Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

U.S. Sanctions Block Crimeans From World of Warcraft, Diablo III

A screenshot of Battle.net, the online gaming platform developed by Blizzard Entertainment. Battle.net

Crimean gamers were locked out of playing popular online multiplayer games World of Warcraft and Diablo III on Tuesday, as the games' publisher was forced to suspend the accounts in compliance with Western sanctions.

Major U.S Internet and tech companies such as Apple, Google and PayPal have suspended services to Crimean users over the last year. The United States in December barred U.S.-registered companies from investing in Crimea or providing services to companies there.

Video game developer Blizzard, renowned worldwide for smash-hit titles such as World of Warcraft and the Diablo series of video games joined the chorus on Tuesday, Russian game news site Geektimes.ru reported, citing a copy of the company's notice.

"In accordance with current trade regulations relating to the region of Crimea, we are legally required to suspend access to your Battle.net account," the company's notice read, Geektimes.ru reported.

Blizzard's World of Warcraft is a massive online multiplayer game that has become a global phenomenon, with millions of players subscribed to the game around the world.

Another title published by Blizzard, Diablo III, is no less popular, with 15 million copies sold gaming news site IGN.com reported in February, citing data provided by Blizzard's parent company, Activision.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more