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Coffee Stain expands Levelling the Playing Field to fund racially diverse studios

Publisher also makes its third investment through the program, in Happy Broccoli Games

Coffee Stain Studios has announced that it has expanded its diverse studio funding program, Levelling the Playing Field, to include studios employing teams of racially and ethnically diverse individuals, as well as women and non-binary individuals.

The program, initially launched in 2018, was originally intended to finance small studios or startups where women or non-binary individuals equaled or outnumbered men on the company rosters.

So far, the fund has backed Other Tales Interactive and Kavalri.

Under its new criteria, Levelling the Playing Field will support studios with teams that are 50% women, non-binary individuals, or individuals from a variety of backgrounds and cultures.

Additionally, Coffee Stain announced today it has funded its third studio -- Happy Broccoli Games, which is currently working on groundhog-day adventure game Kraken Academy.

"Following the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and so many others, along with the continued rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, we all felt that we should help in some way," said Coffee Stain world designer and writer Hannah Beuger.

"When Levelling the Playing Field was founded, we decided to focus on gender imbalance because we felt we had enough understanding of the issue to address it. As women we understand what other women face and how to help them, we could draw from our own experience.

"Most of us aren't people of colour, and we had, and still have, so much to learn in terms of how to help, but despite that, we felt we should not wait any longer with broadening the initiative and giving other important voices a platform. We're hoping this can be a start, and we're excited to encourage even more diversity in the industry and its projects."

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Rebekah Valentine

Senior Staff Writer

Rebekah arrived at GamesIndustry in 2018 after four years of freelance writing and editing across multiple gaming and tech sites. When she's not recreating video game foods in a real life kitchen, she's happily imagining herself as an Animal Crossing character.

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