Image Courtesy of Hannibal Hanschke

More gaming companies are freezing their operations in Russia amidst the on-going Russian invasion of Ukraine. Aside from EA and CD Projekt Red halting their sales in Russia, Activision Blizzard, Epic Games, and Microsoft are standing in solidarity with Ukraine.

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Activision Blizzard expresses support for Ukraine.

Activision Blizzard issued a statement of support for Ukraine on their website last March 4th. Company president Daniel Alegre declared that the company is “suspending new sales of and in our games in Russia while this conflict continues.” This means that even in-game purchases will be unavailable in Russia for the time being.

In the same statement, Alegre also announced that the company is actively supporting organizations focused on giving aid to Ukraine. They also set up an “Employee Assistance Program” to assist those in need of emotional support during the on-going crisis.

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Microsoft stops services in Russia as Ukraine rallies for support from gaming and tech companies.

Microsoft also announced a statement of support for Ukraine the same day as Activision Blizzard. President & Vice Chair Brad Smith denounced Russia’s invasion and spoke about it as “unjustified, unprovoked and unlawful.” Aside from halting Xbox and software sales, the company is also banning services of their products including Windows and Microsoft Office.

Microsoft highlighted that their most valuable contribution for Ukraine is ensuring the country’s cybersecurity is intact. This comes after recent cyberattacks target both government and civilian-owned websites based in Ukraine. Smith ended the statement emphasizing that they “stand with Ukraine in calling for the restoration of peace, respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and the protection of its people.”

Epic Games is the latest gaming company freezing its sales in Russia.

Epic Games announced in a tweet last March 6th that they are also “stopping commerce with Russia.”

The company did not make it clear whether the freeze refers to making both games and in-game purchases unavailable, or if it only refers to the games. But Epic Games also clarified that they will not be blocking online features of their games in Russia, stating that “the free world should keep all lines of dialogue open.”

What do you think of companies standing with Ukraine? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.

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