Video Game and Online Casinos Suspends Products and Services to Russia
One after the other, major international corporations have announced that they are suspending activities in Russia as a result of the conflict in Ukraine. This past week, Russia’s food, online casino sites, automobile, and technology industries were all affected by suspensions.
Aside from European Union and United States sanctions, firms are also trying to apply pressure on Russia’s economy.
The video game industry taking action
After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, video game businesses are halting their operations in Russia.
Cyberpunk 2077 and The Witcher, the popular role-playing game series, were both published by CD Projekt, a Polish company, which announced on Thursday that it will cease all sales in Russia and Belarus. All sales of GOG games in the nations will be halted, as well.
CD Projekt’s sales in Russia and Belarus accounted for about 9% of total sales in the past year, based on multiple reports provided to investors.
Russia’s national team and all of its clubs will be removed from Electronic Arts’ FIFA and NHL series on Wednesday. Earlier this week, the firm said that it has taken things a step further and is no longer allowing any games or content to be sold in Russia or Belarus.
The video game giants
Microsoft and Sony have been urged by Ukraine’s Digital Minister Mykhailo Fedorov to disable any Russian or Belarusian profiles and cancel any upcoming video game-related events in the two countries. Requested companies not to allow Russian or Belarusian players to compete at international gaming competitions such as the World Championship of Esports.
To help the victims of this catastrophe, Sony also announced a $2 million commitment to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and Save the Children.
The difficulties of handling and shipping actual items are extremely volatile, hence Nintendo has decided to halt all shipments to Russia for the conceivable future. They announced last week that they had taken down their Russian Nintendo eShop due to a suspension of Russian roble transactions by their payment provider.
Online casinos are also making their move
Earlier this week, PokerStars (a popular online betting hub) declared that it will no longer serve the Russian market. Every one of their services in Russia has been halted, and no explanation was offered for this decision. It doesn’t take a PhD in world politics to figure out that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is to blame.
Online poker room joins a slew of prominent corporations that have said they will no longer be exporting cars to Russia in the previous week or so: Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Spotify, and Netflix.
As a result of the “uncertainties” surrounding the project, NagaCorp Ltd, the Cambodian hotel and casino facility operator, said that it will put an end to its gaming and resort construction plans for Vladivostok, a city in eastern Russia.
In many places, the initiatives by PokerStars and other corporations have been applauded. There are many people who believe that corporations must do something, even if they aren’t able to sway Vladimir Putin in any meaningful way.
Esports also takes a hit
The Esports industry has also been affected by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The Esports sector in Russia is quite large. Esports Earnings’ list of the world’s highest-paid Esports players includes eight Russians, including Yaroslav “Miposhka” Naidenov at the 11th spot.
ESL, the German Esports organization, announced on Tuesday that it will not let Virtus.pro and Gambit compete in the ESL Pro League next June because of CS:GO teams.
ESforce Holding, a subsidiary of Russian tech business Mail.ru, owns Virtus.pro, while MTS owns Gambit. This means that players from both teams can compete in the tournament under a non-representative pseudonym.
Does all of this make a difference?
Losing the video game industry’s support for Russia could just have a big impact on the economy of the country. According to a research firm, Russia’s gaming sector will be valued at $2.3 billion in 2021.
Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo are three of the world’s largest video game distributors. To date, Apple and Google have already implemented limited sales in the country and pulled Russian state-owned consumer outlets from their respective app stores.
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