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Well that’s awkward!
The NFT market is finding itself in a bit of a pickle recently. After its meteoric rise in 2021, sales of NFTs have since levelled off and may in fact be in a bit of a decline, though that hasn’t stopped the likes of GameStop entering the space with its own NFT marketplace. In even more bizarre news, a Web 3 company known as Polium introduced the “world’s first” NFT console, making us question the direction of human evolution.
Despite the ongoing popularity of NFTs within certain communities, it’s clear that more and more people are coming out of the woodwork to denounce the concept altogether. At the recent International Games Festival in Brazil, one dev actually managed to give an entire talk on why NFTs are “a nightmare”, despite the fact that the event was being sponsored by a number of NFT and blockchain companies.
Known for his work on the tactical RPG Chroma Squad, developer Mark Venturelli initially kicked off his talk by labelling it as “The Future of Game Design”, but surprised audience members part way through when he effectively crossed out the title in the slideshow and replaced it with “Why NFTs Are a Nightmare”. The talk itself was uploaded to YouTube and his slides have been kindly translated into English for you to peruse.
What’s particularly interesting is that despite the numerous sponsorships from NFTs-related companies, the event organisers cleared the contents of the talk prior to the presentation, allowing Venturelli to give his statement free of any interruptions. In a statement to PCGamer after the event (thanks, Eurogamer), Venturelli said that the sponsors were understandably not happy with the talk:
“I’ve heard that the sponsors got really mad. They tried to break into the talk while I was talking, but the organisation would not let them. That doesn’t surprise me, because the organisation, not at a single point did they censor me, did they stop me from putting what I wanted on the slides. I gave them access to the slides before the talk. There was never any kind of intention on their side to shut me up or anything like that.”
In a further scathing attack on the event’s sponsors, Venturelli stated that NFT companies are essentially irrelevant and need to buy their way into any influential space:
“These people are outsiders here, they’re not important. They’re just trying to buy their relevance, because they have no actual influence over the future of our industry. If you just give them this space uncontested, you’re just giving them exactly what they want, and buying their narrative that they’re relevant.”
It’s not the first time the concept of NFTs has been the subject of severe criticism. Earlier this year, British publisher Team17 backtracked on its own plans to launch ‘MetaWorms’ NFTs after an overwhelming negative response from consumers and developers alike. Similarly, Sonic publisher SEGA has indicated that it may too take a step back from the NFT space.
What do you make of Venturelli’s talk on NFTs? Do you think the concept is heading the way of the dodo? Let us know with a comment!
[source, via]
About Ollie Reynolds
Ollie Reynolds
Nintendo Life’s resident horror fanatic, when he’s not knee-deep in Resident Evil and Silent Hill lore, Ollie likes to dive into a good horror book while nursing a lovely cup of tea. He also enjoys long walks while listening to video game music… and Motorhead.
Comments (48)
NFTs and crypto in general are basically just a completely useless technology people are trying to retroactively find some kind of actual purpose for and continually coming up blank on. They’re really good for tricking people into thinking they have a point so you can take their money and run before they catch on and the value plummets but that’s about it.
NFT is cancer in video gaming.
Let’s kill the NFT practice for the sake of our future gaming!
It’s 2 hours, but watch at least the firs 20 mins.
Good on the event organizers for letting him speak uninterrupted. I’m sure that the NFT companies were quite upset about it!
That’s been my favourite part about this statement: “NFT companies are outsiders buying their relevance”, which is why it’s so important that we do not allow this to become relevant.
….And there i thought NFTs died and that gaming was finally saved, but nope
I wouldn’t say it’s clear more people are coming out against it, I’d say it’s fantastic that more people are coming out against it.
@Kiz3000 Buying and selling digital assets is not what gaming is supposed to be about. It’s supposed to be about having fun.
@Lizuka Crypto has tons of uses. From the top of the list, and most simple one is being able to transfer funds internationally instantly and without huge bank fees. Just with that reason by itself it tumbles whatever bank system you use.
I’ll not enter a crypto discussion, but know what you’re talking about beforehand.
NFT – No F’ing Thanks.
@Kiz3000 Ownership is a legal concept. It’s got nothing to do with the technology behind it.
@YoshiF2 or sending funds to hostile foreign powers. Or hacking them and stealing the money with no chance of recovery. Or losing the money because you lost your wallet.
You get what you pay for.
"[Mark Venturelli’s] talk absolutely rails on the idea of implementing NFTs and “play to earn” in video games, attacking the environmental cost, predatory practices, and the fact that they’ll turn games into salt mines and sweatshops, rather than creative works people can simply enjoy." —Luke Plunkett
I LOVE that the Games Festival let the speaker run with it, sponsors be damned. More and more, we’re seeing important voices in the games industry speak out against the NFT problem. And that’s important to make sure that games stay games.
the sooner they die off, the better for the world
How dare you say the emperor has no clothes!
@Kiz3000 I don’t think that’s true at all. If you buy a game as an NFT, the publisher is under no more obligation to keep that game available for download as they are if you’d bought it off steam or the eShop. If it gets delisted, your NFT becomes useless. All you “own” is proof the transaction took place.
It’s literally the same system we already have, but with extra steps in between that are terrible for the environment.
NFTs are a solution in search of a problem. And I think that’s being generous.
@Kiz3000 I don’t see how that’s any different than our current system. It will never be efficient to encode the actual game in an NFT, meaning there’s no difference between it and a regular license key, as they both depend on a centralized service.
If they want to stop allowing downloads once the NFT is sold, they can. You’re still totally at the whims of the centralized owner.
@Kiz3000 If you buy an NFT you don’t actually own it. All you own is a receipt that says that you own it. You have been fooled hard. The technology behind NFTs does not in any way do anything that can’t be done otherwise. It’s useless.
Eradicate those darn monkeys
@YoshiF2 And oftentimes you have to pay transaction fees to actually use it anyway, and additionally with the price as highly volatile as it is it essentially leaves the pricing of anything you use it on as being completely random.
In theory it could be useful, in practice it just flat out isn’t.
At GDC, someone said the Wii was 2 gamecubes duct taped together. Sold over 100 million units. Sometimes although you have a point, you are not seeing the bigger picture.
@TryToBeHopeful LOL… all those happen even with bank accounts. What’s your point? 😂
@Lizuka it depends on which crypto you use. XRP has an almost non-existent fee with every transaction and it’s almost instantly. It depends on how you use it. You could buy XRP in a minute and transfer it in mere seconds. It’s not THAT volatile.
This was a great moment. Chroma Squad is so good too, too many people slept on that one.
@YoshiF2 if your bank account is hacked for reasons beyond your control, you are covered. You cannot send money to Russia. If you lose your wallet your bank sends you a new bank card, or you use your id to get money out… come on.
Now that’s a feel good news story to wake up to. This literally feels like a scene out of a movie where the bad guys coerce the hero into saying what they want but instead he rips up the notes and starts speaking his own mind and the villains get furious about it.
Specific I know but I feel like I’ve seen this kind of moment before….
@TryToBeHopeful How are you not able to send money to Russia? How do you think their allies pay for their stuff? YOU can’t, but other countries surely can.
Also, if you lose a debit card (same as the wallet) and someone buys stuff with it. You’re not covered. You’re covered with credit cards.
Also if you’re hacked into a normal account. You’re not covered. It depends on the bank and the country.
The point is, you have exactly the same CONS you mentioned with banks.
@Kiz3000 Nah, never happening. Publishers like the idea that you’re just buying a license. In fact, the fact you physically own a disc that prevents them from exerting their authority over said license is largely seen as a pesky inconvenience. You’re absolutely dreaming if you think the blockchain will be utilized to give you ownership over a digital game. If anything, I expect even individual licenses to eventually go away and it’ll all be done via subscription plans. Bleak, but it is what it is.
@YoshiF2 I don’t want to send money to Russia. I’m making a point that sometimes there are barriers for good reason.
If I lose my wallet and someone buys stuff with my debit card, yes I am covered.
It’s ok. You like crypto.
Physical media is dying and NFTs WILL become a part of gaming
@Kiz3000 You didn’t intend this, no doubt, but you just explained for me the aggression and shrill desperation of people who repeat these tired slogans over and over.
I always wondered why some were so eager to push “the death of physical!” as if such an absurd and clearly authoritarian, anti-customer concept was natural or desirable. Sadly, there will always be scammers out there who want others to become more and more dependent for their schemes to work, but the trend of things is going toward more autonomy, more choice, and more access to information, although I get that many people don’t see that. We don’t have “dumb terminal” computers, we have PCs and smartphones with their own independent hardware. We have open source software. We have a spirit of education, critical thinking and fact-checking that even tyrannical governments are having a hard time keeping in the bottle.
So yeah, buddy, you tell us more about “the death of physical” and other big lies – ’cause maybe, if you repeat it enough, the gullible will believe, right? People don’t want to be permanently dependent on some network or authority to do the things they are perfectly capable of doing locally or independently, as the XBox One débâcle shows. Kindle and tablets didn’t destroy physical books, auto-translation hasn’t destroyed language learning, and NFTs (ROFL) aren’t going to destroy anything, except the bank accounts of the unwary. Tell us another one…
I expect even individual licenses to eventually go away and it’ll all be done via subscription plans. Bleak, but it is what it is.
@BartoxTharglod That kind of catastrophic scenario only happens if we allow it to happen. No one is going to enforce such a thing, any more than people would tolerate the outlawing of print books. Even in the dystopian scenario where the industry colludes to deprecate discs and cartridges, all it takes to defeat is one publisher or platform-holder continuing to sell physical media. Even in the PC market, we have GOG as well as Steam.
@Kiz3000 Read the translated presentation, watch "Line Goes Up" on Youtube.
Everything you’re saying is crypto-simp propaganda and not how any of this works. And both of those should explain why for you.
Don’t get yourself scammed, learn about what you are defending before you defend it.
@Kiz3000 I believe people can find an actual use for this technology but I wonder if it’s related to game ownership. Digital games, unlike physical, can be sold for infinite copies so long the servers last.
Why buy an "used" digital game when you can buy a brand new (which are exactly the same, I know digital games don’t age)? Maybe the reseller is selling cheaper? That’s a fair point, but then, why would video game manufacturers implement this technology if it only serves to reduce their own sold copies? Digital games already exist as an opposition to resellers of physical games, funneling every sale to the publishers.
Again, I do believe we can work something good out of this technology, but I don’t think it’s anything we can grasp just yet.
@Lizuka Out of curiosity, how many books on crypto have you read? How many instructional videos have you watched on how the asset works? How much research have you done? Not having a go or trying to catch you out, just curious.
@Bobb I believe the European Courts ruled that consumers must be able to sell digital games. I can’t see that has actually come to fruition so I imagine it is still held up by the businesses opposing the idea. it also may have been shelved but from a quick Google I can’t find anything one way or the other.
In regards to NFTs I admit that I do not know as much as I should, simply because I find them baffling in their current form. I do believe they have a use but others have pointed me in the direction of other people far more knowledgeable than me that say otherwise. Consider me schooled.
NFTs and Web 3 already failed even before the Intellivision Amico and Polium One launch if they ever launch at all.
@Kiz3000 I think I might have heard of this Court ruling. In that case it’s certainly a possibility, even if it goes against the wishes of publishers and manufacturers. Only the future will tell
@Lizuka Technically they aren’t coming up blank on ideas. They have A TON of really really stupid ideas to complicate everyone’s lives for every mundane activity in order to somehow tie making money to it.
@Ironcore The more I got into crypto the more I was skeptical of it. It’s so easy to have money in some project and think "WOW THIS SHOULD BE THE NEXT BIG THING" but once you don’t have money in it, and you think a bit more clearly you realize that 99.9% of projects are creating a solution that nobody needs.
That’s not to say that at least bitcoin and ethereum are interesting projects with some applications. Just like almost everything else is solving some non-existant problem or trying to carbon copy those two and claim they’re better.
How about instead of owning jpegs publishers let us own the games we pay for?
You can always tell from these comments who has money invested in Crypto/ NFTs and who doesn’t.
@cylemmulo Youre absolutely right, 99% of projects are garbage and will not exist in the next few years/decade but there are 10s of thousands of them. Its still in its infancy and with that comes lots of bandwaggons, copycats and so on. Its already begun that lots of companies are using the tech behind closed doors. The end user doesnt need to know what they are using. I wouldnt be surprised if you use the services of a company that uses blockchain, google, apple, tesla, paypal, london stock exchange and so on. Same as NFTs, you will soon be using them not even know thats the underlying tech.
@Ironcore i’m not really sure if that will be the case of not. Seems like if you have an NFT being used in the background in most cases, it’s just the same thing as what we have now if you’re talking about tickets or something.
That’s the crux of the problem with web3 to me really. It’s taking everything we do and somehow it sounds like it’s all worse, all tied to money or tokens or more complicated ways of doing things under the guise of like unbanking people or decentralizing things that don’t always need that.
What incentive do companies have outside of trying to maybe seem like they’re keeping up with the times, or something.
@cylemmulo Its not so different to what email brought us. Crypto isnt so new and profound, its really just the next step. These are the sort of questions to try and answer if you ever get round to researching the topic.
@Ironcore I don’t see how it really compares to email. A letter went from taking days to send, to less than a second to send, easier to organize, easier to search, easier to store.
What part of crypto really revolutionizes anything that much? Sending money across borders is easier and quicker sure (though for your average person, this doesn’t matter at all), but that’s about the only thing I can possibly think of that is anywhere comparable.
I’ve researched the topic. I’ve invested in crypto, I’ve read a book or two on the topic. I think when you get the point of claiming it’s going to be the new profound next step you really have to have something to back that up though because all research I’ve done doesn’t really point there when you leave the small area of the cryptosphere.
@cylemmulo You are so close.
@Ironcore k
@TryToBeHopeful yes, you are sending me a UK link. But, did you know there’s a whole world outside of the United Kingdom? And, this is a surprise, everything works differently from what you see everyday. Let’s talk about how some drive on the left side of the car, now imagine how international banks work. 😆
Not every bank in every country have you covered with debit accounts.
1) you Can be hacked, either it be with bank accounts or crypto
2) any government can send money to their allies, either it be with crypto or bank transfers
3) if you lose your crypto wallet, well, that’s on you. You don’t go losing your real world wallet and complaining about the monetary system, do you?
It’s not about whether I like cryptos or not, that’s a fallacy and a poor argument. It’s about facts.
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