I’ve banged on about Ubisoft Quartz, the NFT initiative that Ubisoft is trying to bring to games, recently, and I’m going to stop after this. I have one final point to make, and it’s that if we allow Ubisoft to get away with bringing NFTs to games, we’re on a slippery slope downhill to a place that’s going to be incredibly unpleasant. At the time of writing, the promise is that all of these NFTs will be cosmetic, so we’ll have players running around in unique outfits that make them look totally out of place, mainly because no one will look the same. Don’t get me started on how that’s stupid in a game about soldiers in Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, where soldiers need to look the same.
NFTs will very quickly help a black market around the game’s community form. It’s not a terrible thing because it will give all those players who are interested in buying and selling NFTs a place to be. They’ll barter and show off, and ultimately leave the rest of the community alone. But that’s just the beginning. Having written about CS:GO skins in the past, I know how mental people can get about owning unique skins because of their intrinsic value. Some CS:GO skins sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and there’s an entire community built around trying to get more from lot boxes, or even betting with them for the chance to get a new one that’s worth more. It’s transformed the game from a tactical shooter into a gacha machine that you only play to ultimately get new skins so that you can sell them.
That’s what we’re facing if NFTs become mainstream in games. Sure, there will still be those who play games for fun, and that won’t change, but the NFT community will drag the rest of us down. There’s no point in playing a multiplayer game, for example, if everyone is just obsessed with getting more skins. You won’t get the same vibe from players, and the community won’t be as positive as most of them are now. I can’t even begin to think about what would happen if developers focused more on NFTs, because lovely little updates would become a thing of the past.