Russian version of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is subdued

Daniel Vasilchuk

Activision, an international video game developer and publisher, released the game “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2” on Nov. 10.

And while the American version of the game contains a controversial mission where the player gets to slaughter innocent civilians in a Moscow airport, the Russian version does not.

Soon after the game’s release, Activision added a patch – a modification – to the Russian version that deletes the mission from the storyline.

But this censorship is not an effective way of covering its tracks, particularly because this was done to a PC version of the game.

Why? Because there are ways of getting around the patch that would let Russian gamers have it their way anyways.

The technologically-savvy gamers could just reinstall the game and run it without an Internet connection to prevent the game from automatically being patched.

Others will simply turn to websites that illegally offer the uncensored version for free.

According to, the patching was necessary because Russia does not have a formal ratings entity.

The company also sought the advice of “a local counsel” before patching the game. What kind of counsel remains unknown.

Could it be that Activision thought Russian gamers would find it too much to have to slaughter Russian civilians, apart from the rest of the Russian enemies?

Being Russian myself, and having played through the mission, I did not find it offensive in any way.

It is just a video game. Those Russian civilians were just computer-generated figures that were formed by pixels on my computer screen.

Perhaps Activision thought that Russians would take it literally; That they would think that there is, in fact, a Russian horror figure named Makarov?

Russian gamers are just like gamers in America. Everybody should know that what happens in a video game does not necessarily represent real life.

It is all part of the fun that makes video games what they are.

The explosions that we see and inflict in “Modern Warfare 2” do not make us homicidal maniacs.

It was a misstep on Activision’s part to patch the Russian version of MW2. Since Activision patched the Russian version, it should have patched all the other versions.

It is unfair that while the rest of the gamers around world get to slaughter computer-generated civilians, the gamers in Russia are excluded.

Activision should have given Russians and Americans two separate versions, right from the release date.

Releasing a game, then going back and removing a key objective in the storyline, is a bad choice.

Could Activision be afraid of a Russian reprisal? I doubt any Russian gamer would sue Activision.

It is a great game, Activision. I had fun playing it. But I am sure your actions will cost you loyal customers in Russia.

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