The company that makes Assassin’s Creed is still building in Web3 and has now added Rabbids NFT avatars to its growing list of moves in the crypto industry.
With Ghost Recon Breakpoint in December 2021, Ubisoft was the first big video game company to add NFT items to a game. The response was mixed, but the company has continued to make moves in the Web3 world. Its latest? The Rabbids NFT avatars for the Ethereum metaverse game The Sandbox came out today.
The NFT release comes a year after Ubisoft first said it would bring its popular Rabbids characters, which came from the Rayman game series, to The Sandbox. Ubisoft started the sale today for people who were already on a “allowlist.” The sale for everyone else will start on Wednesday.
Ubisoft is selling 2,066 Rabbids avatars through Polygon, an Ethereum scaling network. Each NFT costs 100 SAND, which is about $78 at the time this article was written. Since 2023 is the year of the rabbit, the drop is based on the Lunar New Year, and the Rabbids will have different designs that will be shown to buyers this Friday.
So, on February 28, The Sandbox’s open alpha test, which has a limited number of playable experiences, will add a Rabbids game world. In The Sandbox, the avatars are described as “the key to future utility,” which could mean that they give you access to future drops.
The Sandbox added Rabbids characters to its NFT Institute experience, which is like a museum, last September. It also made Rabbids-themed NFT items and accessories available. With today’s mint, players will be able to buy Rabbids avatars for use in the game for the first time.
Ubisoft, the studio behind the Assassin’s Creed and Just Dance franchises, was one of the first big video game publishers to notice Web3 and start making moves around NFTs. In 2018, the company made a prototype of an NFT game called HashCraft that was based on Minecraft. However, the project was eventually put on hold. Still, Ubisoft grew more in the cryptocurrency business.
In 2020, Ubisoft put out a Rabbids-themed NFT experiment to raise money for the charity UNICEF. Users could collect Rabbids and even steal them from other owners. The next year, Web3 fantasy sports company Sorare and Ubisoft worked together to make One Shot League, a spinoff of Sorare that used its existing Ethereum NFT soccer player cards.
Ubisoft has also supported NFT games like Axie Infinity and Nine Chronicles and invest into companies like Animoca Brands and Horizon, which make games.
The company’s launch of Tezos-based NFTs for the PC version of Ghost Recon Breakpoint was a turning point for the company’s Web3 push. It connected the assets into an existing, traditional video game that did not have NFT functionality at launch. Ubisoft called the NFTs “Quartz,” and they let people collect and trade unique weapons and gear for the squad-based shooter.
Several gamers have been openly opposed to NFTs because of scams in the crypto space, high prices for some assets, and what some perceive to be another another way for game producers to extract money from players.
What plans does Ubisoft have for the future?
Ubisoft stopped its post-launch support for the game in April 2022, but stated that it will use the Quartz platform for future games. It has not yet revealed any other Quartz NFT projects.
Yves Guillemot, CEO of Ubisoft, stated in an interview last September that the company was “still in research mode” with Web3 implementation and that the gaming giant should have made it plain to users that Quartz was an experiment and a work in progress.
Some gamers who don’t like NFTs took that as a sign that Ubisoft was leaving the market, but the company has kept moving since then.
It has teamed with cloud storage firm http://Aleph.im to develop fully decentralized smart contracts on Tezos. The addition of Rabbids NFTs is just the latest step in Ubisoft’s ongoing Web3 expansion.
Cover Image Source: decrypt.co