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Jack Gardner

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    Every hospital is different. Each of the wonderful places that is supported by Extra Lifers across the US and Canada has its own set of holiday traditions and happenings. Those events reflect the deeply personal stories that play out in the halls and rooms of those Children's Miracle Network Hospitals every day. In the spirit of the season, we wanted to share a handful of our favorite stories from hospitals located all over North America!


    SickKids’ Milk & Cookies



    Everyone loves to kick back during the holidays with some cookies and milk to wash them down! In recognition of this, SickKids launched a fundraising initiative to partner with bakers and cookie manufacturers to do some good with all of the sweet things being sold. Their partners include the likes of Walmart, Toppers, Girl Gang Goodies, General Mills, and more! One of their biggest sponsors is Oreo. The company pledged to donate at least $500,000 CAD to SickKids - all fueled by the sales of cookies sold during the holiday season. Check out their full list of sponsors to find some goodies that might also spread a little bit of cheer at SickKids! 


    Ignite Hope at Phoenix Children’s Hospital


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    In 2011, a young girl named Katie found herself diagnosed with an aggressive and rare form of cancer. The 15-year-old's illness was so rare that it only affects five in one million kids. During her fight at Phoenix Children's Hospital, Katie's friends and church group gathered at the hospital to hold a vigil by candlelight. The gathering and its shining lights burned in the darkness and giving all of the kids at Phoenix Children's along with Katie the gift of hope during the holidays. This has now become a growing and yearly tradition, called Ignite Hope, carrying on the legacy of hope that Katie left for those she loved after she passed away in 2013. 


    The event has also taken on a fundraising aspect with the Hope Fund, which raises money to help fund over 60 programs at Phoenix Children's Hospital. This helps kids to feel more at home while at the hospital via animal-assisted therapy, pastoral care, music therapy, and child life programs. This year, over 3,000 people came together across two different events on December 14th and managed to raise $453,000 USD, a new record for Ignite Hope! This was helped by sponsors like Pizza Hut, 1Wish, 12 News, iHeart Media, and more.



    Christmas Tree Farm at Children’s of Alabama




    Mark Miller has been bringing Christmas to Children's of Alabama in Birmingham. This year, he brought over 340 trees donated by his colleagues across 30 different stores to the hospital, allowing kids to pick out their own trees to decorate and feel a bit of the holiday spirit while they are away from their homes and families during this difficult time of the year. The event came completely magical with fake snow and an appearance by Santa Claus himself! 


    Miller was inspired to lead this Christmas tree farm to honor the memory of his daughter, Mary Beth, who passed away in 2013 due to complications with her heart. It hurt him to think of kids who might be alone in the hospital, away from their family's holiday traditions, so he started the Christmas tree farm. Kids who weren't well enough to make it down to the event had trees brought to them. It's a stellar tradition that helps kids feel a little bit less alone and isolated in the hospital during the holidays. 


    The World's Largest Lego Menorah for El Paso Children’s Hospital



    There's something big happening in El Paso, Texas. Earlier this month, the Jewish Federation of Greater El Paso gathered to celebrate Hanukkah a bit early by bringing numerous families in the community together for an impressive project. Together, the community constructed a 10ft tall menorah out of 70,000 Lego pieces. The size of the menorah makes it unique as the world's largest menorah constructed out of Lego pieces.


    The menorah project was more than just for fun, however. The project is one of a number of interfaith Lego building projects that will be happening during the holidays. The event organizers used a building project to teach middle schoolers about wind power with windmill construction sessions. On top of that, the Jewish Federation went to Vino Nuevo Church where they worked with members of other faiths to build the old city of Jerusalem, including the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Wailing Wall, as well as many other historical landmarks.


    These events regularly draw hundreds of participants and viewers. The draw opens them up to some wonderful opportunities to do good in the El Paso community. For example, the proceeds raised from the construction of the menorah went toward supporting the El Paso Children's Hospital.


    We wish you all a merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, a stellar Solstice, and a bright Kwanzaa. In short, may you all have a festive holiday season!


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    Nerd Stash came into the Extra Life fold beginning in 2018. The gaming website formed Team Nerd Stash, a community of 12 amazing streamers who work together to stream every day of the year. The strategy that they have adopted turns that dedication into a constant call to action from their community to participate in and donate to Extra Life.


    In total, the team has managed to raise almost $50,000 USD for Kentucky Children’s Hospital since 2018. they accomplished this by mobilizing their community with year-round support streams and events. Not all of these were explicitly big events for Extra Life, but they also held hyped super streams to rally interest and coordinate strategic giveaways that included games, physical swag, and more to create donation incentives.

    This kind of dedication to charitable giving, specifically to benefit Extra Life, has been baked into Nerd Stash from the beginning. Their About Us page reads:

    Our company is unique as we take the extra steps to connect with our local communities and give back to charity on a yearly basis with an organization called Extra Life. All money goes to charity for children who are fighting very serious diseases and we are on board to help support this cause.

    They describe their Twitch channel as being completely all-in on fundraising for Extra Life. Everything they are able to bring in financially through their streaming goes directly toward their Extra Life total. Team Nerd Stash relates their efforts in the following words:

    Our channel on Twitch is dedicated to doing all we can to give back to Extra Life and the Kentucky Children's Hospital, the sole purpose of why we do what we do on Twitch each day. We take it to the next level and our team has BIG hearts for the kids! We take all donations, tips, subscriptions, bits, all monetary support, and give it all back to the hospital because we believe in doing something bigger than ourselves by giving back and being united for the cause.

    This year, Team Nerd Stash decided that not only would all of their streaming activity benefit Extra Life, but they would host not one, not two, but four epic marathons to raise money for the kids. The marathons coordinated with each season, spring, summer, fall, and winter, with the most recent kicking off on December 13th. Each of these super streams went 60 hours straight, making their total marathon time 10 times more than the traditional 24 hour marathon the majority of Extra Lifers experience on Game Day. With prizes donated or procured from Bungie, Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, Xbox, and more, the team pushed hard throughout their streams to raise money, spread cheer, and hand out their prizes.


    We want to thank the Nerd Stash team for going above and beyond with their dedication. They demonstrated the energy that helps to mobilize the people who make Extra Life possible in the first place. This is the kind of effort that drives Extra Life and pushes everyone in the community to do as much as they can every year for the kids. Thank you, Team Nerd Stash and everyone who contributed to their success by donating, sharing on social media, or going the distance and joining the team in fundraising. You are all absolutely incredible for what you do for the children who need help in your communities.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    2019 marks the fifth year Kinda Funny has participated in Extra Life and the first year the organization has broken the elusive $100,000 USD barrier! The fan-centered company began in 2015 after its four founders left IGN and began an incredibly popular podcasting and gaming network. Members of their community became known as "best friends," a collection of people who fostered their fandom and connected respectfully with one another. One of the best friends, Eric Thompson, created Team Kinda Funny to bring the community, and eventually the full organization, into the effort to help kids across the US and Canada. 


    That first year, Team Kinda Funny was able to more than double their initial goal of $25,000 USD to raise over $50,000 USD for the kids! Since then, Team Kinda Funny has made a habit of breaking through expectations. The team has now raised well over $400,000 USD for kids across North America since they got their start! That's the kind of achievement that truly touches countless lives and helps more children than we can wrap our heads around. The way the team has come together over the years was compiled into an almost hour-long documentary about Kinda Funny and its wonderful community of best friends. 



    Donations were raised via streaming on Game Day and extra efforts like holding shirt design contests and putting those designs up for sale. This year's design was created by Cameron Kennedy, host of Important Business. You can grab the shirt for a limited time, with all profits from the shirt going to Extra Life and helping Kinda Funny set their fundraising bar even higher for next year! 


    Team Kinda Funny's fundraising page really says it all:


    Everyday, we hear your stories about how video games better your life; how they help you cope with stress and give you a place to escape the world around you. Some of you have shared how video games have helped you through tough times, including times of serious illness. We know how important gaming is to you, and we’re a part of Extra Life because it’s an opportunity for us, as a gaming community, and as a community of best friends, to make a real change in the lives of sick children.


    The bulk of 2019's donations that contributed toward Team Kinda Funny's smashing success went to three hospitals: UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals in Oakland, California, Sanford Children's in Fargo, North Dakota, and Maria Fareri Children's Hospital in Valhalla, New York. The opportunities Team Kinda Funny has made possible in those locations and numerous other places across the continent can't be overstated.




    We want to say thank you to the wonderful people who have come together over the past five years to make some good in the world, both the best friends in Kinda Funny's community, the personalities on screen or on mic during streams, and the people working hard behind the scenes to make it all happen. You're incredible and we can't wait to see all of the amazing things you're going to do for the community and the world. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    Studio Wildcard made a name for themselves by creating the popular survival game called ARK: Survival Evolved and the still-under-construction pirate MMO ATLAS. Since 2015, Studio Wildcard has been one of Extra Life's fastest growing supporters. Their first year fundraising, they brought in over $20,000 USD. The team managed to pull in over $110,000 USD this year. In total, the folks at the studio and their fans have managed to raise over $300,000 USD. That's freaking incredible and we are absolutely blown away by what they are doing for the kids across the country and especially at UF Health Shands Children's Hospital in Gainesville, Florida. 


    Over the past three years, Extra Life's head Mike Kinney has hopped onto Studio Wildcard's stream to do a Game Day interview. As a guest, Mike has been able to spread the message of Extra Life and explain what it is and the good the organization does for kids across the US and Canada. This year, Studio Wildcard's stream kicked off with Mike's now traditional appearance. We were honored to be able to participate and contribute in a small way to the team's Game Day activities!


    Studio Wildcard's Game Day plans were extravagant. The team streamed on their Twitch channel for 24 hours beginning at 9am PST on November 2nd. The stream featured a series of interviews starting with the aforementioned Mike Kinney interview. Later on in their schedule, the team interviewed sponsors like Alienware, Discord, and also brought on developers working on ARK and ATLAS. Between those high-profile chats, Studio Wildcard played games in real life on-stream. 


    One of the biggest draws of the stream, however, was Studio Wildcard's reveal of the upcoming Genesis DLC for ARK. These information drops occurred every two hours, providing fans of the game ample incentive to stay tuned and donate. Exciting new items, locations, creatures, and features took center stage during those reveals, like the introduction of the Lunar Biome Environment which brings the survival game to the surface of the moon. 




    On top of all of that, Studio Wildcard managed to attract several partners for the stream including AMD, Alienware, MSI, Elgato, Discord, Nitrado, and more. In total, these partners and the studio itself accrued over $10,000 USD in prizes to use as giveaways. These included shirts, plushies, goodie bags filled with cool stuff, collector's editions of amazing games, season passes for their Genesis DLC, and more!


    Additionally, during the stream, the team boosted the rates for how fast players could progress through the skills and levels of both ARK and ATLAS. Every $5,000 USD donated to their team gave all players a 0.5x multiplier for the experience they earned, stacking up to 8x. Each donor to the stream received a forum badge for ARK or ATLAS and those who donated over $500 USD would receive a golden badge. As a super special perk, those who donated over $2,500 USD got added to the credits of both ARK and ATLAS as an Extra Life Superfan.


    This all goes so far above and beyond what we ever could have expected. The amount of good this does for hospitals across North America can't be overstated. The work Studio Wildcard has done over the years has helped kids get treatment, either by providing them the facilities they need or paying for their care. We are blown away. Thank you so much to each and every person who helped pull together these events every year since 2015 and the community for turning out to support Studio Wildcard's efforts with each new year. Your efforts matter. Thank you. 




    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    Game gear company KontrolFreek has been supporting Extra Life for years, bringing incredible passion to their fundraising efforts, and this year is no exception. Tomorrow, the wonderful folks at KontrolFreek will begin streaming for a full day of weird and wild gaming hijinks. Since the stream is taking place during the holiday season, KontrolFreek has also organized a series of giveaways as donation incentives! 


    The stream will begin tomorrow, December 14th, at 11am EST and continue until 9pm EST. The KontrolFreek team plans on livestreaming non-stop from their Atlanta headquarters. The KontrolFreek Day of Giving Charity Stream will be benefiting Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, a facility that supports over 60 specialties and programs for children across the state of Georgia. Be sure to tune into the stream, which you can find over on KontrolFreek's Twitch channel, throughout the day for a chance to win cool donation prizes from their corporate sponsors.



    Everyone who donates $5 USD or more to KontrolFreek's Extra Life page during their official stream will be entered into a giveaway contest for a slew of incredible items donated for them to use for their fundraising efforts. Prizes have been donated by some of the leading brands in gaming. For a $5 USD donation, you could win products from Gunnar, Legion, Meta, DXRacer, Kill Cliff, Lenovo, and Turtle Beach! You can also gun for the coveted spot of top donor during the stream, which will guarantee the person behind the donation a win in the contest. 


    Furthermore, at various points throughout the stream, KontrolFreek's dedicated streamers will be opening "mystery boxes." These boxes contain three escalating levels of disgusting and embarrassing challenges for those who open them, all for the entertainment of the audience. The more that people donate, the worse things will get for the streamers, and they are only too happy to oblige when its all going toward helping the kids of Georgia. We applaud KontrolFreek's dedication to the kids, thank you so much to the brave streamers putting themselves on the line. 




    Tomorrow will be an exciting time over on KontrolFreek's Twitch channel, so be sure to follow along with the shenanigans. If you want to support, you can donate to KontrolFreek's Extra Life page or even join their team and host your own stream inspired by the efforts of the KontrolFreek team! All donations count toward 2019's Extra Life fundraising total until the end of December. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Having trouble coming up with ideas for what gifts to pick up for the holidays? Sometimes buying gifts for the gamer in your life can be difficult when venturing beyond the actual games themselves. We dug through the internet to find four gift ideas outside of the norm to put on your list or pick up for your loved ones.


    Fortnite Yoga Pants




    Sometimes you want to rock an eye-catching look to yoga while also subtly signaling your nerdiness to the world. These Loot Llama leggings will accomplish both goals flawlessly. Inspired by the infamous Loot Llama of Fortnite fame, these will certainly add color to any yoga-goer’s ensemble.


    Gaming Pet Collars




    If you haven’t ever looked into the world of handmade video crafts on Etsy, there’s more to discover than you can imagine. One of the most unique and practical items you can purchase on the site are collars for your dog or any other kind of pet. There are fantastic ones inspired by gaming controllers, Space Invaders, and The Legend of Zelda series. One of our favorites is a collar that uses the opening legend scroll from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker in its design.  


    Pac-Man Makeup Line  




    If you are looking for a way to represent your love of old-school gaming or for the perfect finishing touch on your look for that hip neighborhood arcade outing, cosmetics company Wet n’ Wild has an official partnership with the Pac-Man brand to sell makeup based on the iconic gaming franchise. Each item has been designed both in color scheme and packaging to be reminiscent of the series, making it a fun gift for any fan of gaming.


    Nerdy/Cool Keyboard Customization


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    Keyboard customization has become a rapidly expanding hobby industry. You can find artisans to create key caps for mechanical keyboards that incorporate cute or cool designs inspired by video games or characters from pop culture. For laptops or keyboards that don’t have easily removed caps, you can find handmade decals to make your functional keyboard into a piece of art that can serve as an outlet for self-expression. You can find all kinds of people who make these things across the internet, like TinyMakesThings (who is also an Extra Lifer!) or various artists who offer decal or key cap services, like TooMcCoolForYou and their sweet Pokémon keyboard decal set.


    If none of these are terribly interesting, you could always make sure that loved one has a Platinum Extra Life profile for 2019 and help them hit the $200 goal to get them the sweet and exclusive t-shirt design for the year. That way, you know your money is going to a good cause and letting your gamer flag fly by rocking one of our super cool gaming t-shirts. You can do this anytime from now until the end of December.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    For the third year in a row, ArenaNet, the developer behind the popular Guild Wars 2 MMO, participated in Extra Life. Over the past two years, Team ArenaNet managed to raise over $80,000 USD for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. This past year, ArenaNet set up a Super Team that includes 9 sub-teams and nearly 500 team members that includes staff, community members, and fans. Through their combined efforts, ArenaNet and its community have raised over $145,000 this year alone, bringing their lifetime fundraising total to well over $225,000 USD for kids all across the US and Canada.  


    "We're on a mission to show the world that gaming is the best form of entertainment, the best way to make new friends, and most importantly, the best way to raise money for children's hospitals!" - Official ArenaNet statement


    ArenaNet provided support beyond encouraging employees to participate in Game Day fundraising. In the lead up to the big day, they put out a blog post letting everyone in the Guild Wars 2 community know that all donations up to $25,000 USD would be matched by ArenaNet. That means that when their fundraising hit $25,000 USD total, ArenaNet also donated $25,000, doubling the funds raised up until that point. 


    Of course, the Guild Wars 2 community didn't just let things end there. Streamers and staff members were able to work together to bring in almost three times that $50,000 USD during their Game Day efforts. That's an incredible achievement for a developer and its community to reach by cooperating and coordinating together and we want to thank everyone; the ArenaNet employees who went out of their way to help arrange the fundraiser, corporate for providing matching funds, and the fans who played and spread the word to bring in an astonishing amount of donations. You all did an incredible job and a huge number of kids are going to be able to get the treatment they need thanks to your efforts. Thank you so much!  




    If you want to continue showing that support until the end of the year, you can! Team registration is open throughout the year, so you can head over to the Team ArenaNet Extra Life page to create a sub-team or join the larger Super Team and hold your own personal Game Day to raise money for sick and injured kids in the Children's Miracle Network Hospital of your choice, or donate to the overall team's total to help them set a new fundraising record for 2019. Every donation from now until the end of December sets the bar for next year even higher!


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Salesforce has been a long-time supporter of Extra Life through its Fragforce Extra Life team. These intrepid members of the Salesforce company go out of their way every year to raise money for Extra Life as well as several other excellent charity organizations. The Fragforce team has been able to raise over $350,000 USD for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals across the United States and Canada.


    From the beginning, Salesforce has been one of the most charitable companies out there. The company's CEO, Mark Benioff, is the namesake of UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in San Francisco, an achievement that speaks to the underlying ethos of Salesforce. On top of that, the company's support of the Fragforce Extra Life team through employee matching has been a massive factor in the success of their fundraising efforts. Salesforce Employees have taken advantage of the company's matching donations to supercharge the money that goes to supporting kids who need help the most. 


    Fragforce has had a significant Extra Life United presence over the past few years. This past year, Dave Denison, a member of Fragforce, came up with a brilliant idea. He bought a version of Munchkin that allows players to draw their own cards. He was able to have Champion Kids from across the US and Canada draw their own cards for the popular tabletop game. After that, an impromptu tournament was put together with the winner taking home a $500 USD grant from Salesforce to support the hospital of their choice. Not only that, the one-of-a-kind game made with the passion of those kids was put up for auction, eventually being bought for $550 USD. 




    “The idea of being able to gain a few extra volunteer hours (while doing something I spent far too much time doing anyway), was what initially intrigued me. However, after joining Fragforce and touring UCSF Benioff Hospital, I was awestruck at seeing firsthand how much Children’s Miracle Network and Extra Life do to help these kids, and how our fundraising directly empowers them.”


    Ben Gray, Salesforce.com, Software Engineering


    For what the awesome members of Fragforce are able to do with the support of Salesforce, we cannot thank them enough. It's inspiring to see a company and its workers coming together to help the kids in their communities while having fun and forming genuine, lasting connections. The creativity Fragforce shows the world every year is astounding and we are honored that they choose to spend their time helping kids through Extra Life. 


    One thing that can really bring fundraising efforts to the next level is a matching donation from a company. Many actually have these programs, though they can be a bit hard to find. If you are looking to increase your fundraising to hit your goal or just to do as much good in the world as possible, consider asking your manager or browsing your company's corporate site to see if they will match the donations you receive for Extra Life. It's a simple step that can do a lot for the kids in your local Children's Miracle Network Hospital. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Extra Life Nerds, formerly known as Team Nerdery, has been going strong for several years, fundraising for kids in Minnesota, Illinois, Kansas, and Arizona. The group grew out of employees at the various Nerdery offices discovering Extra Life and wanting to leverage their nerdy interests in a way that could give back to their various communities and the hospitals that had helped them and their children. Finding that the group had grown larger than just those within the company, they changed their name to Extra Lifer Nerds as both a nod to their roots and a more welcoming name for newcomers. 


    Troy Cleland took leadership of the team from the very beginning. Playing for Extra Life for the past 9 years, Troy was given the Angels in Action Award last year for everything he has done to contribute to Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul, Minnesota through his work with Extra Life Nerds and as president of the Twin Cities Extra Life Guild. Under his leadership, fundraising events around the state have been empowered to find success and support their local Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. With Extra Life Nerds specifically, Troy has captained the team to raise nearly $200,000 USD since the team began its fundraising efforts, consistently putting Extra Life Nerds in the top 20 teams raising money #ForTheKids. 


    The Extra Life Nerds team incorporates over 130 gamers across their four central locations. Part of the success that the group has found is in turning parts of the office spaces within the Nerdery into community gaming spaces for Game Day. The company donates the space which those running the events can then use for Rock Band/Karaoke venues, VR stations, auction space, rooms for tabletop roleplaying games like D&D, space for people to bring in consoles or PCs of their own, and more. The Minnesota location, for example, even has an annual midnight dodge ball game! 



    Giving local gamers a place to go if they want to participate in a big group event for Extra Life has helped Extra Life Nerds grow every year and make their Game Days a draw for the entire community. The  employees at the Nerdery are able to leverage their connections with the tech industry to snag cool incentives for giveaways and auctions, giving everyone a chance to pick up something cool during their time marathoning for the kids, confident that the money they bid is going to a great cause.


    A huge thank you to Extra Life Nerds for everything they have done for the kids of Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Phoenix Children's Hospital, KU Medical Center, and more. If you're interested in joining or donating to the Extra Life Nerds team, you can head over to their Extra Life team page. You can also sign up for updates on the team's activities on the website the team built to help organize itself.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Game Informer has been turning out to support Extra Life since 2011. Their efforts began as a community effort for that first year before snowballing, drawing in the editors and artists that work on the magazine and website. Since then, the team's Game Day stream has grown larger and larger with each passing year. This year, Game Informer's streaming efforts and their wonderful community managed to raise almost $80,000. In total, the Game Informer team has managed to raise almost $350,000 for Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul, Minnesota.


    To achieve their stellar results year after year, Game Informer has been able to come up with a great Game Day program. The editors on working the live stream focused on group games to foster a competitive spirit along with a couple strategically picked solo titles to bring in additional viewers. Divided into 1-2 hour blocks of time, Game Informer's staff played party games like Pictionary and Jackbox Party Pack 6 with the audience while challenging one another in matches of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Goldeneye, and Heave Ho. Other segments had editors providing commentary while playing through The Last of Us: Left Behind, Final Fantasy VII, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Hard Mode. Throughout all of this, viewers were able to donate to force editors into a wide variety of masks and suits, pie one another in the face, or even eat bugs or the notorious clam-dy canes.



    However, one of the biggest draws to the Extra Life stream every year are the auctions. During various chunks of time throughout the 25-hour Game Day stream, the livestream would switch over to the auction desk, where unique, one-of-a-kind items were put up for viewers to bid on in the Twitch and YouTube chats. These auctions included unobtainable shirts that had been used as promotional items for games going all the way back to the 90s, gaming themed bundles, consoles, rare collector's editions, signed magazines by the staff, signed posters from development teams, action figures, and so much more. These are things that usually can no longer be bought anywhere else, so the auctions draw a lot of attention from hardcore gaming fans. 


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    While those auctions and opportunities have come and gone for 2019, those who want to continue to support Game Informer still can! If you are interested in joining their team to do an end of the year fundraising stream or donating to their overall total, you can do so on Game Informer's Extra Life team page.  


    Finally, we just want to say thank you to everyone in the Game Informer community and everyone who worked so hard on the Game Informer staff who gave their time and energy to helping kids. It's so inspiring to see you all come together, whether that's over the Game Day stream or an obscure game like OverBlood, to do something incredible to support the most vulnerable among us in getting the care they need to live happy and healthy lives. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    The Giant Bomb Extra Life team has been going strong for over nine years now, next year will mark a decade of the media outlet's participation in Extra Life. In that time, the staff and community of Giant Bomb have raised over $1.6 million USD for the kids. Over 200 members joined their team this year, and together they were able to raise over $230,000 USD, with a significant amount of that going to support UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals, a network of medical facilities that helps kids across Northern California.


    Giant Bomb's staff hosted not one, not two, but seven streams for a total of length of 139 hours of streamed content, which translates to nearly six days of near constant streaming between the various members of the Giant Bomb staff. That's not counting the hard work of the Giant Bomb community that outdid themselves. Not only did members raise an incredible amount of the Giant Bomb team's total, they also put together a lot of fun resources for others in the community to use, like nearly an hour of free to use music tracks and even a slick promo video to advertise their team's fundraising efforts. 



    One of the fundamental aspects of the fundraising Giant Bomb's community has built over the years is livestreaming on or around Game Day. They recommend selecting a theme for your stream to attract other die hard fans and help you stand out from the crowd. Becoming familiar with streaming allows some to up the production quality of their streams with graphics, layouts, donation alerts, and more.


    By focusing their energy around Game Day, they have found it easier to build hype around their streams and that hype makes it easier for them to find donations. In fact, community members encourage one another to put the time in to promote their streams before Game Day as much as possible in order to bring in the most donations. After all, it's hard to get donations after a streamer's marathon has come and gone.   




    If you want to help Giant Bomb's Extra Life team reach their full goal of $250,000 USD for 2019, there's still time! Extra Life takes donations at any time throughout the year. Just head over to the Giant Bomb team page to donate or sign up to participate in a year-end fundraising stream either solo or with your friends. 


    We want to thank everyone who has helped Giant Bomb and its community to become one of Extra Life's most dedicated and successful pillars. You are all incredible and never stop amazing us. Shine on, you crazy diamonds! 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    Over the past three years, it has been incredible seeing Funko Games come out to support kids across the United States and Canada. This year, they've outdone themselves. The DDoS attack on Game Day was a major setback for many, but Funko Games' Stephanie Straw has decided to lead the charge in planning and hosting a make-up game night to raise money for Seattle Children's Hospital on Giving Tuesday, December 3rd. With limited space and killer prizes, the event at Funko HQ has already sold out, with all ticket proceeds going to local kids through Extra Life. 


    However, the willingness to do not one, but TWO Game Day events isn't the only thing that sets Funko Games apart. The previous two years in which Funko Games participated saw their team raising over $35,000 USD. This year not only have they done a significant amount of fundraising, but they have incorporated Extra Life into their year-round plans and helped get the word out about Extra Life in a number of fun and unique ways. 




    Back in June, Funko Games helped Extra Life out by helping to stock the incredibly popular Human Claw Machine with a wide array of their incredible Funko Pop! figures. In order to make the Human Claw Machine initiative work, we needed to have those prizes to create a draw. Funko Games really came through for us in that regard.


    Funko Games has their own podcast that talks about the biggest things the company is involved with, highlights important members of its community, and teases fun things coming in the future. Extra Life's own Brandon Llinas was invited onto the program for Episode 125 to talk about all things Extra Life. You can listen to Brandon expertly informing the Funko community about Extra Life over on Soundcloud or find the Funko Funkast on most major podcasting apps. 


    Finally, Stephanie Straw was on the official Gen Con stream with Extra Life's own Lou Adducci. The duo, accompanied by Miracle Kid Ethan McKinney and host Maya Coleman, were able to introduce the world to Funko Games latest tabletop game, Funkoverse Strategy Game. Featuring tiny Pop! figurine representations of characters from all corners of pop culture, Funkoverse throws them all together into a fun battle of wits for all ages. It was amazing to be included in such a high-profile reveal. We were, and still are, thankful for the opportunity. 



    Funko Games' last major Extra Life push will be their sold out Giving Tuesday Game Night event. However, if you want to support their fundraising efforts, you can always join or donate to their Extra Life team, Funko Games & Friends. Donations are accepted at anytime and count toward the year's fundraising total right up until the end of the year.  


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    2019 is the 8th year Reddit has partnered with Extra Life to raise money and heal kids. This year marked the first time the company has been able to form a Super Team, an umbrella team that allows large organizations to bring their many communities into the fold. Together with some of the biggest internet communities around, Team Reddit was able to raise almost $150,000 USD for kids in Children's Miracle Network Hospitals across the United States and Canada! 


    One of the special drives Reddit pushed in the lead up to Game Day was a special Extra Life trophy and award. The award, purchased with 500 Reddit Coins, cost the same as giving Reddit Gold and conferred the same benefits upon the recipient. Those who donated the Extra Life Charity Award were given a special Extra Life themed trophy to display on their Reddit profiles. As part of this initiative, Reddit matched the first $15,000 USD of Reddit Coins purchased during that time.  


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    In total, Reddit was able to bring over 400 people together across 38 teams to almost reach their goal of $150,000 USD. The top three teams among those 38, excluding Reddit itself, were Reddit Remotes!, Fortnite, and Team Soraka (the r/leagueoflegends community). Thank you so much to Reddit for organizing their Super Team this year and thank you to all of the Redditors who supported Extra Life this year to help sick and injured kids at their local hospitals. You're really making a differences in the world. 


    Extra Life might have one main Game Day per year, but we accept donations and support at all times! If you would like to sign up and fundraise under the Team Reddit umbrella or donate to help them reach their goal, you can do so before the end of 2019. Just head to the Team Reddit Extra Life page and go from there.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    On November 2nd, 250 gamers arrived at the West Edmonton Mall, their new home for the next 25-hours. The Game Day event, organized by the Edmonton Extra Life guild, had hundreds of people take to the ice rink at the mall to play games and raise money for sick and injured kids at Stollery Children's Hospital.  


    The event opened with a now traditional opening ceremony that featured kids from Stollery Children's Hospital playing an exhibition game of Mario Kart against a team of local Edmonton politicians. For the record, the kids have beaten the politicians at every previous opening ceremony competition and continued their streak of victory this year. 




    The Edmonton Extra Life guild's president, Lisa Hawthorne, made sure that the event was stuffed full of enough games and fun side activities to keep attendees occupied and engaged for the duration of the 25-hour gaming marathon. Tournaments with prestigious trophies were held at the event, pitting players against one another in games like Super Mario Party, Luigi's Mansion 3, and even Untitled Goose Game. A photo booth captured snapshots of attendees throughout the day and night. Live music performances kept both attendees and mall-goers entertained.


    Since 2012, Edmonton Extra Lifers have raised almost $1.1 million CAD for Stollery Children’s Hospital. Extra Lifers in Edmonton raised over $200,000 CAD this year with the West Edmonton Mall event helping to break that incredible total. Part of what made their event so successful was the support they received from local sponsors like: Beamdog, Digital Extremes, EA, Game OVR, BioWare, The Gamers' Lodge, Microsoft, Noms, RetroActive Arcade, The Brick, Animethon, Displayco, DQ Orange Julius, Fragapalooza, West Edmonton Mall, and many more.


    A huge thank you to everyone who has helped make Edmonton's events so successful and fun. The Edmonton Extra Life guild hopes to push that number over $250,000 CAD before the end of the year - if you want to help them reach their goal, consider signing up for their team to raise money yourself or donating to the cause through their Extra Life team page.




    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    Popular streamer and 2019 Extra Life Ambassador Apocalypto_12, AKA Tyler Scheid, just learned about Extra Life this year. Tomorrow, he will be launching a 12-hour stream marathon to support Cincinnati Children's Hospital. At his side will be Wade Barnes, better known as LordMinion777, who ran his own streaming marathon for Extra Life earlier this year. Scheid has a history with Cincinnati Children's Hospital. When he was 2 years old, he was diagnosed and treated there by the caring staff. This weekend, he wants to give back to the institution that helped him as a kid. 


    Earlier this year, Tyler attended Extra Life United and it really opened his eyes to how the organization helps support hospitals and kids all across the US and Canada. He was able to meet some of the kids and feel how Extra Life has worked in their lives to help them live full and happy lives. While explaining why its important to him that he get involved with Extra Life, Scheid said, "As a kid, you don't know any different, and now they get to do everything that they originally couldn't." 



    ASUS and Republic of Gamers both contributed to the stream infrastructure, providing all of the PCs and peripherals that will be used throughout the day tomorrow. This includes everything from the headsets and keyboards to the mouse pads. This sort of support always blows us away, so thank you to both Asus and Republic of Gamers for stepping up like that to help someone raising money for the kids. 


    The stream itself has a robust slate of activities in store for its entire 12 hour duration. Starting at 19am EST tomorrow on Twitch, You can expect to see Apocalypto_12 and LordMinion777 playing Switch and PC games, some surprise guests, and a hilarious twist on bobbing for apples that includes creative punishments. On top of that, champion kids Allison, Calvin, and Cole will be attending the stream to play games with Tyler and Wade as well as give the duo interviews about their experiences at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. There might even be special interview segments from their recent visit to Cincinnati Children's Hospital with nurses and doctors who had a hand in Tyler's treatment as a child. 



    If all of that isn't enough of an exciting incentive on its own, there are also prizes and mystery incentives! Tyler has a goal of $20,000 USD and has something special planned for every $1,000 USD he raises toward that goal. What exactly those things might be, you will have to tune in to see! On top of that, Gamestop has graciously provided Apocalypto_12's stream with $400 USD in gift cards to give away throughout the day. The crowning prize, however, will be a brand new Nintendo Switch provided to Tyler by Nintendo. 


    Finally, we want to give a huge thank you to DonorDrive. Located perfectly in Cincinnati, Donor Drive donated space in their headquarters for the stream itself. It puts smiles on all of our faces knowing we have partners who can help out Extra Lifers looking to do good in the world. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Games You Should Know, a gaming channel and podcast, put together a Game Day event in Calgary with the help of Caravel Craft Brewery. As one of the event's attractions, the diligent and creative group constructed a towering, functional Game Boy that attendees could play with throughout Game Day. 


    Games You Should Know was created by Terence Teske and Andrew Smith. The two host videos and podcasts highlighting games that they believe everyone should know. Smith and one of his best friends, Curtis Braham, took on the task of creating the massive Game Boy. The device was constructed in the hopes that it would draw more attention, and more donations, to the Games You Should Know team. 



    The Giant Game Boy stands approximately 4.5 feet tall. Smith and Braham took special care to get the ratios exactly right to preserve the authenticity of the device. The duo decided to use a Raspberry Pi computer to bring the electrical systems together. The buttons and directional pad are all linked via arcade buttons and a microcontroller before linking to the Raspberry Pi. From there, the Raspberry Pi is connected to the screen, a flat screen television installed within the wooden frame of the larger device. The device links to a car amplifier to accurately simulate the sound systems of the Game Boy.


    The Games You Should Know team managed to bring a lot of eyes to their Extra Life event with the reveal of the Giant Game Boy. They managed to raise over $11,000 USD for Alberta Children's Hospital. This is the team's sixth year of fighting for the kids in their local Children's Miracle Network Hospital. We can't wait to see what they come up with for next year! 


    You can show your support for Games You Should Know and their Giant Game Boy by joining or donating to their Extra Life page


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    On November 2nd, Ubisoft employees showed up to their offices across Canada bright and early to support their local Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. Ubisoft offices in Toronto, Quebec City, and Saguenay opened their doors on the weekend to host Game Day streams. Ubisoft had over 40 people playing games to raise money to help sick and injured kiddos. In total, Ubisoft's efforts raised over $22,000 USD to help kids in several Canadian facilities! 


    Three different branches of Ubisoft organized their own livestreams and fundraising efforts to help children in their communities. Here's just a small look at what each office did on Game Day:


    Ubisoft Toronto



    Ubisoft Toronto worked overtime to help the kids at SickKids, otherwise known as The Hospital for Sick Children. During their stream, they even hosted both the creative director and live producer behind the upcoming open world techno thriller Watch Dogs Legion. With 20 members, Ubisoft Toronto managed to raise over $8,000 USD for the kids. 


    Ubisoft Quebec City




    The 30 members of the Ubisoft team in Quebec City hosted a full 25-hour livestream. They put their efforts behind Opération Enfant Soleil. They had a robust schedule of fun activities including a Super Smash Bros. Ultimate tournament, a showcase of Ubisoft streamers, playing their audience's Mario Maker 2 levels, and a period to show off some tabletop board gaming skills. One of the incentives offered by the Quebec City team was a duet version of the DK Rap performed live! When the dust settled on the stream, the team had raised over $12,000 USD! 


    Ubisoft Saguenay




    A small team entered the Ubisoft Saguenay offices on November 2nd. There were only twelve members, much smaller than the other two teams. However, the team really pulled it together for a 24-hour stream to support the kids of Opération Enfant Soleil, the same facility being supported by Ubisoft Quebec City. Those 12 members managed an impressive feat, reaching just shy of $2,000 USD! 


    A huge thank you to all of the people who turned out to support Extra Life from Ubisoft. It was wonderful seeing you all work together to make sure that the kids who need help in your areas can get the treatments and support they need to survive and thrive. It means a lot to us to see your accomplishments, and we are proud beyond words that you chose to spend your time and effort to support kids through Extra Life. Thank you!


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    SlugFest Games has done a lot for Extra Life in the tabletop gaming space during 2019. Earlier this year, they announced a promotional card themed after Extra Life that would be released exclusively to Extra Life streamers. The card, Water of Life, was compatible with all versions of The Red Dragon Inn, one of SlugFest's most popular tabletop games. Streamers were given the cards to disperse between donors and viewers, making for a very fun and interactive way to support Extra Life. 


    On November 9, SlugFest Games hosted a livestream to raise money for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. Throughout the stream, they gave away lots of prizes to those who were watching and supporting them with donations. The stream was so successful that the company ended up raising over six times their initial goal! To crown off their stream, the team introduced the 50th character coming to The Red Dragon Inn! You can see the reveal for yourselves in the video below.



    You can watch the full stream on The Red Dragon Inn's Twitch channel.


    While their main streaming day might be over and done, you can still support SlugFest Games' fundraising efforts for Extra Life by donating to their page and earning yourself some cool Red Dragon Inn swag! Everyone who donates $5 USD will be given a Water of Life card. $25 USD will net donors the Water of Life and Gold Dragon Gin cards. $100 USD donors will be given the following: A Water of Life promo card, a copy of Gold Dragon Gin, Ohava's Healing Brew, Purified Potent Pixie Power Punch, and the d6 variant of Barroom Brawl. Head over to their Extra Life fundraising page to grab yourself some of these limited edition promotional goodies.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    The Extra Life Guild based in Saskatchewan has pulled together an event this weekend called the Extra Life Saskatchewan Milestone Gaming Marathon. The event will welcome gamers from all walks of life to participate in raising money for Jim Pattison Children's Hospital, a facility that was able to open its doors earlier this year due to partners like Extra Life. Due to donations and fundraising events, Saskatchewan now has its first dedicated hospital for treating mothers and children. 


    The marathon will be held this weekend at the Cosmopolitan Senior Citizens Centre in Saskatoon. It will begin on November 16 at 9am CST and close out strong on November 17 at 9am CST. The event welcomes every kind of gamer who would like to attend, though tickets will need to be purchased either through Eventbrite or at the door. Children 12 years and under will not need a ticket, but will need an adult to accompany them. Additionally, while the event allows all non-electronic games, there are considerations for power and space if attendees want to bring a console or PC. Please contact the Saskatchewan Guild via Facebook before bringing additional electronics to the event. 


    Below are just a few of the events happening throughout the 24-hour gaming marathon:


    • Board games
    • Console games
    • Trading Card Games with Magic: The Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh, and more being featured prominently
    • Tabletop RPGs run for all skill-levels by friendly local Game Masters
    • Fighting Game tournaments for Super Smash Brothers, Tekken, and more
    • Raffles, contests, and tournaments galore!


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    Photos of Jim Pattison Children's Hospital were taken by Lisa Landrie – A Photogenic Life


    Even more is in store for those who attend. “We’re going to have a library of board games, virtual reality, some Jack Box games, 24 hours of D&D, and a local game shop and video game bar are sponsoring consoles and TVs,” explained Nolan, Extra Life Saskatchewan Guild's president. 


    The Extra Life Saskatchewan Milestone Gaming Marathon has been organized by the Extra Life Saskatchewan Guild. As part of the event, the guild is asking all attendees to register to participate on extra-life.org prior to arriving or at the door. This year, the team is aiming to reach $20,000 USD. To register or donate to support their endeavor, please visit the team page


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Extra Life's partnership with Wizards of the Coast has been incredible over the years. This year, Wizards of the Coast managed the incredible feat of managing to raise over $1 million USD! They surpassed that momentous mark this year through the combined might of their D&D Super Team holding fundraising events throughout the year and the incredible efforts of their Magic: The Gathering team. A huge thank you to Wizards of the Coast and all the employees and creators who helped make this achievement possible!


    The D&D Super Team has managed to raise a a colossal sum of over $250,000 USD and is expected to hit $275,000 USD by the time the dust settles at the end of 2019. They reached that incredible number by kicking off a three month campaign with the Founders & Legends Day celebration on July 27, which featured Luke Gygax talking about the origins of tabletop roleplaying as well as several D&D one-shot games.


    With numerous streams and smaller events in between, along with the hard work of D&D players, DMs, and fans working to support their local hospitals, their last major fundraising push happened from October 31 through November 3 with Gamehole Con and on November 9 with Seattle Children's Hospital Game Day. Seattle Children's Hospital Game Day had Wizards of the Coast playing Dungeon Mayhem, the company's D&D-themed card game, and full-tabletop sessions for new players and kids. 


    The other half of Wizards of the Coast's fundraising efforts belonged to Magic: The Gathering. The Magic community really rallied around Wizards this year between more people pitching in on Game Day and the debut of Ponies: The Galloping. Three official Magic: The Gathering cards featuring four of the most beloved ponies from My Little Pony debuted as part of a special collection benefiting Extra Life. The limited edition cards went on sale on October 22 along with a series of matching playmats, sales of which also benefited Extra Life. The playmats and cards sold out incredibly quickly, with the entire offering disappearing almost immediately. During the same time period, Magic: The Gathering auctioned off a series of coveted foil card sheets fresh from their printers. The sheets were sold for thousands of dollars per piece, giving die hard Magic fans a chance to own an irreplaceable piece of the game. 


    In total between the Magic community and the My Little Pony crossover, Magic: The Gathering managed to raise over $875,000 USD #ForTheKids!

    However, 2019 isn't over quite yet! Those who still want to contribute to Wizards of the Coast's Extra Life mission can purchase one or more of the special modules that the D&D team has put together for Extra Life over the years. Past adventures and supplements include: Lost Laboratory of Kwalish, Volo’s Waterdeep Enchiridion, Tortle Package, One Grung Above, and The Lost Kenku.




    This year, the Wizards of the Coast team has outdone them selves and offered not one, not two, but THREE additional adventures and supplements that can be used to spice up your tabletop gaming sessions: 


    • Adventure with Muk offers an adventure into the Dankwood with the plucky Muk and his best friend Birdsquirrel on a quest to find an incredible treasure. Adventure with Muk is meant for all ages and can even be printed out and used as a coloring book!
    • Infernal Machine Rebuild is a short adventure in a ruined clock tower that involves traveling to different times and planes of existence in order to reconstruct the legendary Infernal Machine of Lum the Mad, a fantastical contraption of great power... and great danger.
    • Locathah Rising gives players a short adventure for 9th level characters and the rules for creating locathah characters, a race of fish people that make friends out of sea otters. They're great - and this is the only official way to get these fun, fishy dudes in your games! 


    Remember, every purchase of each of these adventures benefits the kids, with all proceeds going to Extra Life! 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article



    Rooster Teeth has been one of Extra Life's biggest and longest running partners when it comes to streamers looking to do good. We are happy to share with all of you that they outdid themselves this year. Over the course of their stream, the Rooster Teeth team and community managed to raise over $1.2 million USD between donations and merchandise sales! They are well on their way toward hitting their specially LEET goal of $1,337,000 USD by the end of the year.


    The first $1 million raised went to Dell Children's Hospital with everything over that going to the kids at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. The Rooster Teeth team has committed to continue raising money for Dell Children's in the future. In the coming years, the team hopes to raise $3 million USD to continue adding new facilities and programs, like specialized mental health treatment options for kids, to the hospital's campus. In 2018, the team made headlines for their contributions leading to the construction of a healing garden, an outdoor play space for kids at Dell Children's.


    Their stream was absolutely bonkers, topping everything they've done before. Some of the highlights of the night include an honest-to-goodness dog show competition, roleplaying Harry Potter, and a plethora of disgusting and inedibly spicy "foods" being ingested. There was even a professional tattoo artist/Twitch Partner on hand in the form of Kappa Tattoo to give stream participants some ink! And, of course, professional WWE wrestler Xavier Woods was on hand to serve as the stream's Wheel Dragon, a creature born to spin wheels and mete out vengeance to those busy streaming. After a night of craziness and fun, Matt Hullum, Rooster Teeth's Chief Content Officer, came on the stream to close things out. In what is now a yearly RT Extra Life tradition, Hullum played guitar and sang, the rest of the crew joining him to sing "With a Little Help from My Friends."  




    Rooster Teeth's streaming efforts were able to reach a huge swath of the Rooster Teeth community. To mirror the larger goal of $1,337,000 USD, the team put together a tier of elite donations priced at $1,337 USD. In total, the team saw 317 donations made at the elite tier. That left all of us blown away.


    Those who are interested in further supporting Rooster Teeth on their way to their elusive LEET goal still have options! From now until the end of the year, you can join the Rooster Teeth Super Team and play to support the overarching mission of Rooster Teeth as well as kids at your local Children's Miracle Network Hospital.


    If you are looking to get your hands on some of Rooster Teeth's exclusive 2019 Extra Life merch to support the team, it was mostly sold out during the stream. However, Rooster Teeth has announced that they are planning to restock the store soon. As of right now, you can still purchase limited edition pins that will disappear forever once the fundraising push for 2019 comes to a close. Take a look at what's available on the Rooster Teeth store and check back in a few days to see if it has been restocked.


    Thank you to everyone who made Rooster Teeth's massive success possible. Extra Life wouldn't be the same without all of you. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Esports organization Complexity decided to make time in their busy schedule to spend November 2nd gaming for the kids and we couldn’t be more excited. Complexity played for Children’s Health in Dallas and managed to make it half way to their goal over the course of their streaming. We’re absolutely delighted to see more and more major players in the esports scene getting involved with Extra Life!


    Complexity was founded in 2003 by Jason Lake, getting in on the ground floor of the rising popularity of competitive gaming. In the past 16 years, Complexity's teams and players have won over 140 championships across 30 different games. Their success led to gaining the attention of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones who joined the team's ownership in 2017. The team has become one of the leaders in the worldwide esports scene. Earlier this year, Complexity rebranded to associate itself more closely with the Dallas Cowboys. 


    The team turned out to work toward their fundraising goal for 2019. If you are interested in showing your support for both Complexity and Extra Life, you can sign-up to participate alongside Complexity for the rest of 2019. Even though Game Day has come and gone, we are still taking donations through the end of the year. Head over to Complexity's Extra Life page to support Complexity's mission to help Children's Health.



    Extra Life has always been part of the wider gaming landscape. That means we've been growing in the esports space in recent years. That's why we are thrilled to be working with Complexity this year and seeing them participating in events like Game Day. 


    During the holidays next month, Complexity will be hosting a community event for Extra Life. Keep an eye out for more information as we move forward and gear up to participate in that, Complexity fans. 


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    Gordon Hayward, NBA All-Star and small forward of the Boston Celtics, loves games on and off the basketball court. He also love helping the kids in his community who look up to him as a role-model. That’s why for Game Day 2019, Hayward teamed up with Extra Life to game for Boston Children’s Hospital!  


    Hayward has played for the Celtics since July 2017. A handful of minutes into the 2017 season opener, a faulty landing caused him to suffer a debilitating leg injury that put him out of commission for the year. As a result of the injury, Hayward needed multiple surgeries to get back into playing on the court. During his time recovering, he spent his downtime playing Overwatch and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4.


    While stuck in a medical leg brace to help him heal from the surgery, he learned how helpful gaming can be while allowing the body to heal. That inspired him to get involved in Extra Life and help kids at Boston Children’s Hospital. “Gaming was a helpful distraction for me while rehabbing,” explained Hayward, “Gaming can be a distraction tool for kids while they're in the hospital, too. That's just one reason why I'm committed to helping the kids at Boston Children's Hospital.”



    Back in September, Hayward visited Boston Children's Hospital to spend time gaming with the kids. The visit made local Chicago news and kicked off the basketballer's push toward his Game Day stream on November 2. 


    Everything Hayward raises through Extra Life will go to support Boston Children’s Hospital. He’s playing to build up the Every Child Fund's mission at Boston Children's. The Every Child Fund includes the Child Life Program that was designed to help children feel at home and comfortable in the hospital through fun activities, games, and more. The goal is to help kids heal faster by improving their environment and lifting their spirits.


    Hayward set up an Extra Life page and team for his Game Day streaming efforts. His goal for 2019? $10,000 USD! If you want to join Hayward on his mission to help the kids of Boston, donations are being taken throughout 2019. You can even start you own page and host your own event to raise money from your community to help kids in your local children’s hospital.


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

    View full article

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    People tend to struggle with their mental health during the winter months. Shorter days, colder nights, and inclement weather all come together to form a potent cocktail. Those environmental can all encourage isolation, lethargy, and deprive us of precious vitamin D, all of which place additional stress on an individual's mental health.


    No one is immune from a struggle with mental health, not even the kids who come into Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. From the leadership at the top of CMNH to the bottom along with the people we work with in the hospitals themselves, everyone who works for the kids cares about mental health and well-being of the kids who need help. We recognize that exercise, socializing, and getting enough sunlight isn't enough to address the underlying mental illnesses that both kids and adults face. Therapy is sometimes necessary. Other times, patients need medication to address the underlying physical aspects of mental illness.   




    One of the people in the Extra Life community who has been one of the most vocal advocates for mental health issues is Rooster Teeth host, voice actress, and Extra Lifer Caiti Ward. She has taken on the role of a mental health advocate by using her platform to share her journey from the perspective of someone who lives with mental illness. Her efforts have given a human face to conditions that often leave those who struggle with mental health feeling othered. 


    Writing about her experiences graduating from an intensive therapy program in 2015, Ward said the following:


    I know that mental illness unfortunately still has a giant, belittling stigma associated with it, but I also know that one day it won’t. I choose to pretend today is that day, so I’m sharing my graduation of group therapy with you, because I am so proud of myself.


    There's no shame in struggling with your thoughts and feelings - and no shame reaching out for help. Everyone needs a little help sometimes.


    Mental illness, particularly depression, unfortunately affects so many of our youth. That's why we are happy that leaders in the community like Ward can come together to help those struggling in their local areas. The Rooster Teeth team has spent several years raising money for Dell Children's Hospital in Austin. One of their crowning achievements thus far has been a massive contribution to the facilities mental health ward that resulted in the opening of The Rooster Teeth Healing Garden last year. 




    Rooster Teeth's annual Extra Life stream will be this weekend on November 9th. Caiti Ward and the wonderful people on the team will be streaming for 24 hours to make sure that Dell Children's Hospital (and this year Children's Hospital of Los Angeles) will be able to keep helping kids heal their bodies and their minds. You can join their team or donate to their overall goal via their Extra Life page or by purchasing exclusive merch during the stream from store.roosterteeth.com


    It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round! 

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    As Game Day approaches, it can become easy to feel overwhelmed. Here are the 12 things to do before Game Day to make sure you are in the best shape to raise the most money for the kids that you can. Do all of the things on this pre-Game Day checklist and you will be a few steps ahead of the pack when the gaming starts this Saturday!


    1. Facebook Fundraisers




    One of the most helpful tools for grassroots fundraising has been Facebook Fundraisers. On average, people who launch Facebook Fundraisers are able to raise $150 USD more than those who don't. We whipped up some step-by-step instructions on how to go about getting one of your own set up! 


    2. Download the App




    One of the small things you can do to increase your fundraising reach is downloading the iOS or Android Extra Life app. On average, we see people who have downloaded and used the app raise 6% more than those who leave that tool unused.


    3. Check for Matching Donations




    Many employers offer matching donations for employee fundraising efforts. Before Game Day, check in with your company's Human Resources department to see if they offer employer matching. If they do, try to take advantage of that offer for your marathon fundraising. It's an easy way to double the amount of good you're doing for your local kids! 


    4. Make the First Donation


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    One of the most important factors in fundraising is momentum. People are far more likely to donate to a cause when they see that others have done the same. If you make the first donation to your own fundraiser, you can add a bit of momentum all by yourself. Getting into that habit can help you raise up to ten times more for the kids! 


    5. Social Media Graphics




    Posts on social media are more effective when paired with videos or images. If you aren't sure what images to add to your posts, dip into our publicly available Media Kit to find graphics that are suited to your needs! 


    6. Share Our Call to Action



    If you have a social media presence, please share this video to help get as many people into Game Day as possible! Being able to put faces to the kids we are all collectively working to help can go a long way toward helping you raise more money and surpassing last year's record-setting Game Day.


    7. Study Up on Streaming



    If you are new to streaming or need to brush up on the basics, we've got a beginner's guide to streaming that will help you cover the basics of how to set up a stream from scratch, let people know you're streaming, and raise money from your stream. Perhaps most helpfully, the guide also walks newbies through the process of creating a stream bot to help all of those things come together during streams. 


    8. Streaming Overlays




    Theme your stream for Game Day with Extra Life overlays! These are a collection of graphics that go over the screen to effectively brand your stream as an Extra Life fundraiser. Let the world know you're gaming for good on Game Day! 


    9. Livestream Extensions




    We have a new Twitch Extension out now that will help connect your stream with your current fundraising status. This will help both you and your viewers keep tabs on your progress toward your goal as well as your top donors! It's a helpful tool to have in your back pocket, so we put together a handy guide to setting it up:


    10. Upgrade to Platinum




    An easy way to both support Extra Life and earn yourself some fun swag is by upgrading your account to Platinum status. Platinum Extra Lifers earn limited edition stickers for raising $75 USD, a t-shirt at $200 USD, a silver medal at $500 USD, and a gold medal at $1,000 USD. Make sure you upgrade ASAP! 


    11. Use Milestone and Incentives Feature




    One of our newest features this year is the ability to add milestones and incentives to your fundraising goal. We know that often large goals mean having many smaller milestones. Well, now you can add those milestone markers to your Extra Life profile to show everyone else where your smaller goals stack up. Each milestone can be paired with an incentive if you so wish. This can be a really fun way of breaking up an ambitious goal into more digestible chunks. 


    12. Shoot for GFuel




    If you decide that upgrading your account to Platinum isn't doable, you can still raise money and earn fun swag! Every Extra Life participant in 2019 will receive a free GFuel shaker if they reach $100 USD. 


    There are many great incentives out there for reaching fundraising goals for the various teams and super teams that will be participating in Game Day, so look around and find what might make your Game Day even more swagtacular. 


    Don't forget to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games!


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