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How the Video Game Industry Is Fighting Back Against COVID-19

As COVID-19 continues to plague countries around the world, more corporations are doing what they can to fight against the virus. The video game industry is no different. Some of the biggest names in gaming are taking a stand to combat the epidemic, financially and through community-oriented events.

On March 31, Rockstar Games posted a status on Facebook saying it will donate 5 percent of its revenue from GTA Online and Red Dead Online to COVID-19 relief efforts. All the donations will go to local communities and businesses devastated by the outbreak. This amount might not sound like much, but GTA V made over $500 million in 2019 alone — 5 percent is a decent amount of money. Combine that with 5 percent of Red Dead Online’s revenue and it adds up fast.

Related: GameStop’s COVID-19 Response Could Be the End for the Retailer

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt developer CD Projekt Red also donated some of its earnings to COVID-19 research. The company gave 4 million PLN (around $950,000) to Wielka Orkiestra Swiatecznej Pomocy, a charity in the developer’s native country of Poland that raises money for elderly care and pediatric advancement. Half of the money came from the CD Projekt Red itself, while the other half came from the company’s main shareholders and management. The company later released a statement thanking the medical industry for its service.

Big-name publishers and developers are not the only ones pitching in. Indie video game company Ndemic Creations donated $250,000 to the Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization’s (WHO) COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund. 

Related: Quarantined Gamer Keeps Busy by Projecting Games Onto an Apartment Building

Ndemic Creations’ claim to fame is its popular mobile game Plague Inc. The game’s creator, James Vaughn, said he never imagined the real world resembling a game of Plague Inc. He also never pictured people playing it during an actual pandemic. Vaughn went on to say that Ndemic Creations is proud to support the WHO and CEPI’s research of COVID-19.

Donating money isn’t the only way video game companies are fighting the virus. The 2020 NBA season has been canceled due to COVID-19. 2K is trying to fill the void in NBA fans’ hearts by hosting a “Players-Only” tournament of NBA2K20. The 10-day tournament will consist of 16 NBA players competing against each other, including superstars like Donovan Mitchell and Kevin Durant. The tournament will air on ESPN April 3 and 2k Games hopes the tournament will break up the boredom brought on by the quarantine.

Related: PS5 Launch Will See No ‘Notable’ Impact From COVID-19, Says Sony

The #PlayApartTogether campaign is another way the video game community is fighting against COVID-19. Eighteen different companies from across the video game industry joined forces to help push the campaign, including Activision Blizzard, Riot Games, Twitch and many others. The #PlayApartTogether campaign promotes the WHO’s guidelines to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 through social distancing, personal hygiene and other sanitary practices to keep gamers healthy. #PlayApartTogether seems to be gaining traction every day. 

As the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise throughout the world, it is nice to see the video game industry doing its part to combat the virus. It makes video game fans feel like the companies actually care about their consumers. Hopefully, more publishers and developers will join the fight soon. 

KEEP READING: Sony Pledges $100 Million to Aid COVID-19 Relief

Video game companies are doing what they can to stop the spread of COVID-19. Many are donating to charities to help fight the virus.

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