Game companies collect donations for Ukraine and cut ties with Russia
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Games have a way of conveying what war is about, and not just from a glory point of view. 11 Bit Studios, the Polish maker of This War of Mine, has created a simulation title This War of Mine to show what civilian survival in war is like. And now the company is donate all profits of This War of Mine and its content across all platforms to support the Ukrainian Red Cross in light of the horrific war in Ukraine.
Storefront GOG also said it will donate all proceeds from next week’s This War of Mine to support Ukraine. On Facebook, Ukrainian developers urged people to donate to the National Bank of Ukraine to support the Ukrainian military. IGN and Axios have stories describing a lot of backlash and donation campaigns. We have also added our own material on reactions to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Our own story noted that there are several thousand game developers in Ukraine working on titles in work-for-hire studios or also on original games. Achievers Hub and UNIT.City Innovation Park compiled a report in 2018 which mentioned 30 newly formed game studios, while Alexey Menshikov of Beatshapers said he was part of the first Ukrainian game studio, Action Forms, in the 1990s.
GSC Game World, which makes the Stalker series in a radioactive Chernobyl, asked its players donations to support the Ukrainian army. The company expected to release Stalker 2: Heart of Chernobyl in the near future.
And Upland, which creates a virtual real estate game based on real-life locations, said it helps its Ukraine-based team find places to live outside the country. Some left last week to help set up an office in Poland, but others are stuck in the cities of Kiev, Mikolev and Lviv.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian startup DMarket said it had severed all relations with Russia and Belarus due to the invasion of Ukraine. He cuts his partners and raises funds from the gaming community through the sale of skins to fight against the Russian invasion. Russian and Belarusian users can withdraw their funds until March 12. After that, the funds will be donated to the Ukrainian army. DMarket no longer works with Russian payment systems and its currency. Players can also donate skins through DMarket.
DMarket said more than 100 DMarket team members and their families have been relocated to Western Europe. But some remained in Ukraine to serve. Game developers are part of the humanitarian crisis forming on Ukraine’s borders as families attempt to flee to Poland and elsewhere.
WePlay Holding also said it has terminated all partnership agreements with Russian companies. As of now, WePlay advertises all brands of Russian origin in its esports broadcasts.
Kiev-based Frogwares, creator of the Sherlock Holmes video games, called everyone help force Putin’s army to withdraw. big boysthe creator of Pandemic Express, also spoke out against the war on Twitter. Ubisoft said he provides assistance to more than 500 members of his team in Ukraine.
Riot Games said it was suspending a Valorant Champions Tour tournament involving teams in Ukraine and Russia. Sengi Games, creator of The Serpent Rogue, also said he wouldn’t be able to answer questions because of the war. Alexey Menshikov, CEO of the 20-person Beatshapers studio in Kyiv, said his team was being evacuated.
Save the Children provides humanitarian aid to children in Ukraine. The United Nations is sending emergency supplies and water to Ukraine, while Project Hope is sending medical supplies. CD Project Redbased in Poland, expressed his own support for his neighboring country.
Bungie is donating all proceeds from the first 48 hours of its Game2Give donation campaign to humanitarian relief efforts in response to the war.
4A games, creator of the Metro series who moved from Ukraine to Malta, said: “We are neither politicians nor superheroes, we are game developers. Our big family includes people from all over the world, and we all want one thing: that the horrors of war never erupt in imaginary worlds.
Polish developer Beetlewing also said donate proceeds from their Slipways game to the Help Ukraine Fund of the Polish Red Cross, until March 3.
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