Lost Ark developer Smilegate officially confirmed that Lost Ark is coming to Russia after the company signed a contract with Mail.Ru for a local Russian server of the new MMO. This could also mean that Europe and NA versions are next.
After the release of Lost Ark, which is a free-to-play MMO exclusive to South Korea, players from Europe and North America started to use various methods just to see what Lost Ark is really about and why is it so popular in Korea.
Basically, to play the game from Europe or North America you would need a Korean phone and social security number which are of course unavailable to people who live outside of Korea. That's why some websites started to create accounts with their Korean info and sell them to players abroad.
You can already see just how little protection and control over your account you actually have when doing it this way but despite that, many people are actually playing the game from NA and Europe using this method, including some popular YouTubers like Arekkz Gaming.
All of this could come to an end pretty soon as the developer Smilegate announced that Lost Ark is coming to Russia and that a contract for local distribution Lost Ark servers has been signed with Mail.Ru.
This is an exciting announcement for some and it's possible that publishers for North America and Europe could join in soon. Unfortunately, Smilegate did not officially confirm anything, but the company has different branches for publishing their games in Europe, South and North America and Brazil.
It's a real possibility that one of these companies - Smilegate West or Z8GAmes will distribute Lost Ark in western countries. It also makes perfect sense to make the game available to as many players as possible, given that the developer decided to monetise their game through in-game microtransactions.
Those who played the game claim that Lost Ark is not pay-to-win and you can only speed up leveling with a cash injection, but high-end weapons and gear are not for direct purchase.
Lost Ark is an MMO-ARPG similar to Diablo or Path of Exile and one of the biggest differences from these games are elaborate visuals and a unique take on boss fights. The game is currently in open beta and will get a full release in early 2019.