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Blizzard pays tribute in Overwatch to fan killed in tragic accident

Heroes never die

Overwatch - Lijiang Tower / Wu Hongyu memorial screenshot 1802
Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

The good guys in Overwatch are a group of heroes who band together to protect the world from evil. A new in-game memorial from developer Blizzard Entertainment remembers a Chinese Overwatch fan who died tragically while doing the same.

Wu Hongyu, 20, a student at Guangdong University of Technology in Guangzhou, China, saw someone stealing a classmate's motorcycle on the campus, according to the Guangdong New Express Daily. Wu got on his own bike and attempted to chase the individual, but was severely injured when the two bikes collided; he died from his injuries in a hospital shortly afterward. The police eventually arrested the alleged thief, and the government of Guangzhou posthumously gave Wu a "Courageous Citizen" award for his bravery.

According to a screenshot of a group chat (translated by a Reddit user) between Wu and his friends, Wu had been greatly anticipating the launch of Overwatch. "Is anyone else really waiting for the launch tomorrow?" he asked his friends. Wu died May 23, the day before Overwatch was released.

Lijiang Tower is one of the maps for the Control gametype in Overwatch. As you can see in the screenshot above, Blizzard added the name Hongyu, in Chinese, to one of the spacesuits on the red side of the map. The studio also added the phrase "heroes never die" — one of Mercy's catchphrases — in Chinese to the red banner behind the spacesuits.

A Blizzard representative confirmed the tribute to Polygon, saying, "We added that in remembrance of a brave member of our community."

This isn't the first time Blizzard has done something like this. World of Warcraft is filled with tributes to players who have died over the years, in the form of shrines, quests and nonplayer characters.

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