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NBA ESCAPE: Have a Positive Impact While You Game

Here at Nerdist we love to support nerdy charity work. Just last weekend we were thankfully able to raise over $100,000 for Children’s Miracle Network in conjunction with our sister site, Geek & Sundry. We owe it to you guys, the wonderful gaming community, who helped to further a good cause. With that being said, we were happy to check out a funky new mobile game that tries something a little bit new. Indie studio Urthworx, lead by Michael Fox, has released a mobile game titled NBA Escape that aims to provide on-the-go fun while simultaneously helping raise money for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

The game plays a lot like Angry Birds, but instead of birds you have shrunken versions of some of the NBA’s best players. You’ll have to fling basketballs around to get points, and obviously put the rock in the bucket. Each player has their own strengths and skills that will come in handy during certain stages. It’s an interesting take on the genre, and NBA stars Roy Hibbert (LA Lakers), Paul George (Indiana Pacers), and Chris Paul (LA Clippers) are involved to make it more authentic.

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The game includes the now standard microtransactions, but it’s a nice approach to try and make money for charity. There’s an in-game meter that, once filled, will lead to a donation to the Boys & Girls Clubs. The bar will fill as you collect more special coins. Two-time All-Star Roy Hibbert is even donating $25k. Nerdist got to ask a couple of questions of players involved.

Nerdist: What do you hope this project accomplishes, charity-wise?

Roy Hibbert: I’m donating $25k to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington’s Youth of the Year Scholarship program. Doing it through NBA Escape is a great way to connect with fans and make them a part of it.

Paul George: A cool game that also raises money to help kids? Enough said.

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N: How did you get involved in the project?

Chris Paul: When I heard about Urthworx, I immediately wanted to know more because of the mix of gaming and social impact. I met the founder, Michael Fox and he showed me NBA Escape and the other cool stuff they’re developing. I was sold.

PG: My old teammate Roy Hibbert [who was already involved with Urthworx] showed me the evolution of NBA Escape from prototype to where it is now. I got hooked on the game and wanted to be a part of it.

RH: My agent David Falk [Michael Jordan’s agent and producer of Space Jam] had already invested in the company. He knows I’m a big gamer and thought I’d like it. When I played NBA Escape, I actually didn’t like it…I loved it.

It’s a refreshing approach to the mobile space. If you’re interested in checking it out, it’s currently available on both Android and iOS devices. The timing is perfect with the NBA season just starting up, and the silly approach is pretty charming.

What do you think about so-called “impact gaming?” Would you like more companies to take this approach? Let us know in the comments below.

Image Credit: Urthworx

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