Final Fantasy Maker Square Enix confirms focus on Blockchain games

Although the crypto markets are still down and many video game enthusiasts are vocal Demonstrate the possibility of using NFTs in gamingThe major game publisher continues to focus on it Web 3 Games: Square Enix, creator of major franchises like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest.

The Japanese company has been gradually increasing its investment and presence in the Web3 space in recent years, and in President Yosuke Matsuda Annual New Year’s speech for 2023He explained that Square Enix is ​​”focusing more” on blockchain-powered games amid its new business development efforts.

Matsuda writes that Square Enix is ​​developing “several blockchain games” based on the original IP, rather than its existing franchises, and the company plans to announce additional games this year. The company is also still studying investment opportunities around the blockchain. “[We] Whether we find them in Japan or abroad, we will continue to acquire stakes in promising companies.

Matsuda’s letter highlights the growing use of the term Web3, which he writes has become “a well-established buzzword among business people.” But it also points to the market challenges that have arisen in 2022, including FTX cryptocurrency exchange collapse In November and subsequent industrial infection.

Matsuda explained that “Blockchain has been a topic of excitement and concern, but nevertheless in the rearview mirror, we hope that blockchain games will move into a new stage of growth in 2023.”

There has been a growing interest in blockchain technology A mainstay at Matsuda’s annual speech Over the past few years, Square Enix has been ramping up its moves in the space all the way.

In November, Square Enix announced its first original game Ethereum NFT, is called equivalence. Launching this spring, it’s a “collectible digital art experience” with narrative elements. company tweeted recently The game is about choosing monopoly or [share]information with other players.

Square Enix also recently announced that it will be a strategic advisor to Transit timeA digital card game based on it ribbedAnd the I invested in a Bitcoin gaming startup Zubaidi. It is also Invested in The Sandbox metaverse in 2020And last year revealed plans for Revive her dormant Dungeon Siege possessions As an in-game experience in The Sandbox.

Also last year, Square Enix announced plans for Release of Final Fantasy NFTs via Enjin Polka dotEfinity based platform. NFTs are based on the popular game Final Fantasy VII, and are tied to physical trading cards and games that will be released this year.

Last May, Square Enix She sold three of her interior studios along with major franchises – including Tomb Raider and Deus Ex – for Embracer Group for $300 million. The publisher said the sale will benefit its growing blockchain gaming venture.

Square Enix is ​​one of the few traditional game publishers committed to expanding the blockchain space. It is owned by Ubisoft, maker of Assassin’s Creed and Just Dance Invested in and involved with it A number of crypto game studios, and Released the first NFT items in the game for a major franchise game in late 2021 with Ghost Recon: Breakpoint.

Meanwhile, Take-Two Interactive — the publisher behind Rockstar Games and 2K Games, the makers of Grand Theft Auto and NBA 2K respectively — Paid in the NFT space Through Casual game studio, Zynga. Take two It also invested in Horizon Game Studios Along with Ubisoft, but Rockstar Games has since Ban the use of NFTs On the Grand Theft Auto V servers.

Web3 proponents believe that NFTs — or tokens that represent ownership of unique items — can fuel decentralized player-owned gaming economies and benefit players through the ability to sell items and potentially use them in multiple games.

But many players have retracted Against the rise of Web3 gaming and NFT collectibles, pointing to fraud in the crypto industry, simplified gaming of many early Web3 gaming examples, and speculative demand that drove up the prices of some assets.

In his post, Matsuda highlighted the earlier speculative craze surrounding NFTs but wrote that he believes the focus on monetization will give way to an increased view of the potential functional benefits of NFTs for players.

“In the wake of the aforementioned upheavals in the cryptocurrency industry, there is now a tendency to view blockchain technology as simply a means to an end, and discuss what needs to happen to get to the end of offering new experiences and excitement to customers,” he wrote. “I see this as a very beneficial development for the future growth of the industry.”

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