Another Hearthstone personality has stepped away from the game over Blizzard’s response to a professional player’s Hong Kong protest during a livestream last week. Caster Nathan ‘ThatsAdmirable’ Zamora released a statement last night saying that he supports Chung ‘Blitzchung’ Ng Wai “wholeheartedly.”
Zamora’s statement says that over the past five years “I’ve worked to uphold Blizzard’s foundational, core values - particularly Every Voice Matters. However, in light of recent events regarding Blitzchung, it is with a heavy heart that I must say this: I will not be part of the broadcast team for Hearthstone for the remainder of this Grandmasters seasons, for the Masters Tour in Bucharest, or for BlizzCon.”
“Blitzchung’s actions to support Hong Kong speak to me far more than I could have imagined. It takes courage to stand up for what you believe in, and to make sacrifices in the process. His actions are inspiring to me.”
Zamora closes his statement by saying Hearthstone is his passion, and that he’s lucky to have made it a career: “I cannot compromise my conviction,” and as a result, that he “cannot continue casting the game.”
My statement regarding Blitzchung, Hearthstone Grandmasters, and Blizzard.
— Nathan ‘Admirable’ Zamora (@ThatsAdmirable) October 10, 2019
The statement comes after a similar message from fellow caster Brian Kibler, who Zamora mentions multiple times. Earlier this week, Kibler stepped away from the Grandmasters tour, stating that Blizzard’s actions are “simply not something I can in good conscience be associated with.” Another caster, Simon Welch, told fans this morning that he supports Blitzchung, but will continue “to support an incredible game and an incredible team at the ground level.”
Since banning Blitzchung from the game and firing the two casters associated with the broadcast, Blizzard has faced widespread criticism, with many players saying they’ll be boycotting some of the studio’s biggest titles, and others attempting to turn Overwatch hero Mei into a symbol of the Hong Kong protests.
After a week of controversy surrounding its decision to boot Hearthstone pro Chung “Blitzchung” Ng Wai from a tournament and suspend him for a year for delivering a pro-Hong-Kong message during an official broadcast, Blizzard has finally made a statement about the situation. It plans to allow Blitzchung to collect his prize money after all and reduce his suspension.