Welcome to Get Your Game On! We have… an absurd amount of NFT-related news this week. Let’s get to it, I guess:
Atari Releases “Giftable” NFTs to Celebrate 50th Anniversary
Yes, Atari is getting in on the NFT market. To celebrate their 50th anniversary, Atari teamed up with NFT producers Republic Real to release “GFTs” giftable NFTs that will unwrap at a predetermined date. Only after the NFT has been unwrapped will users know the NFT’s rarity (with the three rarities being “common,” “rare,” and “epic”). So as Eurogamer’s Ed Nightingale pointed out… it’s a lootbox. An NFT lootbox. Wow, we got there fast.
Riot Denies Valorant Character’s Love of NFTs
A weird week for Riot: first they sent a DMCA takedown to a Ukrainian artist selling t-shirts for her webcomic “Arcane Flames” (they have since rescinded the takedown) and now they have had to explain that Valorant character Killjoy is not, in fact, a fan of NFTs.
The misconception came when Riot’s German Valorant account released artwork meant to showcase Killjoy’s interest in programming, which just so happened to include an NFT in it. The art has since been taken down. Was it actually an accident or terrible, terrible foreshadowing? I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough!
Ubisoft Exec Claims That Gamers Don’t Know What’s Good for Them in NFT Interview
Aaaand speaking of NFTs in the gaming world: I’ve noted in a past GYGO that the Ubisoft NFTs have sold incredibly poorly. But rather than take the L and move on, Ubisoft has decided to double-down on their foray into NFTs. Nicolas Pouard, VP of Ubisoft’s Strategic Innovations Lab, and Didier Genevois, Ubisoft’s Blockchain Technical Director, both spoke to Chris Stead at Finder in a softball interview where they acknowledged that “players are always right” but also that “gamers don’t get what a digital secondary market can bring to them.” What if the players do understand and just don’t want to engage in a digital secondary market?
Trailer for New Halo TV Series Drops…
— Halo on Paramount+ (@HaloTheSeries) January 30, 2022
…and it looks okay. I don’t want to give my inner 13-year-old self hope that it’ll be good, but it looks fine.
Kiki Wolfkill, head of transmedia storytelling at 343 Industries clarified last December that the Paramount+ series would be its own timeline (known as the “Halo Silver Timeline”), but judging by the trailer it seems to turn the Halo into something more akin to the Prothean Beacon from the first Mass Effect, which feels like an odd choice. And I do think it’s a little strange that with all Halo‘s compelling alien characters (give me the Arbiter or give me death), the antagonist we’re shown is just… a human who sided with the Covenant. Meh.
That being said, there were little bits here and there that showed the young Spartans, and that gives me hope that the show might touch more on the (now mostly retconned) Fall of Reach novel by Eric Nylund and the raising of the Spartans if they’re looking to pick and choose what to take across the different media.
In other news…
In a 3.6 billion dollar deal, Sony has announced its acquisition of Destiny developer Bungie. Bungie has assured its fans that it will continue to make games for all platforms. More information can be found in Bungie’s FAQ about the acquisition.
Sea of Thieves PvP mode is shutting down in March. According to the blog post detailing the decision, The Arena never attracted more than 2% of players on a regular basis.
After 50 years, Sega is selling off its remaining arcade centers. Although Sega will continue to produce arcade games, the remaining Sega arcade centers in Japan will be sold and rebranded.
Ed Boon, co-creator of Mortal Kombat, will be inducted into The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences’ Hall of Fame. Boon will be honored at the D.I.C.E. Awards ceremony in late February, where his Hall of Fame award will be presented by Matt Booty of Xbox Game Studios.
The first three episodes of The Legend of Vox Machina were released last week to mostly positive reviews. The first season of the Dungeons and Dragons animated series will be 12 episodes, with three new episodes dropping each Friday.
A Lab of One’s Own seeks to honor the experiences of women at MIT by allowing players to interact with archival material from the MIT Libraries’ Department of Distinctive Collections. The virtual installation can be (played? engaged with?) online.
The New York Times just bought Wordle, possibly ending the word game’s brief, shining moment as The Pandemic Game of the Month™. It was nice while it lasted.
December Cuccaro (she/her) is an MFA graduate from the University of Nevada, Reno and a member of the 2021 Clarion West cohort. When not rambling about video games, she writes about sapphic werewolves and sad necromancers searching for friendship.