the Nintendo Online Store is one of the easiest and most convenient ways to acquire new Nintendo games and acts as a solid digital infrastructure for recent consoles like the Nintendo Switch. When the eShop goes down, gamers around the world are affected, which can make the Nintendo eShop takedown a show of power. Recently, it appears that all Nintendo eShop sales have been suspended in Russia, a fact that may be related to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
A number of users have reported that the Russian version of Nintendo eShop does not currently process payments. While this may be less explicitly a reaction to Russia’s attack on Ukraine than Microsoft’s decision to suspend all sales in Russia, some still suspect a connection.
According to a support page on the Nintendo.ru website, Nintendo has confirmed that the payment service used by the Russian eShop is not working. An automatic Google translation of the statement in question states that the payment service has suspended the processing of all payments made in rubles. As a result, the Russian Nintendo eShop has been placed in maintenance mode to deal with the non-functional payment service. Considering this happens right before the Wii U and 3DS versions of the Nintendo eShop are permanently shut down, Russian Nintendo fans might be quite frustrated with this turn of events.
One might be inclined to suspect that Nintendo has joined the list of game companies that oppose Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. List of companies now includes Remedy of Max Payne fame, CD Projekt Red and Kyiv-based GSC Game World, with the developer working on STALKER 2: Heart of Chernobyl. Even The Pokemon Company, the brand behind one of Nintendo’s biggest franchises, released a statement declaring their support for Ukraine and donating to a humanitarian aid charity. It would make sense for this to be an announcement that Nintendo is now joining the group of game companies limiting sales in Russia.
However, the statement on the Russian Nintendo eShop site seems to be rather neutral in its wording. This leaves ambiguity as to whether Nintendo was behind the suspension of sales or whether the digital store was actually forced to close because of a third-party payment service provider in the region. Anyway, it appears that, like many other video game outlets in Russia, the Nintendo Online Store is currently closed and may be for some time.
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