PlayStation have announced their “Play At Home Initiative”, which includes two free games, and financial support to their indie developer partners.
The news comes via the PlayStation Blog for North America, and Europe. Firstly, Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection and Journey will be free from April 15th to May 5th in North America, and April 16th to May 6th in Europe.
However, for users in Germany and China, they will have access to Knack 2 instead of Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection. The North American and Europan blog list their own dates for the offer in Germany and China however.
Second, PlayStation state that Sony Interactive Entertainment have set aside $10 million USD to help support independent development partners.
“Independent developers are vital to the heart and soul of the gaming community and we understand the hardships and financial struggles that many smaller gaming studios are facing. With that, SIE has developed a fund to support them during this time. We have earmarked $10 million to support our independent development partners. More information about the fund, including participation criteria, will be made available soon.”
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic (also known as COVID-19 officially, or Chinese Flu to others) has affected many worldwide, from businesses to public gatherings and events. [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. This includes the postponement of GDC, and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, along with the cancellation of E3 2020 (including digital events), and Comiket 98.
We also recently reported on both a Sony Interactive Entertainment employee, and an employee at Capcom’s Tokyo HQ contracted the virus. SiliconEra also reports a member of Capcom in Osaka also contracted the virus.
In addition, voice actor Rick May (Soldier in Team Fortress 2, Peppy Hare and Andross in Star Fox 64) passing away due to the virus.
The Johns Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering are mapping the virus’ spread [1, 2]. As of this time of writing, there have been over 1.934 million total confirmed cases worldwide, and over 1.352 million active cases. There have been over 120,000 deaths, however over 462,000 people have made a “total recovery.”