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Bethesda donates $100,000 to scholarship program for women and minority students

Wolfenstein publisher claims to have made the largest donation in ESA Foundation's history

Bethesda Softworks has made a significant donation to an initiative to bring in more diversity to the development landscape in the hopes of creating broader games experiences in future.

The publisher has pledged $100,000 to the ESA Foundation, a scholarship program run by the organisation behind annual games trade show E3. The foundation supports women and minority students working towards a degree related to video game arts or computer science.

In a blog post announcing the donation, Bethesda claims this is the largest donation since the foundation was established in 2007 and will directly fund 33 scholarships.

News of the donations was actually buried somewhat under details of the Wolfenstein publisher's new marketing campaign, Save Player 1. The firm is highlighting its portfolio of a source of quality single-player experiences in a market often dominated by multiplayer-centric titles.

It's also likely this campaign was inspired by the rampant speculation that AAA single-player games are being phased out following the shock closure of Visceral Games back in October and the cancellation of its single-player Star Wars project.

A former Visceral employee told GamesIndustry.biz such a notion is "totally absurd", but seems enough to help Bethesda get Wonder Woman star Lynda Carter on board for the promotion.

Bethesda's campaign hinges on the fact that it has multiple acclaimed single-player adventures available, including the recently launched Wolfenstein II and Switch ports of Skyrim and Doom. However, in the UK alone, Wolfenstein II's launch sales were 60% behind its predecessor's. Bethesda has also suffered disappointing launches with Prey and Dishonored II over the past year, both single-player games.

Perhaps the new promotion will give these titles a boost in sales.

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