A new PlayStation NFT patent covers cross-platform use and trading
A recently published patent shows that Sony Interactive Entertainment has been exploring ways to use NFTs and blockchain technology in games.
Filed last year and published on Thursday, Sony’s patent (via Segment Next) is titled ‘NFT Framework For Transferring And Using Digital Assets Between Game Platforms’.
“As recognized here, in some applications such as computer/video games, an NFT may represent the artwork or an in-game asset (such as a character or weapon or other game element), but current systems are technologically insufficient for the owner to use the asset on across different games and platforms,” says a summary.
“Therefore, as further recognized herein, the functionality of the game may be enhanced by allowing players and/or spectators to exclusively use the asset and possibly transfer the rights to others via NFT”.
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An example given is players getting a unique skin in a game that can then be used in other titles and even on different gaming platforms.
Such NFTs can also be “transferred to others (eg sold to others for value or exchanged)”, Sony said.
Another example describes rewarding the first person to beat a boss in a game “the right to use hunter damage weapons in other games according to your new NFT”.
“As yet another example, an NFT representing reaching a certain level, score and/or point collection in a particular video game may be minted,” the patent states.
“The NFT may then be transferred to someone else, who may then resume play where the transferor left off pursuant to the NFT, so that the recipient begins play at the same level, with the same score, and/or with the same score as the transferor.”
A Sony patent filed in May 2021 and published last November first revealed that the company had been actively exploring the potential use of NFTs and blockchain technology in games.
Last September, the platform holder launched a loyalty scheme called PlayStation Stars, which enables players to earn digital rewards by completing various activities. However, it was quick to distance the program from NFTs, which have attracted criticism in some quarters due to the format’s high carbon footprint and what many perceive as cynical implementation.
“It’s definitely not NFTs,” Grace Chen, PlayStation’s vice president of network advertising, loyalty and licensed merchandise, told The Washington Post. “Definitely not. You can’t trade them or sell them. It doesn’t leverage any blockchain technologies and definitely not NFTs.”
Game companies that have launched NFT projects or are considering doing so include Square Enix, Ubisoft, Konami and Sega.