Earlier today, the Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine called on “all game development companies and esports platforms” to cease operations in Russia due to the ongoing war between the two countries. Mikhail Fedorov’s letter went on to say: “In 2022, modern technology is perhaps the best answer to tanks, multiple launch rocket systems, and missiles.”
Now EA Sports has announced that the Russian national team and Russian football clubs will be removed from all active versions of FIFA. The news followed a reversal by world football leadership (what’s new), who initially reacted to the invasion by saying that the Russian team could continue to play under a new name and without their flag and anthem on neutral venues: a decision that was widely derided in football and outside of it. A few days later, FIFA and UEFA jointly announced the removal of Russia from all competitions.
EA Sports released the following statement:
“EA Sports stands in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and, like many voices in the football world, calls for peace and an end to the invasion of Ukraine.”
“In collaboration with our FIFA and UEFA partners, EA Sports has initiated the process to remove the Russian national team and all Russian clubs from EA Sports FIFA products, including FIFA 22, FIFA Mobile, and FIFA Online. We are also actively evaluating relevant changes. to other areas of our games.”
So: it looks like EA and FIFA have finally agreed on something.
Similar things are happening elsewhere: NHL 22 says it will remove Russian teams in the coming weeks“. There’s no word from FIFA 22’s only competitor, eFootball, but given the real-life suspension of Russian teams, something similar should be expected.
The Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine has a point of view on modern technologies in all their manifestations that exist around ground war: just look at SpaceX, which supplies Starlink terminals to provide Internet access in Ukraine. A huge number of gaming companies have not only spoken out against the conflict but have also raised funds and offered practical assistance to those fleeing the conflict: Ubisoft, for example, offers emergency housing funding and made a separate donation.