Why Are Some Gamers Against NFTs? Comments Off on Why Are Some Gamers Against NFTs? 279

From Gen Z Corner, The Block Talk’s interns tackle topics from the perspective of young consumers.

On December 15 of last year, Game World, the developers for the widely- anticipated S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 videogame, announced that the game would be entering the metaverse. The implementation, they said in a tweet which has since been deleted, would not impact gameplay and would be optional for players. One day later, due to massive backlash and pre-order cancellation threats, Game World sent another tweet announcing that they reversed their stance on these changes. 

And Game World isn’t the only gaming brand that had second thoughts about introducing NFTs. Just this year, Forbes reported that game publishing giant EA had backtracked on their major NFT projects. Another major publisher, Ubisoft, similarly experienced pushback from the gaming community after pursuing their own NFTs which are called digits. Digits are digital assets that can be used in Ubisoft’s games. They’re stored in Ubisoft Quartz, which is effectively a digital wallet. These NFTs can then be bought and sold on marketplaces using Tezos cryptocurrency on the XTZ blockchain. Ubisoft Quartz’s announcement video was so controversial for gamers that it initially garnered a 96% dislike on YouTube. 

Why Are Some Gamers Anti-NFT? 

One reason gamers are so adamantly against NFTs is because they see them as another way publishers can get away with giving them an ‘incomplete’ game. Many gamers have grown weary of microtransactions in games, which are seen as a way for developers to nickel-and-dime the consumer. Microtransactions are encouraged for downloadable content (DLCs for short), that include the sale of in-game content, expansions, character skins, digital art, and more. In other words, NFTs if they are minted on a blockchain.  

Another concern is that NFTs will utilize lootbox mechanics. A lootbox is a container with undetermined contents from a pool of obtainable items. Like in a slot machine, getting your desired outcome is not guaranteed, but the prospect is addictive. Lootboxes have been widely-debated for their link to gambling addiction, and the implementation of lootboxes has been banned in some countries, including the Netherlands. 

However, even though some gamers are opposed to the notion of in-game NFTs, the community has historically embraced the general concept. Steam, the biggest digital video game distribution platform has a community market where NFT-like digital assets for games are bought, sold and traded regularly, much like any NFT marketplace today. The main difference being that Steam is centralized, and it does not permit cryptocurrency purchases or use a blockchain of any kind. 

Gamers, knowingly or not, have been using digital assets for close to a decade, though many are still feverishly against NFTs. There’s likely a path forward for NFTs in the context of games, but gamers and developers have a way to go to ensure mutual value. Surely, with the right set up or incentive, gamers, NFTs and the blockchain technology that enables them will be accepted as the norm and enjoyed within games. 

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Jacob Flores is an intern at The Block Talk and a writer for Gen Z Corner, a platform for exploring Web3 implications through the eyes of Gen Z.

$FLIX Wants to Democratize the Film Industry Comments Off on $FLIX Wants to Democratize the Film Industry 332

The entertainment space has experienced incredible disruption over the last 15 years. The rise of social media, and subsequently the social media influencer, allowed individuals and brands to amass their own audiences. This gave advertisers new channel opportunities and created a need for high quality video content in a new medium.

Then, Netflix introduced streaming in 2007, which meant more nontraditional avenues for content and audience development.

Ultimately, the competition for audiences spurred on a streaming war that recently culminated in content saturation that even Netflix is grappling to overcome. 

All of this has had the impact of increasing the demand for well-produced content and creating new avenues for creators to be seen. The result is a new playing field in the entertainment ecosystem, with room for new entrants and a rapid increase in content produced by and for minority and niche populations.

Now, a new platform called $FLIX wants to take the democratization of content to a new level by utilizing the blockchain.

Created by Ben Rosenblatt and Micho Rutare, $FLIX is a token designed to finance films. A percentage of every token purchased aggregates in a so-called “film wallet” in order to finance a production. 

They believe successful projects will spark interest in the token, which will in turn increase the volume of token sales to perpetually fill the film wallet. As the token garners traction, the founders say they will buy back tokens to “burn” them, creating additional scarcity for token holders. 

Rather than an ICO or other type of closed pre-sale, the token was a fair launch, meaning that everyone had the same access to the initial sale.

“It was very important to us that this be a community-owned token, and that the community could get in on the ground floor,” says Rutare.

The token had a successful launch, garnering a market cap of nearly $3 million at its peak. 

“Oftentimes, new tokens that launch fairly suffer from bots who buy a ton of the supply which ultimately deters other buyers from entering,” Rosenblatt said. “We managed to avoid this.”

According to Rosenblatt, $150,000 of the sale is already in the film development wallet, which is enough to execute on the platform’s two primary goals: making content and building a community. Since launch, they’ve made some strides toward realizing those goals.

“We have engaged a Sundance Institute creative executive to spearhead script development, and we are also talking to major Hollywood screenwriters about producing their scripts,”explained Rutare.

In the near-term, they plan to open a discord server to engage their community of token holders.

According to Rutare, the team is composed of traditional, but anonymous, crypto personalities. They include three developers across two continents, five moderators around the globe, and the three founders of the project, Rutare, Rosenblatt and 0xSilverbone. 

In addition to the development team, the group will engage entertainment-industry experts that will sign on to support the funded projects.

“Now that the initial hype from launch has died down, [the platform] will rely on execution from here on out to build on that hype,” says Rosenblatt. “With our collective experience, we believe we are more than up to the task.”

Stakester Brings New Experiences and Royalties to Gamers with NFTs Comments Off on Stakester Brings New Experiences and Royalties to Gamers with NFTs 300

A cheat code NFT allows owners to accrue money, prizes and royalties in the context of popular games.

On Tuesday, Stakester announced its intention to launch a VIP pass in the form of NFTs that it says will enhance the experience for users of its popular gaming app. 

The app, which pairs gamers with real-life opponents, allows players to stake real cash and prizes on their competitive skills in popular games like FIFA 21 and Call of Duty: Warzone. It’s seen significant growth since its launch in 2020, and touts 100,000 members across 31 countries. 

With the forthcoming NFT drop, users will now unlock the potential for larger prizes, access to VIP arenas, and 50% of royalties on the secondary market.

“The NFTs embody Stakester’s vision of delivering electrifying gaming experiences through the thrill of competition,” says Tom Fairey, Founder and CEO of Stakester. “NFT holders will help us shape new, undreamt-of entertainment experiences as gaming becomes ever more powerful and immersive.”

Two levels of NFTs will be offered. At .1 and .25 ETH, respectively, the barrier to entry is high, but Stakester is hoping gamers will see the value of layered experiences and unlocking additional incentives with real-world value. 

“The idea of earning rewards, just like a normal reward scheme but built around NFTs, is totally fit for the future,” says Mike White, CEO and Strategist of immersive entertainment marketing agency, Lively.  “The whole idea of royalties is truly exciting.” 

Stakester’s 50% royalty incentive, Fairey believes, will create stakeholders out of the players on his platform.

 “As well as the increase in gaming utility, the NFT drops provide Stakester users with a chance to invest in the future of the company and, for VIP Legendary holders, there’s also an opportunity to benefit from a royalty share from certain competitions and to make a passive income from NFTs, regardless of whether they go up in value or not,” he says. “Stakester is one of the only platforms to offer this kind of bonus.”

White points out that Gala Games is doing something similar with Nodes which allow gamers to receive rewards like NFTs when they contribute meaningfully to the Gala Network.

He predicts that legacy gaming companies will be adopting similar NFT models, but the winners in the NFT gaming race are hard to predict, particularly since there’s so much attention around NFTs that it’s hard to differentiate between hype and long-term value. 

“I’m sure it will be an immediate success,” he says. “Will it be a long-term thing? We can only wait and see.”

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