Launched on December 9, Quartz is Ubisoft’s first platform for purchasing non-fungible tokens for use in a video game.
On Tuesday, December 7, Ubisoft announced the launch of Quartz in a press release. This new initiative from the video game giant will allow players to acquire NFTs (non-fungible tokens) named digits: items they can use in Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, released in 2019. These items will not be more powerful than those already available in the game, and will be resellable. Each of them will have its own serial number visible to other players, and will keep track of its owner for years to come, thanks to a certificate of ownership based on blockchain technology. Quartz was launched this December 9th on PC. The platform is currently available in nine countries, including France. Quartz was launched on December 9th on PC, and the platform is currently available in nine countries, including France.
For the moment, it is three objects for Ghost Recon Breakpoint which are available on Quartz. A rifle available for free to players of at least level 5, and two other pieces of equipment reserved for more invested players (a pair of pants available from 100 hours of play and a helmet available from… 600 hours). In this way, Ubisoft wishes to avoid speculation around these NFTs, to reserve them above all for fans of the franchise.
A more ecological blockchain
To implement this initiative, Ubisoft chose to use the Tezos blockchain instead ofEthereum. A choice that is not insignificant, and which is explained by the fact that Tezos would be more ecological than Ethereum, because it is more energy efficient, than Ethereum, because it uses proof of stake for transactions. Proof of stake is a form of virtual mining, which does not require buying computers and running them to produce blocks as is necessary for the mining we know. According to Ubisoft, the energy consumption of Quartz would be “equal to that of a traditional database” . Moreover, the publisher has announced that it will communicate publicly on the environmental impact of this project.
A poorly received project
But it’s an announcement that has made many players cringe. Even with the disappearance of the dislike button on YouTube, which would have allowed to hide this ambient discontent, the media Kotaku and Video Games Chronicle claim that the video presenting the project would have received 95% of negative interactions! Moreover, the video, still available on YouTube, is collecting a large number of negative comments.
According to most critics, this initiative by Ubisoft would give players the opportunity to monetize their play time, by allowing them to resell the digits obtained. Thus, the primary fear of gamers is that of witnessing the transformation of the video game world into a market where users would not play for entertainment, but to earn money by reselling the items earned through their play time.
In any case, the French company is not the only big name in video games to take a close interest in the world of NFT. Today, Electronic Arts would think about integrating them into its soccer game Fifa, following the example of Square Enix.