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Fortnite bans cash prizes for Russian players amidst Ukraine crisis

Cash prize banned for Russian players (Image via Sportskeeda)
Cash prize banned for Russian players (Image via Sportskeeda)
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Matthew Wilkins

As the Ukraine crisis enters day 15, Fortnite seems to have imposed its own set of sanctions against Russia. Here's what the official announcement read:

"Effective March 11, Russia will be added to the list of countries where players are ineligible to win cash prizes in Fortnite tournaments. Players residing in Russia will still be able to earn in-game cosmetic prizes."

However, given that many players are yet to claim their cash prizes from various tournaments, they will be able to redeem them before March 22, 2022. After the deadline, all cash prizes will be frozen until Epic Games' payment service provider in Russia can resume operations.

Effective March 11, Russia will be added to the list of countries where players are ineligible to win cash prizes in Fortnite tournaments.See blog for more details fn.gg/Competitive-Ru…

Given the number of 'like reactions' on the post, it's clear that many within the community support this move. According to many fans, the cash ban is likely due to political pressure.

However, the truth is more closely related to banking and money transfer services. With financial institutions severing ties with Russia, money transfers are no longer possible.

@MackWood1x Hyperwallet has stopped sending money to Russia.Fortnite use HyperWallet to pay their players.This is why Russia will be unable to compete anymore

Given the developing geopolitical tension, it's likely that this ban will run for an indefinite period of time. This will indeed cause many professional players to stop playing competitively - something that not everyone is happy about. On the bright side, players can still partake in competitions, but are they worth it?


What will become of professional Russia Fortnite players?

Russian players will be able to partake in tournaments in their region. However, those who manage to win will only receive any cosmetics associated with the competition.

With no cash prizes on the cards, most professional players are likely to skip participating in these tournaments altogether. This has led to a few protests on social media, with some claiming that gamers have nothing to do with the situation.

@JakeSucky why would they blame/punish the citizens for the decisions of their government/putin? feel like it doesn’t have anything to do w the gamers of Russo lmao

Unfortunately, there's nothing that can be done for the foreseeable future. Until the situation does not improve, Russian players will be unable to earn any cash rewards in-game.


Will Epic Games ban Fortnite in Russia?

Epic is stopping commerce with Russia in our games in response to its invasion of Ukraine. We’re not blocking access for the same reason other communication tools remain online: the free world should keep all lines of dialogue open.

Currently, there's no information about Fortnite being banned in Russia. However, the sale of games via the Epic Games store has been stopped. But those who have bought games via the platform will still be allowed to play them.

Despite Fortnite servers running in full swing, the future remains uncertain for the battle royale title in Russia. If the situation does not improve, sooner or later, a full-fledged ban may be implemented.


Edited by R. Elahi
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