Riding On Recent NFT boom, Game Publisher Ubisoft Pushes For NFT Adoption

Ubisoft entered the NFT market after Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint was announced as the first game to provide NFTs in a beta trial in select countries.

Ubisoft Quartz is an NFT venture which allows players to purchase artificially scarce digital products using bitcoin. It was launched in the beginning of this month. The AAA industry’s first real venture into NFTs was announced with this announcement.

How successful has Ubisoft’s entrance into the blockchain been in just over a month after its announcement?

Ubisoft’s NFTs Fail At Launch

The publisher’s initial blockchain-based virtual items, unique numbered items for Ghost Recon Breakpoint players, aren’t exactly in high demand.

Ubisoft Digits are in-game virtual items with distinct serial numbers that are part of Ubisoft’s Quartz “experience.” Rather than slightly different photos of poorly drawn monkeys, Digits are in-game cosmetic objects with unique serial numbers. Players must reach XP Level 5 to receive a rifle skin, a pair 100-hours of play and a mask which takes 600 hours to complete. These items will be available as freebies to those who have met the specified account or playtime requirements.

However, it doesn’t look like the virtual items sold much at launch.

Eurogamer reports that Quartz sold only 15 NFTs for a Ghost Recon Breakpoint skin gun as of yesterday. Yesterday’s sales show that it has sold 2 more tactical M4A1 weapons, and 1 Wolf Enhance Pants #76. This makes a total 18 tactical M4A1 weapons. Based on the prices, that amounts to approximately $1,755.30 of revenue. Ubisoft seems to have made around 3,000 NFTs. Breakpoint doesn’t have the most appealing visual aesthetic — nor is it the largest Ubisoft IP — making it a strange pick to begin off Ubisoft’s NFT efforts, as many have pointed out.

Ubisoft has decided to give away the vast majority of their NFTs initially, which will reduce the purchase volume. Nonetheless, it appears that the publisher’s experiment with NFTs hasn’t gone as planned.

Quartz’s design means that Ubisoft players are the only ones who can buy an NFT. This makes it less attractive to people looking for quick money. Getting non-players to put in hundreds of hours in order to “own” a helmet that they can only resale to other players who have put in hundreds of hours is a futile endeavor.

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Ubisoft Doubles Down

Ubisoft appears determined to promote NFT adoption, despite failing initial offerings.

Didier Genevois, Ubisoft’s blockchain director, told Decrypt that the publisher will go through with its NFT plans while adhering to its “principles,” as he puts it:

“This experiment is designed to see how our gamers respond to and accept the value proposition of decentralization. We recognize that this is a significant adjustment that will take time, but we will stick to our three principles.”

“Use the technology responsibly and build a safe environment” for players to explore the new frontier of NFTs, “only leverage energy-efficient proof-of-stake blockchains,” and “focus on the meaningful value propositions for players that benefit their gaming experience,” are the three principles he’s referring to. At this time, it’s unclear how any of these three ideas are being implemented.

It’s apparent that AAA game publishers may have a hard time jumping on the NFT train as it seems the gaming world is not ready for play-to-earn games. Ubisoft may have failed to launch the game due to its strategy and virtual goods. As more players become involved in the game, we will know.

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