In November, Blizzard released a Pandaren Monk in-game pet for World of Warcraft on the company's online store, with half of the proceeds from the sale pledged to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The $10 item generated $1.1 million for charity.
The Pandaren Monk, an adorable little anthropomorphic panda that follows players around as they explore Azeroth, was one of two in-game pets Blizzard introduced in early November, the first virtual items for World of Warcraft offered in the Blizzard store. Both the Monk and Lil' KT were priced at $10 apiece, but only the panda man there would split his proceeds with the Make-A-Wish Foundation until the end of the year.
Doing a quick bit of math, that means that Blizzard sold 220,000 Pandaren Monks between the release in November and December 31st. That's some impressive numbers right there.
"We've had a long relationship with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and we're proud to support the priceless work they do for children," said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. "This donation also reflects the spirit and generosity of our players – their enthusiasm for World of Warcraft and for supporting a good cause made this possible."
Let's keep in mind that this promotion also generated $1.1 million in sales for Blizzard, who I am certain didn't spend that much creating an in-game pet. Everybody wins!
Blizzard teasing aside, this is a tremendous show of support from World of Warcraft players, adorable in-game pet or no, generating an impressive amount of money in a short period of time for those who need it the most.
"Thanks to Blizzard Entertainment and World of Warcraft players around the world, we will be able to grant the heartfelt wishes of even more courageous children with life-threatening medical conditions," said David Williams, Make-A-Wish Foundation of America president and chief executive officer. "This generosity is helping us bring hope, strength and joy to children when they – and their families – are facing an unimaginably difficult time in their young lives."
Well done, WoW fans!