Take-Two stops game sales in Russia and Belarus

The choice was made after "significant consideration"

Take-Two Interactive has stopped its business with the Russian market amid the country’s invasion of Ukraine.

According to GamesIndustry.biz all game sales, marketing and services have been pulled from Russia and Belarus. According to Newzoo data shared with GamesIndustry.biz, Rockstar Games’ Grand Theft Auto 5 – which is owned by Take-Two – is the third most popular game in Russia based on monthly users.

Take-Two’s decision follows the Russian invasion of Ukraine that began on February 24 and sees the company joining the likes of EA, Microsoft, CD Projekt Red and Epic Games in its decision to stop market dealings with Russia.

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Take-Two vice president of corporate communications Alan Lewis said: “We have watched recent events unfold in Ukraine with concern and sadness.”

Rockstar Games' GTA V
GTA V. Credit: Rockstar Games, a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive.

“After significant consideration, last week, we decided to stop new sales, installations, and marketing support across all our labels in Russia and Belarus at this time.”

The Nintendo eShop has also stopped processing payments and gone into what is being called “maintenance mode” in Russia, although as of publication it is unclear if this is Nintendo’s sole doing or that of a third party.

Elsewhere, Take-Two has been served a lawsuit concerning the use of loot boxes in its NBA 2K games, with the plaintiff seeking £3.7million in damages.

The case says that the “defendant’s unfair, deceptive and unlawful practices, including illegal gambling practices, deceive, mislead and harm consumers”. Adding that loot boxes “psychologically distance” players from real-life financial implications, especially minors who have to use a parent or guardian’s credit card information to make the purchases.

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In other gaming news, a new Lost Judgment DLC called The Kaito Files is releasing on consoles at the end of March.

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