Putin has given Russian developers until June to create a PlayStation and Xbox rival

Putin has given Russian developers until June to create a PlayStation and Xbox rival

Russian president Vladamir Putin has reportedly tasked tech companies with creating a console to rival the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X/S.

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According to Russian newspaper Kommersant (via ReadWrite), the Kremlin has ordered Russian developers to “consider the issue of organising the production of stationary and portable game consoles.”

It’s reported that tech group VK (who are behind the popular Russian social media platform of the same name) will be heading up the project, while production will be handled by the GS Group, who are currently the single largest Russian developer of TV set-top boxes. They have a deadline of June 15 2024 to draw up plans for both handheld and home consoles.

The orders also talk about developers working on the “creation of an operating system and a cloud system for delivering games and programs to users,” a la Steam.

However, analysts have said that “there is no competence to produce their own PlayStation and Xbox consoles, and creating such a system from scratch will take up to ten years.”

Xbox wireless controller. Credit: Microsoft Xbox

The move comes after a number of game developers and studios pulled out of Russia following their invasion of Ukraine. The Russian video gaming industry might not be a major international force but the country does have the largest player base in Europe.

In 2022, the Russian government discussed measures to support their homegrown video game industry and looked at establishing a state-controlled developer and publisher. The planned project needed an apparent £39.5 billion investment. There was also talk of Russia creating their own game engine, similar to Unity or Unreal Engine following the “tech exodus”.

The Ministry Of Digital Development confirmed to Kommersant that they were “discussing with relevant market players the issue of the need for state support in terms of creating their own game engine and its relevant forms.” However, two years on and nothing has been publicly announced.

In other news, Roblox studio boss Stefano Corazza has hit back at claims the gaming platform “exploits” young developers.

The post Putin has given Russian developers until June to create a PlayStation and Xbox rival appeared first on NME.

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