The fourth quarter studio announced that potential buyers of Loop Hero, located in areas affected by economic sanctions, should pirate the game. Due to sanctions imposed after Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, some customers in Russia may not be able to purchase games on Steam using regular payment methods.
Russian independent studio – Does not support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine– Encouraged its followers to “help raise the pirate flag” in a March 27 post on its official VK account. It also shares a torrent link.
When a user asked how to support the studio during the ongoing crisis, the Q4 account wrote (via Google Translate): “We can handle it, thanks. If there is such an opportunity [for you to provide support] Take better care of your loved ones and friends. “
After that article got a lot of attention, two out of four follow up Loop Hero development update, reiterated that “seeds are no problem” and received many donations. The ongoing update work is 80% complete and will continue “soon”. I reached out to a Devolver spokesperson for comment and will update if I hear back.
While customers in Russia may not be able to buy games on Steam and other platforms, the situation is even worse for game developers. Steam payments stalled not only in Russia but also in Ukraine and won’t start paying until April, Taylor reported earlier today. Valve acknowledged the situation, writing: “We know this is very frustrating for everyone involved and hope to find a better solution soon.”
Many companies make clear statements about their operations in Russia, such as Microsoft and sony Stop sales and block the entry of stores in the country. Valve – perhaps unsurprisingly – has not made any such claims, but inevitably needs to comply with sanctions imposed by the US government.