Will now “step back from the NFT space”.
In light of the intense criticism following yesterday’s news that Team17 was launching an “environmentally friendly” Worms NFT project, the publisher has announced it will no longer be going ahead with its plans.
“Team17 is today announcing an end to the MetaWorms NFT project,” the company wrote in a statement on Twitter. “We have listened to our Teamsters, development partners, and our games’ communities, and the concerns they’ve expressed, and have therefore taken the decision to step back from the NFT space.”
Eurogamer understands some within Team17 had already aired their disproval of the company’s NFT plans ahead of their reveal, but Team17 management chose to forge ahead with the announcement regardless. Reaction to the project was, predictably enough, overwhelmingly negative, with Aggro Crab, developer of Team17-published rogue-like Going Under, even going as far as to say it would never work with the publisher again.
Team17 isn’t the first company to do a U-turn on its NFT plans following an intense industry and consumer backlash, of course; Stalker 2 developer GSC Game World reversed course on its plans to introduce its own blockchain-driven “metaverse” awash with NFTs after the announcement was less than warmly received. Similarly, prolific voice actor Troy Baker yesterday abandoned his plans to partner with a controversial voice NFT company.
Still, plenty more video game companies remain perfectly happy foisting NFTs on the public, shamelessly deploying planet-burning blockchain-based technologies in the process. Atari recently released giftable “surprise” NFT lootboxes to celebrate its 50th anniversary, while Konami (rather depressingly) earned over £118,000 from that Castlevania NFT auction.
Meanwhile, EA boss Andrew Wilson believes NFTs are the future, and Ubisoft is already waist-deep in the stuff, having launched Quartz, its “energy-efficient” NFT platform for AAA games, last year. And if any of that makes you feel a little bit nauseous, don’t worry – according to one Ubisoft boss, it’s just because you “don’t get it”.