As the coronavirus pandemic continues, it’s become a centerpiece for online content. It’s the subject of Tik Tok videos, viral (oof) tweets, and has even added new connotations to seemingly unrelated things, like wearing face masks in Animal Crossing: New Horizons. That also means that brands are coming for that online engagement with relatable content about being quarantined or scared for your life or the lives of your friends and family.
In general, I have rolled my eyes at a fair bit of these, but today, Rare, the Xbox Game Studios currently supporting Sea of Thieves, posted something that actually made me giggle. It elicited a slight chuckle, if you will.
For those that might not have played the Nintendo 64 platformer Banjo-Kazooie, the game features a room with letters on the floor. Here, Banjo slams down onto letters to enter cheat codes. So when Rare oddly posted a video from this game that is both over 20 years old, and isn’t exactly on the company’s radar at the moment, I was confused and had to see what was up. The post itself had no caption, so the whole thing just seemed a little strange to me. This was until I saw what Banjo’s body slams were actually spelling.
— Rare Ltd. (@RareLtd) March 26, 2020
Two simple words that carry so much weight in these trying times. You heard it here first, gamers. If all the doctors and professionals telling you to stay home and practice self-quarantine practices weren’t enough, perhaps a bear and his bird from the game you liked as a kid can help you understand the gravity of the situation. You love to see celebrities using their status and reach to spread messages that are productive to the prolonged existence of the human race, and Banjo and Kazooie are doing some real good looking out here.
In other news:
- Nintendo Beyoncé’d a Nintendo Direct Into the World Today
- Epic Games Enters Partnership with Three Pretty Major Developers
- After Rumors Spread, Konami Confirms Silent Hills is Still Dead, Actually
Jokes aside, the spread of COVID-19 has already had some pretty damaging effects on the games industry at large. From events like E3 being cancelled for the year, GameStop stores closing their doors to the public, and even PlayStation Network slowing download speeds in Europe due to the increase in home internet usage, the pandemic is affecting games in ways a lot of people probably hadn’t considered until they were happening.
So maybe I am cynical about companies using the state of things to create online content that conveniently still promotes their brands and products, but then maybe I should also remember that people who run these social channels are people, and are probably coping with this all in their own way.
Just stay home and play Animal Crossing: New Horizons or Doom Eternal, y’all. Heck, Persona 5 Royal and Final Fantasy VII Remake are nearly here, too. You have plenty of things to keep you entertained inside for long stretches of time. I’m 80 hours in to Royal now and still haven’t even touched most of the game’s new content, and am going to try out the new Ring Fit Adventure rhythm game tonight. All of this I’ll be doing from the comfort and safety of my home.