Russia is deep in financial crisis right now as the value of the country’s ruble currency plummets. It’s affecting everything, and video games are no exclusion. Today Valve have decided to limit trading and gifting between the Russian market and other stronger economies to prevent people abusing the system to buy cheaper games.
“Recently Rubles have hit an all-time low which has been a concern of many game developers,” explained a new post picked up by Steam Database.
“What we are doing immediately in response to the Ruble drop is limiting trading and gifting from Russia to prevent people from taking advantage of the situation,” details the post. The change means that any packages traded or gifted from Russia to a country in another territory will not be allowed to be unpacked. A warning will be be issued at the checkout in Russia to explain the restrictions.
The situation will be monitored over coming weeks, and Valve will make rectifications to the new changes if they feel it’s necessary. But for now this ban on trades means that customers from across the world won’t be able to take advantage of any cheap prices in Russia.
The region lock is also being applied in South America, Turkey, and Southeast Asia; regions with their own economic troubles. Users will still be able to trade with other users within their region, but crossing the border will now be impossible.
This is the second change to trading and gifting Steam has implemented recently, having changed the rules last month to prevent users from swindlers.