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Niantic is ceasing operations in Russia and Belarus as both countries work to wage war on neighboring Ukraine.

Bryant Francis, Senior Editor

March 11, 2022

1 Min Read
A man plays Pokemon Go on an iPhone
Image by David Grandmougin via Unsplash

Niantic is suspending sales, downloads, and gameplay for games like Pokémon Go in Russia and Belarus, joining an increasing sea of companies shutting down operations in the region.

The reason of course, is Russia's invasion of Ukraine that began on February 24. Belarus has also been implicated in several self-imposed sanctions against Russia for its role in providing a staging ground for the attack.

Shortly after the invasion began, Ukrainian vice prime minister Mykhailo Fedorov issued a call for "game development and esports platforms" to halt operations in Russia. Now it seems Niantic has has accepted his request.

"We stand with the global community in hoping for peace and a rapid resolution to the violence and suffering in Ukraine," Niantic wrote in a short statement. 

Though Pokémon Go is Niantic's biggest product, this does also mean that Ingress and Pikmin Bloom are also not available in the region.

The news comes after other major game companies including Microsoft, PlayStation, and CD Projekt (and mobile companies like Rovio, Zynga, and Supercell) suspended operations in Russia in solidarity with Ukraine.

About the Author(s)

Bryant Francis

Senior Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Bryant Francis is a writer, journalist, and narrative designer based in Boston, MA. He currently writes for Game Developer, a leading B2B publication for the video game industry. His credits include Proxy Studios' upcoming 4X strategy game Zephon and Amplitude Studio's 2017 game Endless Space 2.

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