Here we go again with the “games are evil” nonsense, right? We’ve had that agenda pushed in our faces before, and Massively Uplifting is pushing back! We know the real story here: Gaming can be good for you, and gamers have got the goodness going on! We see you out there doing good in big and small ways, individually and collectively. And we’re proud of all the kindness, compassion, generosity, and outright awesome humanity that you show for your fellows in the world.
This past month has been no different, with a number of examples of charitable giving from Paladins, SMITE, and Warframe players, communities drawing together to mourn and celebrate lost members in Artix Entertainment and a Star Wars RP server, and resilience in the face of adversity. So thank you! Thank you for being you. We celebrate and admire you.
TennoCon 2019 wasn’t the only studio-sponsored event that raised money for charity last month. Hi-Rez Studios has been a corporate sponsor supporting Child’s Play since 2015, raising $224,000 that first year through the sale of a SMITE holiday chest that gave a special skin. In 2018, Paladins joined in as well with its own offering for players. For 2019, the combined total donated from the special sales was $419,446! That brings the total of funds donated to Child’s Play over the year by Hi-Rez and its player communities to over $1 million US.
Don’t think that this partnership will end anytime soon either; Hi-Rez seems dedicated to this special yearly tradition. As CEO Stew Chisam put it, “We love that our fans stand by Child’s Play’s mission of helping kids feel better by playing games. Philanthropy is an important part of Hi-Rez’s identity and we’re so lucky to have players that support doing good in the world with an awesome partner like Child’s Play. To know we helped fund a gaming and technology specialist position for our local Child’s Play Hospital, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta brings this even closer to home.”
— Hi-Rez Studios (@HiRezStudios) July 2, 2019
A single act of kindness
We know about the huge chunk of change Digital Extremes’ raised for the Canadian Mental Health Association last month, showing that collectively the Warframe community is a darn generous bunch! But that goodness and generosity toward others is also individual and personal; sometimes, those helping hands reach out to other hands.
One example that just epitomizes the spirit of giving at TennoCon comes to us from ArgonSix. While heading back to the hotel room while at the convention, ArgonSix came across a homeless man who wanted some change for coffee. ArgonSix, who had just purchased a coffee and donut, didn’t just hand them over but took the time to speak with the man and learn his name. See a need, fill a need can be as simple as that!
The AdventureQuest family, the older sibling of AQ3D, lost a master of Legends and Lore last month. Falerin — who went from sharing his IRC chat server with the devs for weekly launch nights to writing for the game to becoming a famous LoreMaster mentoring other authors — passed away on July 23rd, 2019. Artix Entertainment posted an announcement to players, sharing Falerin’s history with the community and offering ways everyone who desired to could pay their respects, including establishing a special place where folks can play through Falerin’s most iconic stories released during his 14 years of writing.
“Share your memories of your favorite stories and moments by posting on Twitter using the hashtag #Falerin,” the studio wrote. “The family would love to know how his stories have impacted you. If it’s been a while since you’ve logged into the original AdventureQuest, it might be fun to go play through some of his iconic adventures. The team will be putting up a special hub for you to access his most iconic events as well as a commemorative in-game item, the LoreMaster’s Tome.”
Remembering the fallen, Stormtrooper-style
Gaming communities can become really close, and even when you never meet in real life, you mourn the loss of one of your own. One Reddit user shared how over 100 other players on a custom Garry’s Mod Star Wars roleplaying server came to honor a community member who had passed away. And in true Star Wars form, many memorial attendees came in full clone trooper regalia.
Gamer’s got guts and glory
Tell us if you’ve heard this one before: A gamer is a deadbeat sitting in mom’s basement eating Cheetos and eschewing the whole work and social scene — and even hygiene — in favor of endless hours glued to a game. That description is meant to belittle and dismiss all gamers. We know it isn’t accurate (OK, maybe once in a while it is), but here’s a story that puts that whole notion to shame, showcasing the resilience and strength of one of our own.
As readers will recall, NBA 2K League competitive player Timothy “oLARRY” Anselimo was shot four times by the gunman who perpetrated a mass shooting at the Madden NFL tournament in Jacksonville, Florida, last summer. He sustained damage to his right hand, necessitating a change in how he holds his controller. Anselimo had stated he was unsure if he would return to playing — but he did. And now, Anselimo has won ESPN’s ESPY for Best Esports Moment 2019 for his return.
We’re glad the tragedy didn’t keep you down, Anselimo! Keep fighting, and keep winning. Thanks for your inspiration. And cheers to the community for voting in this win, highlighting this accomplishment of perseverance.
Wouldn’t you love to just obliterate this gaming-makes-you-bad-and-violent mumbo jumbo right now? We know that it’s not. The above examples are specifics of the goodness of gamers, but gaming itself is also good for you in general ways. While nothing in this list is a real surprise to us, we can add this article 15 Surprising Benefits of Playing Video Games to our arsenal of things to send to folks who just don’t get it. We’ve already addressed gaming’s role in helping those with autism, social connections, leadership development, and improving decision making skills in a past The Soapbox article, but this lists adds more fuel to our good-game fire.
For example, did you know video games are medically beneficial? They can help to slow down aging by keeping the mind active. Playing also helps improve balance for multiple sclerosis patients! Researchers are noting that when played in moderation, games also help improve your vision. Action games have shown to improve reading comprehension for those with dyslexia. And surgeons who play video games are less likely to make errors in procedures requiring small incisions! So maybe ask your laparoscopic (small incision) specialist what s/he plays before you go under.
Enjoy more warm fuzzies
That’s not all folks! Check out these other feel-good stories from throughout the month and enjoy even more warm fuzzies.