Digital Extremes, the developer behind free-to-play third-person shooter Warframe, is pulling out of Russia and Belarus. This is being done in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which has claimed the lives of over a thousand civilians and many more thousands of soldiers on both sides.
"Digital Extremes stands united and in solidarity with the people of Ukraine, upon whom unconscionable violence has been wrought,” wrote the Warframe developer in a statement. "Last week, in an effort to assist the people of Ukraine and help ease their burdens during this time of crisis, we donated $100,000 CAD to the Canadian Red Cross to directly support relief efforts.
"Additionally, we have made the decision to further support victims of war by suspending all payment options in the Russia and Belarus regions, including Platinum and Bundles offered through our first-party partners, the in-game Warframe Market, and those directly available through Warframe.com."
Warframe players outside of Russia and Belarus will be unaffected, but those who live inside both belligerent countries will be unable to make any purchases in Warframe. This includes Warframe’s physical merchandise store as well. Warframe’s servers will continue to be accessible and players will still be able to accrue in-game Platinum in trades (Warframe’s premium currency), but it's unclear if Russian or Belorussian players will be able to spend it.
Digital Extremes joins a growing chorus of game developers and publishers who are condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by pulling out of the country. Other companies include Take-Two, Ubisoft, Epic Games, Microsoft, Nintendo, CD Projekt, and more. CD Projekt is estimated to be sacrificing 5% of its annual revenue by exiting Russia, and though we don’t know Warframe’s exact player distribution, it’s likely around a similar percentage for Digital Extremes.
Developers are also helping Ukraine with donation drives to Ukrainian charities. Itch.io’s Bundle for Ukraine has already raised $2 million on its first day, and it still has 8 more days to go.
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