Sea Shepherd France tricks gamers in April Fool’s awareness creative

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For April Fool’s Day, conservation charity Sea Shepherd France targeted influencers who play “Dave the Diver” with a game called “The Final Boss” as part of a tongue-in-cheek campaign through socially-led creative agency We Are Social.

Sea Shepherd France and Paul Watson

In “The Final Boss,” aspiring fishermen find themselves facing an unbeatable final boss: none other than Captain Paul Watson, the illustrious activist and founder of Sea Shepherd. To confront them with the consequences of their actions, he has emptied the ocean of all its fish.

Dave The Diver is a video game that has been attracting millions of players for several months, who fish thousands of fish and species in-game every day, some of which are protected and threatened with extinction, in order to put them on the menu of their virtual sushi restaurants.

Players must face a number of bosses who try to stop them, including ‘John Watson’, a thinly disguised parody of Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson.

Sea Shepherd France and We are Social have added a little joke to convey an important message: raising awareness among the gaming community – and more broadly the general public – about the disastrous consequences of poaching and overfishing on the ocean and to raise awareness about marine life conservation.

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The campaign, which launched 1 April, saw hundreds of emails sent to influencers and content creators who play the game, announcing a mysterious new version: “The Final Boss”, a DLC with an unbeatable final boss, downloadable here.

On opening the new version, the recipient realises they’ve been tricked. A cinematic of the “Final Boss” starts, and it’s Paul Watson himself who appears, as the saviour of the oceans and a nightmare for gamers.

Paul Watson’s message is clear: now players will have to face the consequences of their actions in the game – fishing in an ocean emptied of its fish, caused by the overfishing of Dave The Diver players.

Sea Shepherd France and We Are Social developed a mod to remove all the fish from the game. This unique approach by the conservation charity aims to convey its message to the gaming community, embodied by its founder himself, to remind them of the sad reality of the ocean and to change their perspective on it.