Indie developer Necrosoft Games has partnered with hundreds of other creators to launch a new fundraising bundle on gaming platform itch.io. The Bundle for Ukraine (opens in new tab)contains 991 games for a minimum donation of $10 / about £7.60 / AU$ 13.70, with all proceeds going to two organizations aiding the humanitarian effort in Ukraine.
The bundle includes several highly acclaimed indie titles, including time-stopping shooter Superhot, narratively-charged platformer Celeste, heartfelt A Short Hike, noir adventure Backbone, surreal puzzler Baba Is You, couch co-op shooter Towerfall Ascension, and roguelike Gonner.
It also packs many digital tabletop games, including solo journaling RPG The Wretched, queer empowering role-playing game Thirsty Sword Lesbians, and The Estate adventure collection for heroic rodent RPG Mausritter.
That’s only a slim selection of the hundreds of games included, from massive indie darlings to smaller titles from lesser-known developers.
You can grab the games for a minimum donation of $10. According to the bundle’s organizers, that’s a saving of 99% off the $6,544 the games would collectively cost at retail, but they “highly urge you to pay above the minimum if you can afford to do so”.
All money raised will be donated to International Medical Corps, a global non-profit that’s providing emergency medical services to Ukraine, and Voices of Children, a foundation that has been providing psychological support to children affected by Ukraine’s armed conflict since 2015.
As of press time, the Bundle for Ukraine has raised over $437,000 dollars, roughly 44% of its $1,000,000 goal, after being live for less than 24 hours. The average donation is currently $15.00 while the top contribution is a massive $1,536.00. The bundle will be live until March 18.
Analysis: the latest example of collective indie action
This isn’t the first time indie game developers have pulled together on Itch.io to raise money for a great cause. The Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality (opens in new tab) raised a staggering $8,000,000 in 2020 for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Community Bail Fund, supporting anti-racist protests and the Black Lives Matter movement.
That bundle also included an impressive selection of lauded indie games, such as Anodyne, Pikuniku, and Nuclear Throne, and was well received by players who not only wanted to grab a bunch of fantastic video games for cheap but support a social cause while doing so.
The Bundle for Ukraine is just the latest example of indie developers using their collective platforms for effective fundraising. The grassroots organization of the project means any developer who’s released their game on itch.io can take part, handing supporters a bunch of titles they may have never heard of alongside several indie darlings they’re desperate to play.
Given the response to the Bundle for Ukraine so far, and the rate at which donations have been piling in, it looks more than likely it will reach its $1,000,000 goal.
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