Bandai Namco, SEGA among gaming giants eyeing blockchain gaming
Japanese gaming giants are positioning for mainstream blockchain game adoption, and will not be swayed by the section of gamers that are against crypto and nonfungible tokens (NFTs), an exec from the Oasys blockchain project told Cointelegraph.
Speaking to Cointelegraph at the 2022 Tokyo Games Show last week, Oasys Representative Director Ryo Matsubara emphasized that the project’s big-name partners such as Bandai Namco, Sega and Square Enix are not just jumping on the crypto bandwagon —there’s a long-term vision for blockchain-based Play-to-Earn (P2E) gaming:
«We have a shared vision about blockchain at the executive level. They don’t [want to] change that policy. They really understand the future adoption of blockchain. They’re not thinking about, you know, just the revenue, they want to create the next future [of gaming].”
Bandai Namco has developed beloved titles such as Tekken and Pac-Man, Sega’s most famous title is generally seen as Sonic the Hedgehog, while Square Enix is the developer of the widely popular Final Fantasy franchise.
Questioned whether these companies are looking to integrate blockchain tech with their current gaming franchises, Matsubara suggested that they are initially looking at developing brand new blockchain games instead.
He noted that as this is a completely “new model” of gaming, it needs more time to mature before these big companies will look at broader blockchain integrations with traditional games.
“When the model is fixed, becomes sustainable and successful, then strong [popular] IP will be added,” he said.
Looking at what needs to be improved in blockchain gaming, Matsubara noted that a “big problem” so far is that many projects are too dependent on the price of in-game tokens. As a result, there is more demand for “speculation” rather than the gameplay itself.
He went on to note that there will be an “adjustment” over time as projects work to develop genuine hype for the games themselves, most likely by improving the overall gaming experience.
Related: Japanese gov’t issues NFTs to reward local authorities’ work
This echoed similar sentiments to the lead community manager at Australia-based game developer and Animoca Brands subsidiary Blowfish Studios Luke Sillay, who was also at the event.
During an interview with Cointelegraph, Sillay emphasized that more people want games that are actually “fun to play” rather than just a hustle to earn tokens.
Oasys’ proof-of-stake blockchain is geared directly towards gaming and is tentatively set for an official mainnet launch in the remaining months of this year. Matsubara also hinted that games from its big-name partners will likely be announced next year.
Looking outside Japan, major western gaming companies such as Fortnite developers Epic Games have increased exposure to blockchain gaming of late. Last week the Epic Games store listed a new free-to-play NFT game called Blankos Block Party by Mythical Games.
The move follows comments from Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney in July, in which he stated that his company “definitely” wouldn’t follow Microsoft’s Minecraft in banning NFT integrations in games.