The squads are leaving the sports games in response to the invasion of Ukraine
Electronic Arts says it will remove Russian teams from several FIFA games, as well as its NHL series. The national team and all Russian clubs will be removed from FIFA 22, Mobile, and Online, and NHL 22.
This lines up its partners FIFA and UEFA’s recent decision to suspend all Russian clubs and national teams from competition. EA says it is also “actively evaluating” other related changes to other areas of its games. The IIHF also announced a similar ruling over Russian and Belarusian teams.
These moves are in response to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russia. “EA Sports stands in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and like so many voices across the world of football, calls for peace and an end to the invasion of Ukraine,” reads today’s statement.
A statement from EA SPORTS FIFA: pic.twitter.com/v3pZvpblgS
— EA SPORTS FIFA (@EASPORTSFIFA) March 2, 2022
EA is now one of several tech companies who have altered their services in response to the invasion.
The games industry has been issuing responses on the matter throughout the week as well. Several game studios in Ukraine have spoken on the matter, and many studios and publishers are calling for humanitarian support and offering donations, through game sales and their own contributions.
This isn’t the first time EA Sports games have had to respond to real-world issues. In 2020, the Washington NFL team name was updated to a generic one in Madden NFL 21. And last year, Madden replaced Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden with a generic likeness over reports on remarks he’d made.