Ubisoft ends its NFT experiment on Ghost Recon Breakpoint, but promises it’s ‘coming to other games’

Yesterday, Ubisoft announced that Ghost Recon Breakpoint would no longer receive content updates (opens in new tab)the final act of a game that had a confused launch (opens in new tab) and never really found its audience. It also ended up being used as a guinea pig for Ubisoft Quartz: the first attempt by a major publisher to incorporate non-fungible tokens into their games. Breakpoint ‘Digits’, cosmetics with small numbers on them (opens in new tab)released in December 2021.

Breakpoint Digits didn’t create much interest: I kept checking trading sites for a month or two after launch, and there was almost no activity around them. Now Ubisoft has confirmed that the end of Breakpoint updates also means the game will no longer see Digits: a message on the Ubisoft Quartz website thanks players who bought them and says “You own a piece of the game and you’ve left your mark on its history.” “(thank you gi.biz (opens in new tab)).

Or in other words: hard cheese hombre! The language around NFTs always focuses on this idea of ​​ownership and legacy and leaving a mark and… it’s just obvious nonsense. The idea that someone who bought a pair of gloves with a serial number ‘owns’ a piece of Breakpoint is as far-fetched as the idea that anyone will care about the ‘history’ of in-game items.

The Digits always felt like a weak tone anyway, little more than ‘limited edition’ cosmetics. But now they show that NFT’s biggest promise – transferring items between games and ‘owning’ them in perpetuity – for the bunk that it is. Players won’t be able to do anything with their Breakpoint Digits now other than, erm, using them at the Breakpoint (or trying to discharge them on the next sap).

The whole thing really makes me feel bad for Breakpoint players, as Ubisoft certainly knew what the future of this game was in December 2021 (i.e. that it didn’t have one) and used the remaining time just to see what would happen to it. the digits. The game and its players were little more than a three-month experiment that led to news that it is being quietly retired.

To make matters worse, the final Digit of the game was released on March 17, about three weeks ago. Sorry if you bought one of these I think.

This is arguably the most high-profile NFT experiment the industry has ever seen, purely in terms of Ubisoft’s reach and the fact that it actually launched, and a total runtime of three months hardly inspires confidence in the long-term prospects. term of technology in games. Credit where credit is due: Most publishers just announce they are interested in NFTs, and then withdraw after the huge and inevitable backlash. But Ubisoft was stuck with this one, and now Breakpoint players are stuck with a bunch of items that, let’s get real here, have little value and never will.

Not that that stops Ubisoft: the update on the Quartz website ends by saying “Stay tuned for more updates with features for the platform and future drops with other games.” ‘Drops’ is cryptographic jargon for NFT releases: so watch out, fans of less successful Ubisoft games, because you’re next.

Even if players don’t like them, the tendency towards NFTs is unmistakable. Ubisoft announced it was entering them in NovemberEA called NFTs ‘the future of our industry’Discord would integrate them before U-turn after big reactionwhile the good old Steam decided to ban them completely.

As for Ghost Recon fans… well, enjoy your small number. It’s worth saying that digits aside, Ubisoft has supported Breakpoint for over two years after an unsuccessful launch, so stopping content updates seems reasonable. But releasing a new feature like this and backtracking so quickly afterwards can only be called bad looks. Shortly after the launch of Quartz, Nicolas Pouard, Vice President of the Strategic Innovations Lab at Ubisoft (which developed the platform), said: “So it’s really, for [gamers]. It is really beneficial. But they don’t understand for now.” (opens in new tab)

Well, a few months later, it seems like there was really nothing to ‘get’ after all. And indeed, if you bought a Digit, you may very well feel like the one who ‘got it’.

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