Ubisoft Chief Insists That ‘NFTs Are Just The Beginning’ For The Company
In recent weeks, prolific and somewhat infamous developer and publisher Ubisoft has made a massive push into NFT territory. As it takes the industry by storm, Ubisoft effectively becomes the first mainstream developer to embrace the developing market. However, following a bout of doubt and some wavering opinions from Ubisoft employees, CEO Yves Guillemot stepped up to answer questions. By all accounts, it was a confusing session, and Ubisoft’s broad team came away with even more issues.
Allegedly, in a revealing and decisive statement, Guillemot claimed:
“These NFTs are just the beginning.”
What else was revealed at the session?
From MTX to NFT
As part of the grand Q&A session, Yves Guillemot discussed a somewhat bizarre parallel between MTX and NFTs. In recent weeks, following Ubisoft’s announcement of Quartz, an NFT platform, fans have been up in arms regarding the company. When Quartz (and NFTs in Ghost Recon) was revealed, it was to remarkably poor reception. However, Guillemot insists that this is something developers will need to weather, as the same thing happened with MTX.
Potentially, Guillemot doesn’t realise that, for the most part, microtransactions still aren’t universally accepted. They’re still subject to debate as to whether or not they’re a necessary mechanic, and players still begrudge needing to purchase them. We’ve been dealing with microtransactions in video games for the better part of a decade now, and we’re still getting to grips with the, sometimes, ‘pay to win’ aspect of them.
Guillemot went on to essentially gush over the emerging ‘metaverse’, talking at length about play-to-earn games and crypto integrations. Ultimately, despite ongoing backlash from both fans and employees, Guillemot confirmed that the company would stand firm on the decision to introduce NFTs into the Ubisoft world.
Emerging, or Emergency?
NFTs are poised to become a huge part of gaming, particularly where the metaverse is concerned. Although many fans are slow to come around to the idea, NFTs can give inherent value to their in-game items. With NFT technology, one-time, valueless purchases will be eradicated, with skins, cosmetics, and unlocks becoming NFTs. At this point, fans can trade NFTs on the blockchain, using the proof-of-ownership concept to give value to their items.
However, despite this financial potential, gamers are reluctant to get on board with the market in general. While cryptocurrency seems to be booming among younger gamers, NFTs are yet to catch on at the same level. For example, in recent weeks, it was revealed that in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2, an open-world post-apocalyptic game launching in 2022, NFTs would exist. Following mass outcry regarding the decision, the developer, GSC Game World, decided to scrap the integration of NFTs.
Bizarrely, it was originally heavily defended by the developer, who claimed that:
“Just like all other devs, we need two main resources: time and money. All the funds that we earn during the development process (including the potential income from NFT) will be spent on improving the long-awaited game to make it even better.”
It wasn’t the most tactful response, and it garnered mass unease from the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. community. In the short term, it seems that there is still a lot of work to be done regarding NFT integration into mainstream games.