Russia threatens to ban MW2, pulls game from stores

By Justin Mann on November 16, 2009, 1:30 PM
Activision is celebrating many successes with Modern Warfare 2 in general. The game opened up to amazing sales and helped contribute to a record-breaking number of Xbox Live connections. It's not gravy worldwide, however, following some recent trouble the game is dealing with in Russia. Despite an initial passing grade, MW2 is now facing an outright ban in Russia due to controversial content.

In particular the scene in which a player is put into an airport in Moscow has caused an upset, though for what specific reasons hasn't been clarified yet. Neither Activision nor the Russian government has released an official statement on what the situation is, but for now the game has been pulled from shelves in Russian stores. There's also rumors (though nothing official yet) that the game may face an outright ban.

According to some sources, a version of the game stripped of the Moscow encounter is going to be made available, replacing the already deployed Xbox 360 and PS3 copies of the game. For the PC version, whether bought from a store or through Steam, will be patched stripping the content out without having to replace the game altogether.

Though the latter portion may not make players happy, it apparently is sating the Russian government for now, as sales of the PC version are continuing unhindered. Much of this is based on speculation, of course, until Activision pushes out a press release.

User Comments: 24

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Guest said:

The Moscow encounter shouldn't have been playable because it add no consequence for you actions in the encounter (you can choose to shoot or not shoot anyone and get the same outcome). very crappy and lame!!!! How hard is it to make the terrorists react to you actions. IW make a darn trailer of this encounter instead....

Guest said:

I call BS on this!

Few years ago RIAA asked Russian Government to force copyright infringement laws to stop distribution of all content illegally. Russian government told RIAA to shove it.

They wont ban this game, let alone stop sales of this game.

BMfan BMfan said:

As the 1st guest said 'you don't have to shoot the one's and zero's' ,its a game think they would be more worried about all the americans they are killing when they try to take over the state's.

This is just further proof that the stick up most peoples 'donkey' is getting longer.

Darkshadoe Darkshadoe said:

Its not like this is gonna stop anyone in russia from downloading it off torrents..come on

Guest said:

its only a game, people should get the **** over themselves, the mission is taken completely out of context

Guest said:

Summary: I am against Activision's vision for PC multiplayer gaming. Match making is OK but do not take away the choice to play in LAN or dedicated servers ! (yes, it's also a point valid for Starcraft 2)


I could care less about this game but what I find interesting is, essentially, how this game compensates lack of content with an overwhelming marketing campaign AND controversiality.

I do not own the game nor do I plan on buying (so feel welcome to correct the points I got wrong) but from a Russian perspective, there are many potentially upsetting aspects to this game:

- the bad guys are Russian

- Russia IS at war in chechnya vs. an enemy considered to be using terrorist tactics.

- Just like a US citizen is proud to be American, a Russian is proud of being Russian: it's like on the internet, egoes can clash.

- the plot is mainly an excuse for anglo-saxon muscle flexing (at the expense of the Russians)

Now, from both an American and gamer perspective: we have been bashing the Russians endlessly since the end of the cold war so why should their government feel upset this time?

Maybe it is because it comes at a time where the Russian government is finally back on its feet and at its head are (a few) people who take things seriously ? Maybe it is because the game sold 10M+ copies worldwide and it would suck to be shown as losers in such a game ?

It's normal that people feel sensitive about issues both recent and close to their reality. It also happened with fiction WW2 movies right after the war.

In the end, yes, it's only a game and while most people do not care, politics obviously do not. Just for kicks, my gamer side longs for a MW3 with China as the bad guys getting their **** kicked. Not that I have anything against the Chinese or would care about the game but it would be interesting to see how the Chinese government would react to it.

Guest said:

To above post.

Russia is at War now. Do you think they give a flying "F" about a video game? No, neither is Putin who has much bigger fish to fry.

This is another lame marketing ploy to steer things up and to get more attention towards the game it self. Nothing more, nothing less.

Guest said:

Totally agreed !!!

I am glad that you could state it much better and efficiently than I did in my post !

Guest said:

don't you think russia's gonna get into hot soup when they ban this game..i mean this is one of the best game sold...people love Modern Warfare 2!!! i seriously think that they should reconsider banning MW 2

Guest said:

every one is killing everyone in the game.. russians are killing civilians.. americans are killing the english .. english are killing americans .. in the end the english and the main bad guy actually work together a little bit to kill the US general.. so everyone just needs to chill and try to stop worrying bout whos feelings are hurt.. thats what's screwed up with the country anyway.. if you life action fps games this one is awesome if you think this game is so offensive get a life .. its just as offensive to the US if you look at it..

Guest said:

Its only a game i don't see their point!

swing82 swing82 said:

Regarding who is killing who, I think COD: MW3 should be aggressive aliens from outer space crash landing into planet Earth. During the crash all their weapons go up in smoke and they have to sell parts of their ship, which is made of solid platinum, for our weapons, then declare global war.

Let the rampage begin! [AKA Duke Nukem' 12 multiplayer...]

Guest said:

id like to see mw3 with China invading the US. It could be like a reverse wake island, but with the US getting hammered.

Players could then play as China and do the attacking, or as US, and try to defend form the attack.

Guest said:

that is an awesome idea

Guest said:

You have a choice to not play it in the very begining of the game. it says one of the levels is very offensive and you dont have to play it without affecting the rest of the game

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I can understand the touchiness of ruskies on this issue. However, as many of the informed members pointed out / inferred above; usually the game studios always try to make bad guys out of anyone but US ....... hence the issue got blown out of proportions .... I do not see just one country being the sole 'good' influence on the whole world, i mean just see around and you'll know what i mean.

yangly18 yangly18 said:

Didn't they take out the "No Russian" scene in MW2 for russia????

Plus, AMERICA is the bad guy in the end WTF russia get over it!!!

Guest said:

**** russia they ***** about everything because the are always drunk off vodca. 95% of russias population is wasted 24/7

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

**** russia they ***** about everything because the are always drunk off vodca. 95% of russias population is wasted 24/7

You are right; probably thats why their population trend is getting bit negative lately

Guest said:

Yeah, really ****ing great. Thanks for ruining the plot line *******.

And to the Russian's who have their knickers in a twist:

At the beginning of the game, it specifically ASKS if you would like to play the 'offensive' level.

It's not that offensive, you don't even have to shoot anyone unarmed, you can leave the civilians alone and deal with the police and guys-with-the-riot-shields.

Plus, it's not like we (America) haven't poked fun at the Russians before. I mean c'mon, whenever my cousins (grade school) see planes in the sky, they start screaming "THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING, THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!".

We haven't entirely forgotten the Cold War, have we, eh?

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The Cold War was nothing more than a Paranoia hiked up by both sides of the divide, in some instances more so by the 'colonial mindset' on the other side of the Atlantic.

I wonder why this thread is still unlocked.

Guest said:

you dont even have to play the level anyway! by the way when they say ban they mean just in russia right?

Guest said:

wait wat about bad company 1 and 2 are they not getting pissed at that russians are the bad guys there to

Guest said:

I have not played MW2 in a while.....

Yet I remeber the game warning me about that level,

why ban the game

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