COVID-19 esports Fundraiser gaming philanthropy YANA

YANA Looks to Unite Gamers and Non-Gamers Alike

As the world has come crashing to a halt, many are feeling lonely. It’s something we all face as “Stay at Home” orders continue to extend and travel is limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

One event is looking to combat that this weekend. YANA – You Are Not Alone – was founded by Edge CEO Adam Whyte, not only to raise funds for COVID-19 relief, but show that gaming can create light in the darkness, as a social escape.

“Six weeks ago I was tired of listening to COVID news,” said Whyte. “I was scared, lonely, and sad that people were losing their jobs. But I had my partner and I had gaming. And I thought ‘Aren’t we lucky to have those two things? Wouldn’t it be great if more people got into gaming during this time of isolation. So I sent a few emails and got some great people excited for this.”

On May 2nd from 05:00 BST to 0100 BST May 3rd some of the biggest names in, and out of, gaming will broadcast from all around the globe to support social gaming, and fundraise for COVID-19 relief.

Participants include:

  • Kinguin
  • Riot Games
  • Barclays
  • Ubisoft: Rainbow Six Siege: Na’Vi vs. Team Secret
  • Tencent: PUBG Mobile
  • Premiership Rugby
  • And more!
YANA games

While the event itself supports gaming, it’s also a fundraising event for The Children’s Society – a UK charity aimed at improving the lives of children, especially right now during the coronavirus global pandemic. 

“They’re embracing the gaming community and being very authentic,” said Whyte of Children’s Society. “They’ve been incredible with us. Them getting into gaming shows how everyone’s embracing gaming right now.”

While YANA has been organized in just the time span of six weeks, Whyte doesn’t see this as a one-off event.

“I would love to work with brands who really appreciate and understand the space. I want us to engage deeper with broadcast platforms to bring them a sustained content schedule.”

YANA’s main event will take place across its main channels on Twitch and Facebook Gaming, but there are also ways for viewers to get involved! Anyone can sign up on to participate individually and play throughout the day.

See you there!


Riot Games Twitch Valorant

VALORANT offers new opportunity for FPS players

The plurality of Riot Games is finally coming to fruition. Originally dubbed “Project A”, VALORANT, the developers take on a first-person-shooter, has just hit closed beta with a bang after an exclusive alpha phase limited to certain content creators.

With Riot’s partnership with Twitch, VALORANT broke Twitch’s single-day hours watched record in a single game category just within the first few hours of the Closed Beta Tuesday, April 7th. VALORANT surpassed 1.7 million peak concurrent viewers – which is second only to the 2019 League of Legends World Championship Finals.

All eyes are on VALORANT right now as the new hot thing in gaming, and in esports. It offers an opportunity not only for seasoned players to try something new, but for newer FPS players who may find it difficult to “break through” in other games and esports.

Riot is known as a powerhouse in esports with how it handles League of Legends, and while the system for VALORANT will be different, it actually gives more opportunity for lower-level players. By splitting tournaments into three tiers – small, medium, and major – players will have chances to grow from competitions at every level.

There is so much untapped talent in FPS games that VALORANT could really be a place for players to get their shot. As it’s the hottest thing right now large organizations are really going to be looking to get teams organized. Teams like Ninjas in Pyjamas and T1 have already signed teams to prepare for not only when the game launches completely, but when Riot announces it’s esports plan.

Riot’s approach to making sure the hype train keeps chugging creates a special challenge for new content creators, though. By making beta access hunters watch hours of someone else’s stream, Riot is unofficially promoting these pre-selected streamers as VALORANT’s default stars and now, everyone that streams can drop VALORANT beta access. For all you content creators out there, find a unique angle, your unique voice, do something different than what you’re seeing so far. When you create VALORANT content that is uniquely you, the community you attract will be with you for life. See you in-game!