Cryptocurrency Enthusiasts Meet Their Match: Angry Gamers

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So far, 10,000 digital wallets, tools that allow people to store their crypto assets, have been connected to the Quartz platform, although Ubisoft minted only 3,000 NFTs in its first batch, Pouard said. That suggested an appetite for more NFTs in the future, he said.

Ubisoft eventually plans to take a cut of NFT futures sales, Pouard added. “We are moving from a game-centric business model to an ecosystem-centric business model where every player can be a stakeholder,” he said.

Zynga, which is scheduled to be acquired by Take-Two, hired Mr. Wolf, a gaming industry veteran, to lead a crypto effort in November. The goal was to create new games on the blockchain, making it easier for players to acquire, own and sell NFTs, Wolf said. He provided few details about how the effort would work, including whether NFTs could be transferred between Zynga games.

“We’re still developing all of that,” he said.

Other gaming companies have gotten into NFTs, echoing how cryptocurrencies can create new wealth for users. This month, Yosuke Matsuda, president of Square Enix, wrote in an open letter that creating blockchain games would allow players to earn money. That would become “an important strategic issue” for the company, he said.

But as the number of NFT announcements from game studios piled up, gamers were getting more and more annoyed. After users revolted against Sega Sammy’s crypto plans, one of its executives told a management meeting last month, “If it’s perceived as just a way to make money, I’d like to make a decision not to continue.” . (The effort continues.)

Other gaming companies have spoken out against cryptocurrencies. Phil Spencer, head of Xbox at Microsoft, told Axios in November that some games focused on making money through NFTs seemed “exploitative” and would avoid putting them on the Xbox store. Microsoft declined to comment.

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