Gamers around the world are urging developers to help them fight the fire crisis in Australia—through microtransactions, of course.
The movement started on the Overwatch subreddit yesterday. Players asked Blizzard to create firefighter-themed in-game content to raise money to help fight the wildfires raging in Australia. The movement took as an example the Mercy Pink skin that helped to raise over $12 million for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in 2018.
Rainbow Six Siege players suggested that Ubisoft created special skins for its Australian operators, Gridlock and Mozzie. League players suggested making the Tristana firefighter skin available again and redistributing the benefits to charity. Other communities also asked for themed skins to encourage the community to raise money.
So far, none of the publishers have reacted to the requests.
The wildfires in Australia are one of the worst in the country’s history, having burned more than the Amazon and California fires combined—16 million acres of land. They’ve caused 24 deaths and killed a half-billion wild animals since last September. The numbers could keep rising for several months, as over 60 fires remain uncontained.
Other parts of the gaming community are rallying to raise money for the crisis. Gamer Aid Australia and GenerOzity also help to raise money by targetting the gaming community and working with streamers to encourage their fans to donate.
Earlier today, the Australian streamers group The Click Crew hosted a 36-hour charity stream to help raise money for three associations: the NSW Rural Fire Service, Australian Red Cross, and Wires, which rescues native animals. They helped raise over 318,000 AUD ($220,851).