Mainstream Gaming Companies Find Blockchain Connection

eSports -- Getty images
Credit: Getty images

By David Potter

Among the industries that are slowly being transformed by blockchain technology — from financial services to healthcare — there is one particularly lucrative sector that has made notable headway in its journey toward distributed ledger adoption in recent days.

The video game industry, projected to become a $124.8 billion sector this year, has been fertile ground for blockchain applications for some time. Blockchain-based game rewards, often built as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), for instance, have established themselves in several independent video games like CryptoAssault. Flash games website Satoshi’s Games recreates nostalgic games while integrating rewards paid via bitcoin on the blockhain-based Lightning Network.

As of late last month, a new nexus is emerging through which some more household names might join the wave.

A Blockchain Sandbox for Major Game Producers

“Square Enix, the Japanese gaming giant behind world-renowned games such as Final Fantasy and Tomb Raider, has put its backing behind the potential of blockchain in the gaming sector by investing in Ethereum-based game developer TSB Gaming,” according to a March 30, 2020 report from Forbes. “TSB — which stands for ‘The Sand Box’ is one of the world’s largest independent user-generated content and gaming platforms … The blockchain version of The Sandbox is a virtual world being built on the Ethereum blockchain to allow players to build, own and monetize their own voxel gaming experiences.”

TSB is led by COO Sebastian Borget, who is overseeing the firm’s work to bake novel blockchain-based features into the way video games are played, built and shared across communities. 

“The Sandbox is a pioneer in the space of blockchain gaming, NFTs and true digital ownership, and we are thrilled to have Square Enix with us as a strategic investor, supporting our ambitious vision of building the metaverse where creators can make games on their lands and trade assets on our marketplace in a totally decentralized manner,” Borget said of the announced partnership, per Forbes.

And it appears that Borget will have some additional mainstream contacts to rely on as his project continues development of blockchain-based video game technologies.

The Blockchain Game Alliance, a membership organization dedicated to encouraging the use of the technology within the video game industry, announced on March 30, 2020, that Borget would be leading the group with major gaming company Ubisoft returning as a sponsor.

“A passionate advocate for blockchain technology, gaming and education, Borget is an active speaker and evangelist for the benefits that non-fungible tokens bring to gaming,” according to the announcement. “Ubisoft is a leading creator, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment and services, with a rich portfolio of world-renowned brands, including Assassin’s Creed, Just Dance, Tom Clancy’s video game series, Rayman, Far Cry and Watch Dogs.”

Only time will tell just how fertile these new alliances between this leading blockchain-based gaming firm and these major gaming companies will be, but it’s almost certain that some of the world’s favorite games will soon be playing with more decentralized features.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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