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Ubisoft announces "energy-efficient" NFT platform for AAA games

Beginning with NFTs in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Breakpoint.

Ubisoft has announced Quartz, its own NFT platform for unique items in AAA games which it says will run on "energy-efficient technology" that uses "a million times less energy than a bitcoin transaction".

The first Ubisoft game to offer NFTs will be Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Breakpoint, where Quartz will be integrated in beta form on PC.

These NFTs - named "Digits" - will be in-game cosmetic items with a unique code visibly stamped on. This serial-coded cosmetic can then be kept or sold, with its previous ownership history logged.

Ubisoft says Quartz will be "energy efficient" because it uses Tezos, a blockchain which claims to use "exceedingly less energy to operate than Proof-of-Work blockchains such as Bitcoin or Ethereum".

"We chose Tezos because of its original Proof-of-Stake network and its leadership on clean NFTs," said Ubisoft's blockchain technical director Didier Genevois. "One transaction on their network uses the same amount of energy as streaming 30 seconds of video, while the previous generation of blockchain networks can consume the same energy required for one year of non-stop streaming."

Ubisoft also describes Quartz as an "experiment" - and one which won't initially be available in the UK. Instead, players in the US, Canada, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Australia and Brazil will get first dibs.

"Each Digit is a unique collectible that features its own serial number for others to see in-game, also keeping track of its current and previous owners for years to come, making players an integral part of the game's history," Ubisoft said today. "Digits are high-quality in-game collectibles with active utility value. As playable cosmetic items, Digits provide players the ability to personalise their experience and complete their missions with style.

"Each Digit comes with a certificate of ownership stored on blockchain, a decentralised, community-driven technology independent from Ubisoft, which grants players more control than ever. With Digits, items are no longer bound to a player's game inventory since they can be put on sale for other eligible players to acquire on third-party platforms outside of the Ubisoft ecosystem."

Players will only be able to own one iteration of any unique cosmetic at any one time. In Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Breakpoint, you'll also need to be Level 5 in the game and over 18 years old.

The first three of these Digit cosmetics will be released for free via the Ubisoft Quartz website on the 9th, 12 and 15th for Breakpoint PC owners.

There's no word yet on where these Quartz NFTs might pop up next.

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Tom Phillips

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Tom is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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