Game developer Ubisoft has launched Quartz, a digital platform for players to access and purchase non-fungible tokens (NFTs) used in Ubisoft’s games. These NFTs, called Digits, are the first digital assets launched by the gaming company within its HD games. The Beta NFT launch is for PC players of Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint game.
While it seems that digital assets have only entered the gaming world in the last few months, for years, Ubisoft has played a crucial role. It invested and helped startups in the blockchain sector develop and launch their products through the Ubisoft Entrepreneurs Lab program. One example is fantasy football platform Sorare, with whom it partnered to launch a Belgian fantasy football game. It also previously tried NFTs for its Rabbid collectible game.
Despite its involvement with the sector’s development, Ubisoft has remained in the background of NFT gaming for the past five years. It’s been observing how the market developed, what kind of products were welcomed by consumers, and what opportunities were still to be explored.
Digits highlights an area of the NFT gaming sector that has a lot of potential but hasn’t been adopted by many gaming companies, which is to launch digital assets that are potentially interoperable between the company’s games. That’s something Ubisoft’s Blockchain Product Director Baptiste Chardo explicitly mentioned.
In Ubisoft’sinitiative, Digits are like accessories that players can purchase to equip their characters in games. Ubisoft emphasized that the ownership of the Digits won’t affect the quality of game play. Instead, they enable personalization of players’ characters. Players can also sell their Digits at any time.
Gamers versus the crypto crowd
However, Ubisoft is going out of its way to ensure that the NFT values don’t get inflated through speculation. To qualify to buy an NFT, the player must reach XP Level 5 in the game and be 18 or over. Nonetheless, many gamers have expressed dissatisfaction by using the dislike button on the Youtube launch video. Since November, Youtube no longer displays the number of dislikes, but they can be viewed with a plugin.
One Tweet even suggested gamers might target those that have bought NFTs.
The Quartz platform is still not available worldwide, but Ubisoft plans to expand to more regions.
For the blockchain technology aspect, Quartz is using the Tezos blockchain, which uses a proof-of-stake technology that is significantly more energy efficient than proof-of-work protocols. Both Tezos and Ubisoft are French and Ubisoft joined the platform as a corporate baker in April.
Meanwhile, one of the most prominent players in the play-to-earn gaming space is Animoca, which is also backed by Ubisoft. The company has raised $93 million for one of its most popular play-to-earn games, The Sandbox, and launched a play-to-earn game titled Revv Racing.