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Slaughter dragons to save cats in this Elder Scrolls Online charity campaign

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(Image credit: ZeniMax Online Studios)

The Elsweyr expansion to The Elder Scrolls Online (opens in new tab) finally brought dragons to the MMO world of Tamriel. Their flying, fire-spitting presence is bad news for the cat-like Khajiit who live in Elsweyr, but beginning on October 3 it'll be good for the actual, real-life cats (and other fur-bearing creatures) who live among us.

From October 3 to December 9, ZeniMax will donate $1 for every five dragons killed to the Best Friends Animal Society and Four Paws charities. The Best Friends Animal Society is dedicated to promoting and establishing no-kill animal shelters throughout North America, while Four Paws is a European advocacy group "for animals under direct human influence," ranging from pets to the "wildlife entertainment industry." ZeniMax has committed to donating up to $200,000 in the Slay Dragons, Save Cats (opens in new tab) campaign, split evenly between the two charities.

Special events will take place during the charity drive, beginning with Dragon Rise, which offers three unlockable rewards for all Elsweyr players: A Green Dragon Imp pet, a Grim Harvester costume, and the Dragon's Treasure Trove. Dragon Rise begins on October 3, five days before the charity campaign begins, but all dragons killed during the event will count toward the total. Other events include the Witches Festival, Undaunted Celebration, Dawn of the Dragonguard, and the year-ending New Life Festival, which will actually take place after the charity campaign is over but still sounds like a good time.

Offing a million dragons to hit the maximum donation amount is a pretty big task, but it's actually already been done: Bethesda said that more than a million of them have been turned into boots and pocketbooks since the Elsweyr expansion went live in June, so just keeping up that pace over the next few months should be enough to get the job done.

Details on the Slay Dragons, Save Cats charity campaign can be had at elderscrollsonline.com (opens in new tab). Ahead of the launch of the event, ZeniMax is retweeting photos of players' cats (and a few dogs) with the #SlayDragonsSaveCats hashtag on Twitter (opens in new tab). Enjoy!

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.