Fortnite raises US$144 million to support humanitarian relief in Ukraine

All proceeds from the battle royale game in the last two weeks were donated.
All proceeds from the battle royale game in the last two weeks were donated. Photo credit: Getty Images

Fortnite players, along with creators Epic Games and Xbox, have raised US$144 million (NZ$207 million) to support people impacted by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Epic, still involved in an ongoing legal battle with Apple over the battle royale game being available on iOS platforms, tweeted the total amount raised overnight.

"Our deepest thanks to everyone who joined us in supporting humanitarian relief efforts for people affected by the war in Ukraine," the company said.

Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, followed up by praising both gamers and Epic Games.

"Really incredible to see how the gaming community can have impact beyond the playing of games," he wrote.

"Thank you @FortniteGame for putting this together, inspiring to see the results."

The US$144 million will be split between organisations Direct Relief, UNICEF, the UN World Food Program, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and World Central Kitchen.

It'll go to support the humanitarian relief efforts of those affected by the war, the company said.

It had previously announced that all Fortnite proceeds from March 20 to April 3, 2022 would be donated, with Xbox joining to ensure net proceeds from the game were also handed over.

The organisations receiving donations "are on the ground providing emergency aid, including health support, food and clean water, essential supplies, legal aid, and shelter," the company said.

It had also committed to getting the money to the organisations as quickly as possible, and wasn't waiting until the end of the donation period.

"We're not waiting for the actual funds to come in from our platform and payment partners, which can take a while depending on how the transaction was processed," it said.

"As transactions are reported, we'll log them and send the funds to the humanitarian relief organisations within days."

While countries have used sanctions to target Russia after its widely condemned invasion of the neighbouring country, the conflict has seen more direct cyber action than many previous wars.

This has included the Anonymous hacking collective taking over Russian television and sending automated texts to Russians to tell them the truth about the war, and the Ukraine government asking for cryptocurrency donations to help.