Game developers are surprisingly skeptical of blockchain and NFTs, the report says

Game developers are surprisingly skeptical of blockchain and NFTs, the report says

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Vladislav Sopov

State of Game Industry 2023 report from the Game Developers Conference starting in San Francisco in March may disappoint crypto bulls

Contents

  • Sensation: Only 2% of game developers use blockchain, crypto and NFT
  • “Solution looking for problem” or developer’s guilty pleasure?

While play-to-earn was among the most overhyped narratives of the previous cryptocurrency market rally, it remains unclear whether decentralization is actually what the gaming segment needs. A survey of 2,300 game developers suggests that we should not overestimate blockchain use in games as of today.

Sensation: Only 2% of game developers use blockchain, crypto and NFT

The Game Developers Conference 2023 (GDC) team surveyed over 2,000 leading game developers about business models, monetization schemes, technical capabilities and preferred platforms for their products. Two parts of the survey covered developers’ opinions on the prospects for blockchain adoption in games.

The results of the survey may look bearish for cryptocurrency enthusiasts. When asked if their studios are interested in using blockchain technologies in development – ​​whether cryptocurrency, NFT or Web3 as a concept – 75% of participants answered “not interested”, 16% are “somewhat” interested and only 7% are “interested” in experiments with these instruments.

Only 2% already use decentralized instruments in their products. Measurements for positive attitude towards blockchain saw a decrease of 15-20% in one year.

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“What is your opinion on the use of blockchain technology in video games now compared to a year ago?” The answers to this question look even more “bearish”: more than half of the developers claimed that they were against blockchain a year ago and are against it now too; 5% of developers became more pessimistic about blockchain in the last 12 months, while one in four developers are unclear about their opinion.

“Solution looking for problem” or developer’s guilty pleasure?

In a discussion, a number of polar opinions were expressed. Some developers said that the blockchain sphere itself is seeking viable use cases to explain its utility:

Blockchain is a textbook example of a solution looking for a problem. Despite being known for over a decade, it has no practical use cases – apart from cryptocurrency, which itself has a single use case of enabling financial fraud

Less ardent critics of blockchain suggested that the sphere may find use cases for blockchain and NFTs in 10 years or so, but by 2023 databases are as useful as distributed ledgers in games.

However, one developer claimed that some of his colleagues are “exploring its (blockchain Vs) spend more quietly.” It is highly likely that regulatory and ethical issues are the main barriers to crypto adoption and gaming along with the well-known volatility of digital assets.

Game Developers Conference 2023 will take place in San Francisco (CA) between March 20 and March 24, 2023.

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