It’s no surprise that NFTs are gaining recognition worldwide due to their unique elements. A non-fungible token (NFT) is a unique and non-interchangeable unit of facts saved on a blockchain, a type of virtual ledger. NFTs use a digital ledger to offer public certificates of authenticity or evidence of ownership. However, they do not limit the sharing or copying of the underlying virtual documents.
This lack of interchangeability is the difference between an NFT and a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, which is one reason why artists prefer NFTs. Many large developers like Konami, Ubisoft, and Riot Games are eyeing an opportunity to participate in the NFT trend. Gaining significant recognition in recent years, NFTs have proved how rapidly cryptocurrency can affect the world around it.
Mike Shinoda’s POV On NFTs In Video Games
Mike Shinoda, the lead vocalist of Linkin Park, recently gave his stance on NFTs regarding gaming. While replying to a tweet, he talked about how different games could share the same skins that a user may own. Though, developers and gamers may face severe complications with such a system. Games would have to adapt and even re-program elements to bring forth this possibility.
“NFTs don’t have to be jpgs…” says Mike Shinoda from Linkin Park.
Ah! So here’s something people aren’t explaining: NFTs don’t have to be jpgs.
Imagine taking your favorite skin from Valorant, and using it Fortnite. And not paying extra, because you own it. Then using it in CoD, Minecraft, even Twitter, IG.
So many possibilities, no? https://t.co/cJTA6E0z69
— Mike Shinoda (@mikeshinoda) January 8, 2022
Gamers were quick to criticize him for this tweet, as the user SJRB on Neogaf pointed out:
“This has everything: a gross misunderstanding of videogame development in an artistical, technical and legal way, a failure to understand NFTs, and a failure to present actual real-life usability of NFTs while still championing NFTs as the next big thing.”
While few also supported this perspective, saying there could be a global marketplace where one could own skins and choose to equip them in games they play.
A few complications that remain included are: how would skins be transferred between games of entirely different nature, like Valorant and Minecraft are on different spectrums in genres. How would skins be moderated, and game developers tackle such a scenario. Another significant issue is how will it profit developers while at the same time being beneficial to players. Many legal issues come with such a system.
Shinoda later tweeted out that he thinks that the developers need to “give, and not take.” While it is a controversial take, it would definitely be interesting to see where this leads to.
I think the bottom line is, I urge creators out there: pay attention to the comments in these threads. If you’re going to work with NFTs, you have to give, not take. You are working against a headwind. It will take a lot of work to impress them with something great.
— Mike Shinoda (@mikeshinoda) January 10, 2022
NFTs Potential Roles In Gaming Industry
NFTs could play a significant role in the game industry in the future. They can represent in-game assets, such as virtual plots of land, which are maintained by the player instead of the game developer. However, NFTs have received little attention from gamers themselves in general, and most of the stance has been against NFTs.
In October 2021, developer Valve banned applications for NFTs to exchange value or game artifacts from their Steam platform. Whereas, in December 2021, Ubisoft revealed Ubisoft Quartz:
“An NFT step which allows people to buy virtually scarce digital items using cryptocurrency.”
The announcement has raised significant criticism, with an almost 95 percent dislike ratio over the YouTube announcement video. Ubisoft has unlisted the video since then. Some Ubisoft developers have also raised their concern over the announcement.
As it stands, gamers are not ready for NFTs. Most are against it due to the ecological impact, high energy usage it brings, and countless other reasons. There is no certainty that NFTs will benefit gamers; maybe in 5-10 years, we will see an emerging market for them in the gaming industry. So I suppose, only time could answer how well NFTs fit in the gaming market and the world in general amidst the issues that come with it.