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The video game industry has been doing its part to help fight COVID-19, and you can also play a role. The charity events below highlight what you can do to participate in Coronavirus relief while maintaining social distancing guidelines. We’ve also gathered a list of what the industry has done over the past few months to offset the global impact of the current pandemic.
Current COVID-19 Gaming Charity Events and Sales
Here are the currently-running gaming charity events and sales that allow you to help fight COVID-19. Gaming companies are continuously organizing new events to raise funds for Coronavirus relief, so expect to see more of these pop up throughout the year.
CCP Games – Eve Online
CCP Games has reactivated its Plex For Good campaign in Eve Online to assist in COVID-19 relief. This program was introduced to support those affected by the earthquake and tsunami that occurred in the Indian Ocean in 2005. Since then, CCP Games has revived it multiple times, and altogether the charity has raised $600,000.
From now until the end of June 2020, players can donate Plex in-game currency to Plex For Good. CCP Games will then give the equivalent real-world value of the Plex to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. Seeing as you can earn Plex in-game, this is an excellent opportunity for players to put in a little extra time and do a lot of good by doing so.
Riot Games has already donated $1.5 million towards COVID-19 relief in Los Angeles, California, but it isn’t stopping there. In addition to helping source protective gear for medical workers, Riot Games is hosting a 48-hour League of Legends charity stream starting May 29 at 8 PM ET.
Players can tune in to watch exhibition matches and the semifinals and finals for the Mid-Season Cup. Viewers can donate during the marathon stream, and funds received will go to multiple charitable organizations, including ImpactAssets COVID Response Fund and GlobalGiving Coronavirus Relief Fund.
Take-Two (Rockstar Games, 2K, Private Division, Social Point)
Take-Two and its subsidiaries are donating 5% of sales revenue from online games to COVID-19 relief efforts. Through the end of May, 5% of in-game purchases in NBA 2K19, NBA 2K20, Dragon City, GTA Online, and Red Dead Online will go to charities around the world. Additionally, proceeds from the digital sales of The Outer Worlds will be included in these donations.
Previously, 2K and Humble Bundle pared up to offer the Humble Game Together Bundle. All the proceeds from this bundle went to the International Medical Corps to help with that organization’s efforts against COVID-19.
Xbox previously allowed players to use Microsoft Reward points to donate funds to the CDC Foundation. Microsoft has reported that donations have totaled in the hundreds of thousands of dollars so far.
With the success of the initial donation effort, US players can now use Microsoft Reward points to donate towards the United Nations Foundation and GlobalGiving charities.
Past COVID-19 Gaming Charity Events and Sales
The above events are far from the only efforts that the video game industry has made to combat COVID-19. A ton of charitable donations have been made over the last few months as a result of personal contributions and events.
343 Industries – Halo 5 Relief and Recovery REQ DLC
343 Industries donated the funds from the sale of a new DLC pack for Halo 5 to Coronavirus relief. The Relief and Recover REQ pack and a Spartan-themed t-shirt were on offer and generated more than $200,000 that went towards Coronavirus-related charities.
Bethesda donated $1 million to various COVID-19 relief organizations, including UNICEF, Direct Relief, and local efforts.
Bungie’s Guardian’s Heart Fundraiser asked players to donate a minimum of $20 to receive a unique emblem. The studio raised over $780,000, and proceeds went to Direct Relief and towards purchasing supplies for healthcare workers.
The Polish-based studio CD Projekt donated 4 million PLN (around $1 million) to local relief efforts.
Nintendo of America donated 9,500 N95 respirator masks to emergency workers in North Bend, Washington.
Sony has set aside a $10 million fund to help indie developers at risk of closure during the COVID-19 outbreak. The company also started the Play At Home initiative, encouraging PlayStation owners to social distance by giving out free digital copies of Journey and Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection.
Additionally, Sony formed a $100 million fund for Coronavirus relief to be distributed to charities and emergency services, educators, and entertainment professionals out of work due to the virus.