Ubisoft announced that it is officially getting into the NFT business.
NFT (non-fungible tokens), are unique digital goods that can be bought or sold with ownership tracked on the blockchain. Its becoming an increasingly popular way to attempt to add value to digital goods.
It is also extremely controversial for a number of reasons including heavy damage to the environment and the numerous scams that have become associated with the technology.
In any case, Ubisoft announced Ubisoft Quartz; a platform which allows people to buy these digital items using cryptocurrency.
This might be the first time that a AAA games company has so blatantly ventured into the NFT trade.
According to Ubisoft, you are able buy NFT’s called Digits. You are able to buy a token for in-game items like vehicles, weapons, and equipment.
These Digits will make their debut in Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, although it will only be available on the PC version as of yet.
According to the statement released by Ubisoft, the Digits are playable cosmetic items that “provide players the ability to personalize their experience and complete their missions with style.”
“Each Digit is a unique collectible that features its own serial number for others to see in-game,” and “also keeping track of its current and previous owners for years to come, making players an integral part of the game’s history.” Ubisoft said in a statement announcing Quartz,
“With Digits, items are no longer bound to a player’s game inventory since they can be put on sale for other eligible players to acquire outside of the Ubisoft ecosystem,” the company said.
The Digits will stored on the Tezos blockchain, which is a “proof of stake” blockchain, as opposed to the more energy-intensive “proof of work” blockchains of Ethereum or Bitcoin.
“A single transaction on Tezos uses roughly the same amount of energy as streaming 30 seconds of video.” claimed Ubisoft.
The Digits can be claimed through the platform when beta launch begins on 9 December 2021 at 1 p.m. EST in the United States and Canada.
Quartz will also be available at the same hour, local time, in Brazil, Spain, France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, and Australia.
Ubisoft said announced that free Digits drops will occur on 9, 12, and 15 December “to reward the early adopters among players.”
Players will be able to claim these on Ubisoft Connect for Windows, in which you have reached level 5, are at least 18 years old, and live in the US, Canada, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Australia or Brazil.
They also launched Ubisoft Quartz website has more on eligibility and registration. Other drops are planned for early 2022, Ubisoft said.
The announcement also mentioned that Quartz culminates the company’s “four-year exploration of blockchain technology through in-house research and development and close collaboration with renowned specialists within the startup ecosystem.”
EA was has also expressed interest in blockchain and NFTs in its latest earnings report, and Epic says it’s “open” to blockchain games on the Epic Games Store.
But not all gaming companies are on board; Valve has banned blockchain games and NFTs from Steam, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has expressed concerns about NFTs being exploitative. And despite allowing blockchain games on the Epic Games Store, Epic CEO Tim Sweeney said that Epic isn’t using crypto in its own games, meaning you probably shouldn’t expect to see NFT Fortnite skins anytime soon.
It is also worth noting that Ubisoft has been involved in a sexual abuse scandal where it is said to have enabled and protected abusers. You can read more about it here and here.