creative resources to support the titles after launch will ensure that these releases delight and engage their communities for many years in the future.”

Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4 didn’t have definitive release dates. However, fans still had hope that the games would release sometime during 2022. In fact, the presentation mentioned that recent changes would mostly affect content for “next year,” so it’s possible that the two titles were slated for a 2022 release before the Activision Blizzard shake-up. At this point, the games will likely be in development until 2023.

It’s unclear what leadership shifts the company was referring to in its announcement. However, Jenn Oneal also said she was stepping down from her position as co-leader in a blog post on the company website the same day. She will transition into a new position before leaving the company at the end of the year. That leaves Mike Ybarra as the sole lead at a company already in hot water for its toxic company culture.

“I am doing this not because I am without hope for Blizzard,” Oneal wrote in her goodbye. “I’m inspired by the passion of everyone here, working toward meaningful, lasting change with their whole hearts. This energy has inspired me to step out and explore how I can do more to have games and diversity intersect, and hopefully make a broader industry impact that will benefit Blizzard (and other studios) as well.”

Blizzard reps didn’t specify when fans could expect to see more content related to Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4. Other leadership doesn’t seem to have publicly acknowledged Oneal’s imminent departure.

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