Many of us who grew up playing video games would remember the horrors of Konami’s Silent Hill. Whether by enjoying good stealth gameplay in Metal Gear back in 1998 or the recent duel mechanisms in Yu-gi-Oh Master Duel in 2022, Konami is a household name. The giant Japanese entertainment company is recently making BIG plans for its Web3 expansion. Earlier this year, Konami launched its first-ever NFT collection and generated thousands of dollars. Recently, Konami announced that it’s planning to create a platform where players can trade in-game NFTs. However, Konami’s busy plans for Web3 have sparked outrage among fans.
Konami NFTs: Castlevania
Konami hopped onto the NFT trend back in January 2022 in celebration of Castlevania’s 35th anniversary. Castlevania is a gothic horror action-adventure game that first released in 1986. The last installment of the game was in 2019 and the franchise has its own Netflix series adaptation. In short, Konami’s Castlevania has a HUGE fanbase that goes back three decades. So in order to honor the franchise, the company released the Konami Memorial NFT collection.
The collection consisted of fourteen NFTs that sold in an auction from January 12 to January 14. The NFTs were mostly gifs of snippets of gameplay from the first three Castlevania installments. There were also graphics of in-game maps and art from Castlevania: Circle of the Moon. The entire collection was sold out on January 15 for $162,000 on Opensea! In addition, the first people to buy the Konami NFTs had their names commemorated on Konami’s website for 10 months. “You will be entitled to have your desired nickname listed as the first purchaser of the NFT on our website,” says Konami.
Konami stated that the Konami Memorial NFTs were an initiative to share Castlevania content. Further stating that the company will continue to explore new blockchain technology in the future. And that’s exactly what Konami did.
Commemorative Gaming Art
After the successful launch of its first NFT collection, Konami stated that NFTs are here to stay. In a financial report, Konami shared its plans of keeping selling NFTs as a way to “preserve” iconic gaming content as commemorative art.
However, the idea of “preservation” had fans questioning the real intent of Konami concerning selling NFTs. They voiced their opinions about the matter by debunking the “preservation” claim. To them, if the aim was to preserve the artwork then it can be simply shared online. And if the aim was to compensate the artists, then physical prints could be the solution. The gaming community is having a hard time accepting Konami’s interest in NFTs. They claim that NFTs are useless and are a money-grabbing strategy blaming Konami for only “preserving” its profit.
Konami’s Web3 Expansion
Regardless of the major controversy, Konami is stirring within its fanbase, it is turning a blind eye and venturing into its Web3 expansion. Konami is planning to create its own platform for trading in-game NFTs as some sort of NFT marketplace. Konami has stated recently that it is recruiting a “wide range of talent for system construction and service development to provide new experiences such as Web3 and Metaverse”. Meaning that Konami is already in its first phase of constructing its NFT marketplace and started to post job listings.
Konami doesn’t have a name yet for this NFT trading platform, it is calling it for now a “unique distribution platform”. The job listing includes thirteen roles that are related to system engineers, programmers, project managers, business developers, and designers.
In addition, Konami is planning to integrate NFTs into their games as digital assets. “We have been conducting research and development to incorporate the latest technology into games and contents, and plan to launch a service where players can trade their in-game NFTs (digital items) through a unique distribution platform using blockchain,” Konami stated.
Gaming NFTs Frenzy
Traditional gamers all over the world are finding NFTs a pill hard to swallow. Specifically when this pill is coming from huge gaming companies that make their favorite franchise. Even though play-to-earn games are getting popular, traditional gamers are NOT fans of NFTs. However, major gaming companies like Konami, Sony, and Square Enix are seeing beyond fans’ outcry by including NFTs in their business plan. It’s either these game companies truly believe in blockchain technology and how NFTs can revolutionize the gaming industry, or they are simply taking advantage of the NFT craze to make the most profit out of them. Either way, considering how the NFT market is crashing, gaming companies need to re-evaluate their plans.