Earlier this month, Ubisoft revealed its plans for NFTs. Its NFT platform is called Quartz and it will have unique items in AAA games that will run on “energy-efficient technology” that uses “a million times less energy than a bitcoin transaction.” Their NFTs, called “Digits” will be in-game cosmetic items with a unique code visibly stamped on. The serial-coded cosmetic can then be kept or sold, with its previous ownership history logged. The first Ubisoft title to offer NFTs is Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, where Quartz is going to be integrated in beta form on PC. Needless to say, the announcement was met with a lot of criticism as the announcement video on YouTube received more than 95% dislikes. Following the announcement and backlash, Ubisoft talked about continuing on with its NFT plans in a new partnership with Aleph.im that will provide decentralized storage for its Digits.
“We have received a lot of feedback since the announcement, and we hear both the encouragement and the concerns,” Didier Genevois, Ubisoft’s Blockchain Technical Director said in an interview with Decrypt. “We understand where the sentiment towards the technology comes from, and we need to keep taking it into consideration every step of the way. This experiment is meant to understand how the value proposition of decentralization can be received and embraced by our players. We know it is a major change that will take time, but we will stay true to our three principles.”
According to Genevois, Ubisoft’s three principles are to use the tech responsibly to build a safe environment for players to explore how NFTs work, only leverage energy-efficient proof-of-stake blockchains, and to focus on meaningful value propositions for players that benefit their gaming experience.
Talking about the partnership with Aleph.im, Genevois said “our main objective with Ubisoft Quartz is to showcase the true value of decentralization to our players. Aleph.im played a key role in the realization of our vision by allowing us to go further and decentralize the storage of the Digits’ video asset and metadata.” Aleph.im founder Johnathan Schemoul said that he believes “most big publishers will end up proposing in-game NFT support,” citing potential benefits like interoperable assets. “That would be a great breakthrough,” he added, “making the gaming experience even more enjoyable.”