Ukraine’s government wants ‘toxic’ Atomic Heart pulled from sale over Russia links
The game was released for PC and consoles this week
The Ukrainian government has said it will ask Sony, Microsoft and Valve to pull Atomic Heart from sale on their digital stores in the country.
The game, which features Soviet and Russian military themes, was released for PC, PlayStation and Xbox consoles on Tuesday, just days before the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
It has become the subject of controversy over its ties to Russia, including claims that the Russian government stands to benefit financially from its release due its majority ownership of investors in the game.
Atomic Heart - Combat Trailer | gamescom 2022
In a statement initially issued to Ukrainian website Dev.au (and later in English to PCGamesN), Ukraine’s deputy minister of digital transformation, Alex Bornyakov, urged platform holders to limit distribution of the game in other countries too.
“Regarding the situation with the release of the game Atomic Heart, which has Russian roots and romanticises communist ideology and the Soviet Union, The Ministry of Digital Transformation of Ukraine will send an official letter to Sony, Microsoft, and Valve requesting a ban on selling digital versions of this game in Ukraine,” he said.
“We also urge limiting the distribution of this game in other countries due to its toxicity, potential data collection of users, and the potential use of money raised from game purchases to conduct a war against Ukraine.
“According to media reports, the game’s development was funded by Russian enterprises,” the statement added. “Therefore, we call for all users worldwide to avoid this game.
“We also want to emphasise that the game developers have not publicly condemned the Putin regime and the bloody war that Russia has unleashed against Ukraine.”
In addition to its retail release, Atomic Heart was made available via Xbox Game Pass for console and PC on Tuesday.