FIFA Could Introduce NFTs Soon
EA Sports behemoth soccer title FIFA could soon launch NFTs as part of its Ultimate Team gaming model.
FIFA is the dominant force in soccer video games and a billion-dollar title for developers EA Sports. The Ultimate Team mode, known as FUT, encourages players to build their teams through progression in the game, aided by purchasing packs. Those packs contain players and other features that can be used to make your team better. It’s a model that has earned EA Sports a whopping $1.62bn, with NFTs the next obvious step for the title.
EA CEO Andrew Wilson confirmed that he felt the way forward for the games industry was through NFTs. “I think the play to earn or the NFT conversation is still really, really early, and there’s a lot of conversation. And there’s at some level, a lot of hype about it,” said Wilson.
“I do think it will be an important part of the future of our industry on a go-forward basis,” he continued. “But it’s still early to kind of figure out how that’s going to work. I feel good about our position with respect to that. As a company, we have been leaders in the creation of digital content that has real collectible value in the embedding of that content as part of live services.”
EA Sports have certainly been leaders in the creation of digital content, with FUT being one of the most-played game modes of any title across the world. Whilst the focus seems to be on the gaming experience, there is an element of EA wanting to find another method by which is part gamers and their money. The FUT mode has attracted controversy over the years as some countries have viewed their system as a pay-to-win and contravening some gambling laws. EA has taken steps to alleviate that, but they would have to be super careful not to use NFTs as simply another method of income.
There has to be some value to the end-user in NFTs, which has been seen in the rise of fan tokens. These tokens offer fans a chance to get closer to their clubs, not only by owning the NFT but taking part in club decisions and feeling a higher general level of involvement. How a sports franchise such as FIFA achieves that is open to interpretation, but perhaps the fan token model is a way forward. Could FIFA partner with such a provider and offer fan tokens as rewards for play based on the club you support?
It is one exciting option around NFTs within FIFA, and in the wider gaming world, we’re already seeing the impact of NFTs. Ubisoft, the developer behind the Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry series, hopes to be key players within the blockchain gaming revolution and have already stated as much. The future might be unclear as to exact workings, but it does seem that NFTs and gaming are a match made in heaven.
They certainly will be for EA Sports if they can leverage the technology in the same way they have used FUT to become a global revenue stream.
Article contributed by: Jason J. Daniels