Ubisoft partners with crypto startup Aleph.im for NFT initiative despite fan backlash

Some game companies just never listen to gamers, do they?

Image via Ubisoft

Ubisoft is doubling down on its NFT initiative and forming a partnership with crypto startup Aleph.im in integrating NFTs into its AAA games despite backlash from fans over its Ubisoft Quartz platform.

According to a report from Decrypt, Ubisoft teamed up with Aleph.im to provide decentralized storage for its NFTs, or “Digits” as they’re called in Quartz, which launched in Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint two weeks ago to the dismay of players. Since its launch, they have lobbed their complaints towards Ubisoft for chasing a trend they believe poses irreparable harm to the environment, even though the company employs Tezos, a proof-of-stake blockchain platform considered to be an energy-efficient alternative to Ethereum, the world’s leading NFT platform.

Didier Genvois, Ubisoft’s blockchain technical director, addressed the feedback the company received from fans about its NFT rollout earlier in the month during a presentation announcing the new partnership. While Ubisoft praised NFTs and blockchain gaming as revolutionary ideas, he toned down its enthusiasm and talked about players’ sentiments and concerns about the relatively new technology, saying it’s something that needs to be taken into consideration in everything that they do.

“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,” Genvois said. Those three principles are to “use the tech responsibly,” “build a safe environment” for players to explore NFTs that “only leverage energy-efficient proof-of-stake blockchains,” and “focus on meaningful value propositions for players that benefit their gaming experience.”

That being said, Aleph.im will serve to securely store the NFT metadata, which includes the names of previous and current owners of the blockchains, descriptions of blockchain items, and attached video of items used in gameplay, in its storage system of over 70 nodes. As controversial as NFTs still are, they’ll be making it easier for players to check the history of item metadata in a trustworthy manner.