Leading video game company Ubisoft (OTC:UBSFY) is pushing into the metaverse with a new partnership announced with The Sandbox (CRYPTO: SAND). Here’s why Ubisoft is pushing into the metaverse and non-fungible tokens, while other gaming companies are taking a wait-and-see approach.
What Happened: The Sandbox announced in a Medium post that Ubisoft is bringing its popular Rabbids characters in the company’s metaverse.
“We’re excited to bring the Rabbids to The Sandbox community and to empower players to create their own original experiences incorporating elements of our gaming IP. We can’t wait to see how they make the Rabbids’ world their own,” Ubisoft said.
Ubisoft will have its own estate inside The Sandbox, according to the article.
The Sandbox said voxel characters and items will be available incorporating the Rabbids characters.
“We want to partner with Ips and brands that players already love, such as those of Ubisoft’s world-leading games, to keep bringing fresh new experiences to players alongside popular characters and items creators can use in their own original adventures in The Sandbox,” The Sandbox COO and co-founder Sebastien Borget said.
The Sandbox has over 200 partnerships with companies and celebrities and has been among the ways to attract people to get on-boarded to the metaverse.
Ubisoft owns a portfolio of gaming brands that includes Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, Watch Dogs, Just Dance, Rabbids and a series of games under the Tom Clancy banner.
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Why It’s Important: Ubisoft said that the addition of Rabbids could be a great opportunity for the company to experiment with the metaverse for its brands.
Launching into the metaverse via The Sandbox follows the Ubisoft launch of in-game NFTs in December to further push into new areas of gaming growth.
The company launched Ubisoft Quartz as a platform to allow gamers to earn and purchase items tokenized as NFTs.
“Ubisoft Quartz is a new experience for our players, built upon our vision of creating an ever-greater connection between you and the game worlds you love,” Ubisoft said at the time.
Ubisoft said it planned to enter the metaverse back in December. “Ubisoft Quartz is the first building block in our ambitious vision for developing a true metaverse,” Ubisoft Strategic Innovation Lab VP Nicolas Pourad said.
For Ubisoft, growth in the metaverse and through NFTs could be a way to boost their subscription service called Ubisoft+. The subscription service offers access to over 100 Ubisoft games and unlockable downloadable content.
Ubisoft could also gain with a first mover advantage in the metaverse and non-fungible tokens among major video game companies, with others more reluctant to push forward.
Take-Two Interactive Software (NASDAQ:TTWO) said recently that it sees a future in NFTs, but wasn’t pushing forward yet. CEO Strauss Zelnick was cautious towards NFTs calling the market speculation.
“We want to make sure that consumers always have a good experience every time they engage with our properties.” Zelnick said. “And losing money on a speculation is not a good experience, so we’re going to stay away from speculation.”
Zelnick wouldn’t rule out a future with NFTs for Take-Two games, which is likely good news for Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA), a mobile game company being acquired by Take-Two.
Zynga announced in November 2021 that it had hired a new vice president of blockchain gaming and was pursuing the “benefits that NFTs and blockchain technology can bring to our existing titles.”
Video game publisher Electronic Arts Inc (NASDAQ:EA) has also backed off on bringing NFTs into its games. CEO Andrew Wilson emphasized collectability being important to EA games, but wouldn’t say whether NFTs fit into that narrative.
“Whether that’s part of NFTs and the blockchain, well, that remains to be seen,” Wilson said. “We’ll evaluate that over time, but right now it’s not something that we’re driving hard against.”
The comments from Wilson showed a more cautious approach to NFTs months after saying the company could be early in the space.
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