In the press

Forbes: How British Developers Are Sending The ‘Stay At Home’ Coronavirus Message To Gamers

April 6, 2020

Codemasters worked with their partners, Bidstack to deliver ‘Stay Home, Save Lives’ message in DiRT Rally 2.0 title.

A trio of U.K. developers has committed to combating COVID-19 by adding in-game adverts that provide coronavirus safety advice, in line with wider government messaging.

The move is being made by Rebellion, Codemasters and Activision-Blizzard’s freemium mobile game specialist King, and will see games such as Sniper Elite 4DiRT Rally 2.0Candy Crush Saga and Farm Heroes Saga kicking off the campaign by promoting the “Stay home. Save lives.” slogan that has come to dominate TV, radio, news and even billboards across Britain in recent weeks.

Despite the fact that Dirt Rally 2.0 is over one year old, Codemasters’ decision to add the adverts to its fantastic rally sim will coincide with the game’s inclusion on Sony’s PlayStation Plus from tomorrow (April 7). The game has been an established part of Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass since last September, and with more people exploring their gaming options than usual, it’s likely to make an impact there, too.

Explaining the decision, vice president of business development at Codemasters Toby Evan-Jones said: “[W]e came to realize that technology within our games, which enables the remote updating of banners within the virtual environment, could be repurposed to assist with the coronavirus communication effort.” The company collaborated with in-game advertising platform Bidstack, which Codemasters will partner with in an upcoming game in 2020.