As protests take place across the United States, we’ve seen many game companies this week announce plans to delay new content releases or reveals. Today, Rockstar Games went in a new direction, announcing that it will be shutting down its online games for a two-hour period this afternoon in honor of George Floyd, who was killed by police in Minneapolis on May 25th.
That two-hour period is underway now, and will run until 4PM EDT today. During that time, the online servers for Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption 2 will be inaccessible. “Black Lives Matter,” Rockstar wrote in a tweet today. “To honor the legacy of George Floyd, today, 6/4/20, from 2:00-4:00 p.m. ET, we will be shutting down access to our online games, Grand Theft Auto Online and Red Dead Online.”
In a follow up tweet, Rockstar urged people to further honor “the many victims of America’s racial injustices” by supporting families impacted by police violence, supporting black-owned businesses and those marching in protest, and donating to the organizations listed on Charity Navigator’s Civil Rights page.
Rockstar isn’t the only gaming company to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter protests this week. Earlier this week, Sony made the decision to delay a PlayStation 5 games showcase that was originally slated for today, saying that it wanted to “stand back and allow more important voices to be heard.”
Activision, similarly, announced that it won’t be shipping the new seasons for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Mobile now, saying, “Right now it’s time for those speaking up for equality, justice and change to be seen and heard.” Neither Activision nor Sony have given new dates for the content and presentations that were delayed, but we’ll let you know when that changes.