RSPCA launches Facebook social game 'Rescue Shelter' created pro-bono by 3RD sense, Sydney

Screen shot 2011-05-16 at 11.43.48 AM.jpgMove over FarmVille, social gaming in Australia is about to get a lot more charitable with the launch of RSPCA Rescue Shelter, created pro-bono by 3RD sense, Sydney.

The Facebook game is an Australian first for a not-for-profit, transferring the day-to-day work of the RSPCA from the real world to the virtual world.
RSPCA Rescue Shelter tasks the player with building and running their own animal shelter. Just like a real life shelter, sick, injured and abandoned animals arrive at the shelter and the player must house, feed and care for them.

Players are given in-game cash 'Silver Paws' to purchase enclosures, buy food, employ qualified staff and more. Players can also earn 'Paws' by helping animals recover and adopting them out. But, just like in the real world, their animal shelter can always do with more and players are able to purchase 'Gold Paws' with real money to significantly increase their buying capacity in the game. All revenue from in-game cash purchases goes to the RSPCA to help care for their real world charges. 

"Just like the RSPCA in the real world, players will be asked to care for many different animals from many different backgrounds and most of them will need significant care and attention. The RSPCA is excited to get the opportunity to translate our work into the virtual world to give people an understanding about the daily challenges we face," said Heather Neil, CEO RSPCA Australia.

Screen shot 2011-05-16 at 11.47.20 AM.jpg"Last year more than 150,000 animals sought refuge in RSPCA shelters. Some had been surrendered, some neglected and others were victims of terrible cruelty. The most rewarding part of our work is rehabilitating those animals and adopting them into new loving families so we want to share that joy with players too."

"The RSPCA could not have embarked on this exciting new venture without the significant pro bono support of the game's developers 3RD sense."

The developers of the game are Sydney-based 3RD sense, who have charted the rise of Facebook social games and early-on identified that Facebook was changing the profile of the typical online game player.

'Today's online game player is more often than not a woman in her 30s who plays with and against her friends on Facebook,' said Colin Cardwell, CEO of 3RD sense. 'Farmville, Cityville and other social games have shifted online game-play to a much wider demographic. Over half of all Facebook users play Facebook games and more than 40% of time spent on Facebook is playing games. And a proportion of them are happy to spend money to excel in a game. When you combine that desire with the altruism of contributing to the essential work of an organisation like the RSPCA, the potential is obvious.'

RSPCA Rescue Shelter launches today in beta release. Players can access the entire game, but in addition to playing, RSPCA and 3RD sense are inviting players to provide feedback and report bugs. The game will evolve as a result of user feedback over the coming months.


Anonymous said:

there's so much work for rescuing pets these days, there ain't going to be enough dogs to go round.

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