Gaming firms are halting their operations in Russia to heed the call for help by Ukraine amid the ongoing war between the two nations. Joining the list is now Sony Interactive Entertainment, which has confirmed that it will no longer sell its Playstation consoles or games in Russia. Alongside, Nintendo has also announced a similar stance.
To oppose Russia's attacks on Ukraine and appeal for peace in the country, Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) has announced that it will suspend all of its operations in Russia. This means that the company will no longer, ship its hardware and software to the country, though the existing stocks may be sold. Further to this, Sony will also shut down all its PlayStation stores in Russia. The launch of its celebrated game Gran Turismo 7 also stands canceled in the country.
Other than the sanction on Russia, Sony has also announced a donation of $2 million. The funds will go to two charities - the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Save the Children NGO. Sony says that the funds are meant to help those affected by the Russian invasion.
In a statement to AFP, a spokesperson for Nintendo mentioned a similar move by the company. As per the statement, Nintendo has stopped the shipments of all goods to Russia for the foreseeable future. Other than the support for Ukraine, the uncertainty around logistics and distribution of goods within Russia was also a reason for Nintendo to push the pause on its sales in the country.
Sony and Nintendo's decision comes a week after Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine, Mykhailo Fedorov appealed to international gaming firms for a complete ban on Russia in a letter. Fedorov had stressed that the companies are aware of Russia's "bloody authoritarian aggression" and that they should "do everything possible to protect Ukraine" from its attacks. He said that in 2022, "modern technology is perhaps the best answer to the tanks, multiple rocket launchers, and missiles."
The sanctions on Russia have been going up ever since. From within the gaming industry, EA Sports has announced that it will remove the Russian national team and clubs from the country from its popular video game titles, NHL as well as FIFA. FIFA 22, FIFA Mobile, and FIFA Online will no longer show the teams associated with the country. It specifies that it is even evaluating such changes for other areas of the game. ESL, Ubisoft, Take-Two, Bungie, and other game developers have also announced a similar ban on the country until further notice.
Copyright©2022 Living Media India Limited. For reprint rights: Syndications Today