Games Workshop, the company that produces the two popular Warhammer miniature wargame lines, announced it will no longer sell products in Russia to protest the ongoing military invasion of the sovereign nation of Ukraine.
The brief statement posted to the Warhammer Community blog on March 16th states that Games Workshop will cease sending anything related to Warhammer 40k or Warhammer: Age of Sigmar into Russia for the indefinite future.
“We are terribly saddened by the horrific events taking place in Ukraine. Our heartfelt thoughts go out to all those affected by Russia’s actions,” the blog post reads. “In light of this, Games Workshop is suspending all sales of Warhammer products into Russia. We didn’t take this decision lightly. We know that there are many Russian hobbyists who don’t condone the war. Yet, we must stand with those suffering.”
The post makes no mention of products on the shelves of local game stores or other independent retailers located inside Russia but likely means direct international shipping to individuals will no longer be an option as governmental sanctions against Russia have already restricted or cut off the flow of other goods and services.
While wargaming supplies might not be as critical as food, medicine and energy, Games Workshop joins an increasing number of companies in the tabletop industry showing their support to Ukraine and the people affected by the Russian invasion. Board Game publisher Ares Games is auctioning off the last collector edition copies of The Battle of Five Armies to raise relief funds, and Polish-based outfit 11 Bit Studios announced it would donate revenue from remaining sales of its Kickstarter-funded This War of Mine: the Board Game to Ukrainian humanitarian groups.
Stonemaier Games, the publisher behind Scythe, decided to cut all ties with its Russian localisation partners in order to keep any revenue from benefiting the invading country, though it explicitly stated no ill will towards the people working at those affected companies. Modiphius pooled the sales of its digital tabletop RPGs, which includes the Dishonored RPG and the recently released Dune RPG, over a given period and donated the amount to various relief charities.
Two prominent games bundles - one focused on tabletop RPGs and the other including around 1,000 digital and analogue titles - offered players across the world to pool fundraising for Ukrainian citizens fleeing the country or otherwise trying to remain safe during the continued military action. The Bundle of Ukraine managed to raise an astonishing $6,000,000 to benefit the Ukraine: International Medical Corps and Voices of Children, which focuses on youths affected by the fallout of military conflict.
When the Russian invasion began in earnest in February, numerous Ukrainian-based publishers, studio, distributors and localisation companies released statements of solidarity and urged players to donate blood and money to medical efforts and spread words of support in their international communities. Some based in cities such as Kyiv launched Patreons to provide a direct way to keep their employees and workers afloat during unstable times, while others took to social media as they fled Ukraine with countless others.