Alina | Saturday, January 25, 2020
Australia is an amazingly beautiful land, with a vibrant culture and a history that stretches back nearly 60,000 years. A few years ago, one of our contest winners requested that the team create an Australia Day shop that everyone could enjoy. We thought her request was so generous, we had to make it happen. So this weekend, log in to find non-member, spiffy prezzies for gold in your Featured Gear Shop!
Today: the AUS-some Cape and Barry the Platypus pet (update: Barry has lost his formal top hat. This will be added tomorrow).
And now, to get serious for just a minute. Earlier this week, the Dove and Verylrus (the heads of the DragonFable dev team) messaged with a dilemma. Their release for this weekend included a forest fire. Given that Australia is dealing with a very real emergency, they didn't want to appear insensitive. After brainstorming, we crafted the following post for the DF Design Notes:
The story for this weekend's update -- which includes a forest fire as part of the plot -- was written well in advance. With the severe wildfires raging throughout Australia, the team debated changing our plans for tonight's release. We wouldn't want to come across as insensitive, or for you all to think we were capitalizing on the very real emergencies faced by the people and wildlife there.
We had three real options:
The choice was clear. Our game stories don't always reflect the real world, but this time, it has, and we want to use that opportunity to educate players about what's happening in the real world and environment.
How the fires have impacted Australia
If you'd like to help, we've checked out the following charities, and they are legit.
This is a global emergency, and it will impact more than Australia. We don't usually get quite so serious in our game design notes posts, but this is one of those times where you can be a hero in our videogames AND in the real world.
We've received many messages asking how to help those affected by Australia's wildfires. We're making a a $500 donation on your behalf to to the RSPCA New South Wales, a charity helping rescue animals endangered by the wildfires. Thank you for enabling us to make this donation.