Cats Protection has become the first animal charity to organise a cat-themed Autumn Game Jam.
The charity teamed up with independent game studio Payload Studios and its Tentacle Zone initiative to organise the event which takes place between 9 October and 19 October.
Developers will be invited to devise games featuring cat welfare themes, such as helping cats to maintain a healthy bodyweight to reduce their risk of developing health complications.
Other themes may include the importance of microchipping cats, to promote Cats Protection’s work of reuniting lost cats with their owners.
Game developers will provide feedback to entrants about their game designs, and devised games will later be shared with streamers fundraising on behalf of Cats Protection.
Streamers will then help a panel of judges to select the best games, which will then be made available as free-to-play games on itch.io.
The partnership is part of Cats Protection’s efforts to explore video games as a way of attracting more support for its cat rehoming, neutering, education and advocacy work.
It comes a year after the charity launched its own online community of gamers called Pawsome Players, which has attracted over 100 members and raised around £37,000 through gaming marathons and streaming live content.
Donna Forster, Cats Protection’s senior direct marketing officer, said: “We are very excited about the Game Jam as it offers us another chance to reach a huge gaming community with our cat welfare messages.
“Around 33.5 million of us regularly play games on a range of devices so this could really help to improve the care of cats across the UK.”
She added: “Around one in four adults own a cat* so this is also a great opportunity for developers to reach an army of cat lovers and build their own online gaming communities.”
Russ Clarke, CEO of Payload Studios, said: “We welcome working with a charity that is as impactful and dedicated as Cats Protection. We are happy to offer our support and provide feedback to help game developers aid a cause that might be close to them.”