Atomic Heart: Ukrainian Minister Calls to Ban Russian Video Game Taking World by Storm

Atomic Heart – Official TrailerInternationalIndiaAfricaThe disgruntled Ukrainian government official claimed that proceeds from Atomic Heart’s sales might end up in the Russian budget, and that the game itself is “romanticizing communism.”Ukrainian officials have once again jumped on the “Let’s Cancel All Things Russian” bandwagon, launched last year following the beginning of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine.While Ukrainian presidential office adviser Mykhailo Podolyak bashed Louis Vuitton over perceived reference to the Russian military operation, Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov set his sights on a video game that dares to not portray Russia as the epitome of evil – Atomic Heart.Atomic Heart is a first-person shooter with role-playing elements set in an alternative reality 1950s USSR, where the player assumes the role of Soviet special forces operative thrust into a crisis at the union’s top research hub.Released on February 21, the game garnered generally positive reviews from critics and quickly became a hit on online distribution platforms such as Steam.Fedorov, however, became incensed by the fact that the game is “romanticizing communism,” as he put it, and tweeted copies of the letters he apparently sent to the bosses of Sony, Microsoft and Valve (the developer of Steam) urging them to stop the sales of Atomic Heart.“Brand new level of Russian digital propaganda – using gaming industry,” he claimed.The missives state that the game was developed by a Russian studio, which has “Russian management and offices”, and thus the proceeds from the game’s sales might end up in the Russian budget and allegedly help finance Russian military operation in Ukraine.While many members of the minister’s social media audience echoed his call to ban the game, quite a few netizens mocked him over it, with some noting that such an initiative probably should’ve been started before the game’s launch, not after.