KEY POINTS

  • Square Enix president Yosuke Matsuda expressed his optimistic perspective on blockchain gaming
  • The company will be exploring NFTs as part of its business strategy for 2022
  • No actual NFT or blockchain game has been revealed so far

The developer of the “Final Fantasy” series has expressed interest in NFTs and blockchain gaming, possibly signaling its entry into this controversial sector of gaming.

In a New Year’s letter, Square Enix president Yosuke Matsuda shared his thoughts regarding the increasing prominence of the “metaverse” as well as the rising popularity of NFTs, or non-fungible tokens. The company previously revealed its intention to enter the NFT and blockchain gaming sphere back in late 2021 after the success of its NFT digital trading cards.

Matsuda noted in the letter how advancements in blockchain, 5G, cloud and extended reality technology have paved the way for the idea of the metaverse to garner the attention of the gaming industry.

Matsuda revealed that he believes the metaverse will “likely see a meaningful transition to a business phase in 2022, with a wide range of services appearing on the scene.”

“As this abstract concept begins to take concrete shape in the form of product and service offerings, I am hoping that it will bring about changes that have a more substantial impact on our business as well,” Matsuda said.

The letter further expounded his interest in non-fungible tokens and blockchain and how these technologies are affecting the business side of things.

According to the letter, Square Enix will be taking NFTs with “viable token economics” into consideration as part of its business strategy in 2022. This is largely a reaction to the changing business sphere in the gaming industry, particularly with the introduction of non-fungible tokens in gaming.

The Reaper class in Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker The Reaper class in Final Fantasy XIV Endwalker Photo: Square Enix

Matsuda acknowledged that the majority of people only play games for fun and that these individuals have “voiced their reservations” regarding blockchain gaming.

Despite this, he believes that there are users who “play to contribute” and that NFTs will motivate these people into making user-generated content outside of their apparent desire for creative expression. He hopes that NFTs will incentivize users into creating content, eventually forming an economy that allows a game to sustain itself.

Concluding his letter, Matsuda said that they will be keeping a close eye on how NFTs are perceived in gaming and will shift their business strategies accordingly. There aren’t any concrete plans for blockchain games yet, but the possibility remains present.

So far, the greater gaming community has decried NFTs in games. Previous attempts to introduce tokens to games have resulted in severe backlash from fans. 

GSC Game World, the developer of the “S.T.A.L.K.E.R.” series, backpedaled on its decision to add NFTs to “S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2” after receiving an overwhelmingly negative response from its community. A similar incident occurred involving “Dead by Daylight.