When Lost Ark launched in the west earlier this year, it didn’t actually launch in all of the west, as European servers formally excluded Belgian and Dutch players over “local laws and regulations regarding random in-game items” – i.e., those countries have regulations on the game’s gamblebox monetization that Amazon couldn’t or didn’t want to tangle with. Players in Belgium and the Netherlands were therefore left to fend for themselves with VPNs if they were intent on playing.
Well, no longer, at least for the Dutch, as during its announcement that the Lost Ark team will be at TwitchCon Amsterdam this week, the studio announced that the game will open to Dutch players next week.
“Accompanying our presence at TwitchCon Amsterdam, we’re also ecstatic to announce that Lost Ark will be available to players in the Netherlands on Steam starting on July 14. We look forward to welcoming more heroes into Arkesia to start their journey!”
The current theory is that the pullout of Yoz’s Jar helped facilitate the decision for Amazon in regard to the Netherlands, but Belgium is unfortunately still screwed. “We would be open to making it happen in the future if possible, but right now we are only able to expand support for the Netherlands as there are still some different laws and rulings in place versus Belgium (I don’t know the exact nuances of this, but we have lawyers that do),” a Lost Ark CM said on the forums.
Of course, as gamers on Reddit point out, Dutch players who wanted to play are unlikely to abandon their existing accounts to do so legally.