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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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The plunging value of the Russian rouble has led game maker Valve to impose limits on its online store. It has started putting "region-locks" on games bought via its Steam service in Russia so only people in that country can play them.

Falling oil prices and economic sanctions have conspired to cause the value of the rouble to lose more than half its value against the US dollar this year. Earlier this week one dollar was worth 79 roubles though the currency has recovered since and now $1 buys about 61 roubles.

Valve's move is the first time that region locks have been imposed on games available via the hugely popular Steam service. Valve has yet to issue a comment on its decision to lock games.
Source

I don't know enough about economics to know what the costs of a decision either way would be, but interesting none the less to see consumers in other countries being directly affected by Russian financial issues.

I assume this isn't just an initial activation region lock, but a lock for any Russian cd-key registered and launched outside of Russia.
 

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I think Steam has had region locking for a while now. I know for a couple of years now they ban keys sold via those shady key sites which are usually Russion keys.
 

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Originally Posted by .:hybrid:. View Post

I think Steam has had region locking for a while now. I know for a couple of years now they ban keys sold via those shady key sites which are usually Russion keys.
A different article I read said that they were blocking the trading of gifts out of Russia, Brazil and a handful of SE Asia countries. You can still trade within the country though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
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Originally Posted by .:hybrid:. View Post

I think Steam has had region locking for a while now. I know for a couple of years now they ban keys sold via those shady key sites which are usually Russion keys.
As I understood they only blocked Russian keys activated outside of Russia. But, if you used a proxy for initial activation, you could then play outside. This sounds like a more "all encompassing" block where you couldn't even launch an already activated game outside of Russia.

And... I suspect the "dodgy" key sites are either stolen or genned...
 

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Originally Posted by 98uk View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by .:hybrid:. View Post

I think Steam has had region locking for a while now. I know for a couple of years now they ban keys sold via those shady key sites which are usually Russion keys.
As I understood they only blocked Russian keys activated outside of Russia. But, if you used a proxy for initial activation, you could then play outside. This sounds like a more "all encompassing" block where you couldn't even launch an already activated game outside of Russia.

And... I suspect the "dodgy" key sites are either stolen or genned...
A lot of people are going to be eagerly watching closely.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
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Originally Posted by RagingCain View Post

A lot of people are going to be eagerly watching closely.
I suspect it would not be a retrospective block, only new purchases.

The change is as result of the Rouble's financial crash... so I can't see them changing the rules for games bought when it was stable.
 

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There were other types of regional locks. Ever since Steam store was available in Russia, gamers from there have been complaining that they can’t play their games in English (or other foreign languages they would prefer), only in Russian. That is a big bummer because much stuff is lost in translation and translations themselves tend to be rather poor.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 98uk View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by .:hybrid:. View Post

I think Steam has had region locking for a while now. I know for a couple of years now they ban keys sold via those shady key sites which are usually Russion keys.
As I understood they only blocked Russian keys activated outside of Russia. But, if you used a proxy for initial activation, you could then play outside. This sounds like a more "all encompassing" block where you couldn't even launch an already activated game outside of Russia.

And... I suspect the "dodgy" key sites are either stolen or genned...
I thought using a proxy / VPN to activate region locked keys outside of the region is against their SSA and can have you'r account suspended.

On EA's Origin they don't care and I buy Russian key from legit Russian sites and don't even need a VPN. It always gave me the option to install in English and I get games half price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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Originally Posted by Shaded War View Post

I thought using a proxy / VPN to activate region locked keys outside of the region is against their SSA and can have you'r account suspended.

On EA's Origin they don't care and I buy Russian key from legit Russian sites and don't even need a VPN. It always gave me the option to install in English and I get games half price.
I don't think they care nor ban people for it... just they block the activation temporarily if you try and register a Russian key outside of the region.

That doesn't mean they ban it forever.

But it sounds as if now, to play the game at all after purchase, you must be visible as in Russia... which isn't great for MP games that require low latency and thus no proxies.
 

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Also a few years back I saw threads in which people described using satellite internet and having their IP from Greece or some such. Now my own ISP shows my location as Montreal sometimes even though I might be in Toronto or Ottawa. Montreal is not that far away, but certainly not as close as the border. Who is to say that this technology actually speaks the truth?
 

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I feel like this is something people should be upset with Steam about, not some other topic I can mention...
 

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It's definitely been this way for a while on a lot of games. There may have been an exception for a few, but the majority have had these limits applied to them for a couple years now. Origin gets a lot of flak, but it is one of the services you could often just get a different language pack and stick with a Russian version.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
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Originally Posted by KYKYLLIKA View Post

Also a few years back I saw threads in which people described using satellite internet and having their IP from Greece or some such. Now my own ISP shows my location as Montreal sometimes even though I might be in Toronto or Ottawa. Montreal is not that far away, but certainly not as close as the border. Who is to say that this technology actually speaks the truth?
Not sure what that has to do with anything...
 

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Originally Posted by 98uk View Post

Not sure what that has to do with anything...
Well, here you are in Russia, in your countryside retreat and your steam game says "I no activate in this locale please activate from Russia". You're like "I am in Russia, you numbnut!" And steam is like "Nope, you're in Greece." And it turns out that your sneaky-peaky satellite internet provider is distributing its clients onto greek IPs because they're actually based in Greece.
 

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IBVPN is all I need I have no problem with Russian games some want the key to be activated in Russia and others need to be played thru IBVPN Russia server on steam I have many games like this the only ones that are bad are the ones that only let you do Russian language like Lords of the fallen then you need to find someone who knows a way to put in English files and a lot of time you have to go to sites that are fake and you can get a virus I just hate it when you can dload in english .. sometimes this just cant be done .. So all steam needs to do is make Russian games only dload in Russian language and it will make it a pain to find a English fix ... I hope im not giving them ideas .... but anyways most top games usually come with nvidia cards like assassins creed and the crew and you can buy them cheap on ebay anyways and dont have to worry about any language fix ...
 

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Didn't they ban international gifting as well?
 
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