The Japanese video game industry have come together to help their country, after a major disaster has left them shaken.
Perhaps you had a happy start to this year. On January 1, 2024, a violent earthquake hit Ishikawa Prefecture in Japan, in the city of Suzu in the Noto peninsula. This earthquake is one of the most fatal in the country’s history, at a staggering 7.6 Richter. Worse, it created a tsunami that reached a height of tsunami of 6.58 m.
We want to take a moment here to express our condolences to the families of those who have lost loved ones. There are many fatalities, injured, and missing as a result of this earthquake, and some of these facts may change as Japan still reckons with its full impact and consequences.
So, even more than generosity, there was a clear moral imperative for those in Japan who can to help the victims of the Noto earthquake. As reported by Video Games Chronicle, Nintendo Co Ltd pledged to donate ¥50 million, or $ 340,000, to Noto’s residents. This follows The Pokemon Company, of which Nintendo is a co-owner, pledging to also donate ¥50 million.
On top of this, The Pokemon Company is offering to help children affected by the disaster through their Pokemon With You Foundation, to help them ‘regain their smiles’. But of course, they are not the only Japanese companies who have offered to help.
Sony Interactive Entertainment’s parent company, Sony group, have pledged donations through their different division. The Japanese Red Cross will receive ¥15 million from Sony Group and ¥10 million from Sony Life Insurance. Sony Group operates an ‘Emergency Disaster and Recovery Fund for Children’ with Save The Children Japan, and the fund will donate ¥15 million to Noto.
Sony Group will also do fundraising among their employees, with the company matching employee donations. They will also provide additional services as requested or as the need arises. Sony, of course, is much more than a game company in Japan. Their financial services division will likely be most involved in helping Noto.
These Japanese game companies have also shared their messages of support and these donation pledges:
Square Enix – ¥50 million
Capcom – ¥120 million
We were not able to verify other companies’ donations, but that does not mean that they did not help. Note that Nintendo previously had a policy not to publicly disclose their donations to humanitarian causes, and that may partly still be in effect.
It’s important to understand that these donations are not even close to matching what is necessary to rehabilitiate Noto. Of course, that’s really the responsibility of the current Japanese government, the Kishida administration. They have pledged to use ¥100 billion from the country’s emergency fund for quake relief. The US embassy has also committed to sharing two helicopters for rescue and relief efforts.
GameRanx wishes the best of the people of Noto, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. We hope to share more positive news of the region in the future.