EA has announced that it has “initiated processes” to remove Russian teams from its FIFA 22 and NHL 22 titles.
EA posted statements to the official EA Sports Twitter accounts for FIFA and NHL about its decision, which is a reflection of sporting sanctions instituted by EA's partners FIFA, UEFA and the International Ice Hockey Federation.
In the statement from the FIFA twitter account, EA Sports says that it “stands in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and like so many voices across the world of football, calls for peace and an end to the invasion of Ukraine.”
EA says that, in line with its partners at FIFA and UEFA, it will “remove the Russian national team and all Russian clubs from EA Sports FIFA products including: FIFA 22, FIFA Mobile and FIFA Online”, adding that it’s “also actively evaluating related changes to other areas of our games.”
A statement from EA SPORTS FIFA: pic.twitter.com/v3pZvpblgSMarch 2, 2022
In a statement posted to the EA Sports NHL account a minute afterwards, EA says, “following the IIHF’s suspension of all Russian and Belarusian national and club teams from IIHF competitions, we will be removing these teams from NHL 22 within the coming weeks.” EA closes out its statement by voicing support for the people of Ukraine and joins “the voices around the world calling for peace.”
A statement from EA SPORTS NHL: pic.twitter.com/2uX4h55ok4March 2, 2022
This announcement from EA comes a few hours after Ukraine's Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, published an open letter on Twitter, addressing the gaming industry and asking it to do more.
In the letter, Fedorov calls upon PlayStation, Xbox, and “all game development companies and esports platforms” to temporarily block support for Russian markets amidst the Russian invasion of Ukraine and to “do everything to protect Ukraine, Europe and finally, the entire democratic world from bloody authoritarian aggression”.
EA has said it will keep its "communities up to date on any actions taken" and thanks players for their patience.
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Emma Boyle is TechRadar’s ex-Gaming Editor, and is now a content developer and freelance journalist. She has written for magazines and websites including T3, Stuff and The Independent. Emma currently works as a Content Developer in Edinburgh.