Video games for good: Itch.io launches “Bundle For Ukraine” and raises millions of dollars


from wartime-video-games department

For all the articles we’ve written about the impact of video games on society, I’ve found myself pushing back against the idea that gaming is some terrible thing responsible for all the problems in the world or talking about common IP conflicts. When it comes to the internet in general, well, it’s basically the same thing. But we also have the opportunity to talk about the good that games and the Internet can do.

Which brings us to Itch.io and its brand new “Package for Ukraine.

Yesterday, itch.io launched a set of 1,000 games to raise funds for Ukraine, helping in the midst of Russia’s invasion. It’s only $10, but you can donate any amount you want. Already, he has raised $2 million.

The package is in place for another eight days and it has already reached its first goal of $1 million. The new goal was set at $4 million, just under double what he currently has. If you decide to donate by buy itch.io charity planyou’ll get $6,500 worth of games for as little as $10 while helping those caught up in the conflict.

The charity package actually did even better than reported at the time of writing. You can access the lot via this link, where you’ll see that the project has now raised just under $3 million at the time of this writing. And that, remember, is with a minimum purchase amount of $10, though you can pay more if you want. Most people don’t, of course, and that’s how it always works with pay-per-view setups. In this case, the average contribution is $15, although at least one person has paid $9,000. With over a hundred thousand contributors, there are certainly plenty of people paying more than the minimum required.

What this represents is the world of video games, the internet, and the public coming together to do something good for the world that deserves recognition. Too often, the stories we hear about gaming and the internet go the other way. And if you’re curious where the money is going for that, well…

  • International Medical Corps provides medical assistance in the area. They have very low fundraising overhead (1% of revenue), with 89% of donations going to medical aid and 10% to administration.
  • Children’s voices, a Ukrainian organization that helps children cope with the horrors of war, PTSD, readapt to school and be children again. They also did a lot of impromptu grassroots work during the war, such as helping set up shelters. Our hope is that this war will soon be over, and that they can begin the work of healing the hearts of these children.

As always, you may want to review these organizations to make sure they align with your own values. I certainly haven’t done that research yet.

But the most important point here is what the internet and games can do together in times of need and crisis. There are good stories there. You just have to be careful with them.

Filed Under: ukraine, video games

Companies: itch.io


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