Xbox will roll out a Ukrainian storefront and native accounts, the country’s Vice Prime Minister has confirmed.
Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, Myhailo Fedorov, has revealed that he’s spoken to Microsoft president Brad Smith in Davos, Switzerland. Fedorov shares that Microsoft will collaborate with Ukraine to document war crimes and damages for UN agencies, while Xbox will roll out a storefront and accounts for native Ukrainian players.
Caught @BradSmi in Davos. Ukraine will cooperate with @Microsoft team on documenting damages & war crimes for UN agencies. Company will participate in rebuild process by leading digital industry. And long-waited news for our gamers: @Xbox will go Ukrainian. 🇺🇦 accounts & store.May 23, 2022
This will mark the first time Xbox players in Ukraine will have access to their very own regional storefront, and be able to create accounts native to specifically Ukraine. It comes as something of a surprise that Ukraine didn’t previously have both these features available for Xbox gamers, although Fedorov’s tweet gives no timeline for the new functions.
Fedorov was quick to call on both PlayStation and Xbox to suspend sales in Russia earlier this year in March, in the immediate wake of Russia invading Ukraine. Microsoft, for its part, was quick to respond, halting digital purchases and physical shipments to Russia (opens in new tab) and Belarus merely 48 hours after Fedorov’s call.
Elsewhere, other gaming companies have been raising money for Ukrainian relief efforts. Fortnite’s Ukraine fund finished with a massive $144 million raised last month in April, while the Indie Bundle for Ukraine offered well over 1,000 games from artists and developers across the globe for $10 to raise funds. From earlier this year in March, you can read our feature on how the video game industry is rallying around Ukraine.
If you want to help the people of Ukraine, consider donating to The Ukrainian Red Cross, which is providing vital aid on the ground; Doctors Without Borders, a group working with local volunteers and healthcare professionals; and The Kyiv Independent, a Ukraine-based English-language newspaper which is keeping the world informed of what’s happening on the ground.