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Blizzard does not make more skins for MWPs for the Overwatch League



Zarya

The Zarya “Alien” skin was removed from Overwatch shortly after Jay “Sinatraa” Won, the MVP it is based on, was accused of sexual assault.
Screenshot: Snowstorm / Kotaku

After this year, the Overwatch League will no longer make special skins to honor the league’s MVP. Earlier today, the Overwatch League announced the release of two special Overwatch shine celebrates San Francisco Shock’s second championship victory and Byung-sun “Fleta” Kim earns the 2020 MVP award. But hidden in the announcement on the Overwatch League website was this little warning:

Do not miss it, as this is the last time a skin is made for the Overwatch League MVP.

The special player rails started back in 2019, when the league released a special brand of cosmetics in memory of the talents of last year’s MVP. Sung-hyeon “JJoNak” Bang earned the first such skin, a sleek looking squid theme Zenyatta, for his talents as the league’s deadliest supporter. In 2020, Jay “Sinatraa” won the Won League’s second MVP, earning one alien-themed Zarya look.

Right after Won’s skin was released he left the Overwatch League to pursue a career in professional Valorant, but his skin remained. However, after an ex-girlfriend issued a statement claiming Won her sexually and emotionally, Overwatch League released its own statement that it would remove Wons Zarya skin and issue credit for anyone who wanted a refund.

Blizzard has also made the video announcing the skin private, deleted tweets, and appears to have removed references to the skin from overwatchleague.com. Won was suspended from both his Valorant team and any future Valorant professional fights pending investigation.

It is currently unknown why the Overwatch League would end the tradition of assigning special skins to the MVPs. This may be because the rails are designed to showcase the personality and signature hero of the winning MVP and as such are a kind of lasting representation of them in the game. By eliminating MVPs, Blizzard can protect itself against a future where it may have to distance itself from other problematic MVPs.

Kotaku has reached out to Blizzard for comment.

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