ArenaNet, they of Guild Wars 2, will be partnering with the Ad Council’s national Seize the Awkward suicide prevention program.
In a press release, this partnership marks the Ad Council’s first collaboration with video games. During the entirety of February, Guild Wars 2’s 11 million players will receive a free Seize the Awkward t-shirt for their in-game character via the game’s gem store to raise awareness about how friends can help and support one another through hard times. The month-long effort is part of the Ad Council’s ongoing Game for Good initiative, which harnesses the power of leading gaming companies and top gaming influencers to drive awareness and impact on critical social issues.
Additionally, the video below was created showcasing real Guild Wars 2 players supporting their friends with regards to mental health.
“We couldn’t be more excited to introduce a new audience to Seize the Awkward through a captivating, in-game feature where we believe users will be receptive to our message,” said Heidi Arthur, Chief Campaign Development Officer at the Ad Council. “Whether online or face-to-face, the important thing is to trust your gut and reach out to a friend who might be struggling. This effort will continue to encourage young adults to start these critical and potentially life-saving conversations.”
Dr. Songyee Yoon, CEO of NCSOFT West, expressed support as well,
“Guild Wars 2’s players are renowned for their welcoming and supportive attitude and embracing the message of Seize the Awkward is a great opportunity to emphasize how necessary that type of support can be during hard times. Creating a strong community and an inviting place to play is a core pillar to all our games, and we’re very honored to partner with the Ad Council to highlight the way meaningful connections can be made through video games.”