Last week, Ubisoft made a huge blunder. It announced that a new platform called Ubisoft Quartz, which is focused on NFTs in its games. For anyone who doesn’t understand, NFTs are effectively pieces of digital art that you can pay to own via a serial number. Others can copy it, but you’re the sole owner, and that’s marked in a digital logbook somewhere. You can then sell that digital art to someone for more money when it becomes more valuable. I don’t understand why we need a digital version of this when we can print out art, but there we go.
Ubisoft Quartz goes further. In the PC version of Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, there are now cosmetics for you to buy that are NFTs. You own the originals and can sell them to anyone else. However, you can also use them in the game on your character and enjoy them each time you load up the game. I don’t see the point in this, and no other Ubisoft fan does either. The announcement video for this was taken down very quickly after amassing 22,000 dislikes, which sort of speaks for itself.
Let me be clear. NFTs have no place in games. We buy games because they’re accessible. Sure, some online titles have premium skins you can pay for, but that’s a way for developers to support themselves without giving players an unfair advantage. It’s a tactical way to earn some extra cash that we’re all fine with because it doesn’t affect the base gameplay. While the NFTs in Ubisoft Quartz would also be purely cosmetic, they create an issue that we’ve never had to worry about before.
If you own an NFT, it’s constantly draining energy. It’s using fossil fuels to power your ownership, and that’s bad. Even when you’re done with the game and don’t play it, it’s killing the planet. That’s not something that we need to worry about these days. NFTs exist for the types of people who desire them, that’s fine, but we don’t need them in games. If developers start to implement skins that are owned as NFTs and can be sold as such, it will kill the planet faster, and creat an economy within all games that is almost certainly going to be detrimental to the game’s reputation.