In an effort to raise much-needed awareness of the problem of online bullying, Pixelberry Studios - made up of former EA employees - has added some cyberbullying-themed quests and content to its iOS game High School Story.
By doing this, Pixelberry hopes to help the thousands of teens playing the game to overcome cyberbullying by practising preventative techniques in the game.
Pixelberry CEO Oliver Miao can relate to the problem of cyberbullying on a personal level after being bullied at school himself.
"For me, one of the worst things about being bullied was feeling like there was nobody I could turn to for help," Miao said.
"Pixelberry is excited to be using High School Story to help teens learn how to stop cyberbullying. Based on statistics from the Center of Disease Control, we're estimating that 80,000 of our players could attempt suicide this year."
Pixelberry worked with the online bullying charity The Cybersmile Foundation to create the cyberbullying-themed quests.
In High School Story, you encounter a victim of cyberbullying named Hope, and must help her to tackle her problem. You do this by making use of "sensitive, realistic messaging" techniques created in collaboration with The Cybersmile Foundation.
Pixelberry also added a special in-game donation item that you can buy with real money. This money is then sent directly to The Cybersmile Foundation. So far, High School Story players have donated over $100,000 to the charity via this method.
You can play High School Story yourself by downloading it from the App Store for free now.