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Via many of my posts, I've made my stance on NFT clear. I think the technology is great. I think it can be used for great things. Blockchains can be more effective than centralized databases for some projects. For now, however, it does more harm than good.
Without trusted entities to regulate them, NFT collectibles are worthless.
Many NFT investors know that fact, and they're abusing the NFT art space to get rich quickly. The victims are the people at the bottom who get into the space simply because they think it's the future. Then they lose money to the big traders who use it to artificially manipulate the monetary volume of the market.
Of course, when entities that regulate NFTs emerge, this type of abuse might stop, but many people will lose their money before then.
Any big non-NFT company entering this space at this time will have many challenges. There are no trusted regulators in sight yet. It's just too soon!
It looks high quality. I'm not an expert on figures, but it seems like a good product ...Until you realize it comes with a non-optional NFT.
Both digital certificate of authenticity and digital version of the figure are managed by the block chain technology known as NFTs. Digital certificate of authenticity provides proof of authenticity for your original purchase of the figure.
Digital version of the figure can be enjoyed on your smart phone or your PC through dedicated website.
From money making standpoint, I understand their decision. It's also not gaming related, which is the safest direction they could've gone to.
But taking context in mind, this could be very bad in the long term. Many of their fans are angry about this decision. The way they're selling the action figure doesn't allow buyers to choose if they want the NFT with it or not. The NFT that comes with it, can't be sold or transferred, which undermines the whole reason NFTs were.
So, this product doesn't target their fans and doesn't target the usual NFT investors. The only audience I can imagine for this, are the ones who want to have a "transferable" proof of this historical moment in case NFTs became big, which would make these valuable collectible years from now.
In case things didn't go well, Square Enix is leaving all of the risks to the consumers and the blockchain company collaborating with them: Enjin!
There's section called "Caution before Purchasing" and it has a long list of caution points that leaves Square Enix legally safe. One of the points I want to mention is that the NFT they're selling is untradable!!!
● At time of product release, the digital certificate of authenticity and digital version of the figure are not supported on the marketplace and cannot be transferred or sold to a third party.
I understand the reasons for this decision.
Allowing people to trade this can get really out of hand really fast, If they allowed it, I even imagine one of these NFTs being sold at $10,000,000 in a few years with Square Enix not getting any fraction of that.
Trading NFTs between people is one of the main reasons people are into NFT technology in the first place, preventing that makes these NFTs little (if any) different than normal data in a non-blockchain database.
They might decide to allow these NFTs to be traded in the future, but if they do, it'll be on their own rules, and I don't like that... Not to mention the warning they put at the end:
● Warning: In case the Enjin services becomes unavailable in the future, you may lose access to the NFT digital certificate of authenticity and digital version of the figure.
To me, this feels like Square Enix wanted to release digital versions of their Action Figures, and realized how much they can lower the cost on their side if they relied on the collective blockchain community to manage that. Which is fair and all, but they're playing it too safe here, squishing most of the value to both NFT collectors and their own fans.
This part of the conversation I tend to ignore, simply because Crypto space as a whole is moving to minimize its dangers to the environment. If NFT technology is going to survive, (which I think will happen,) then this problem is going to be solved eventually.
But the fact stands: Square Enix is trying to make money potentially harming the environment by selling characters who are Eco-terrorists!Extremists who save the planets from a greedy environment-harming company!
...Even if the type of NFT they're selling isn't harmful, it's still bad for their reputation!
I'm most worried about how they'll use NFTs in their games in the future. Square Enix already said that they have no plans of incorporating blockchain technology into their games. FFXIV is safe for now. We don't know for how long, though...
I think Final Fantasy games will have NFTs eventually, but I don't want it to happen at the expense of the gamers who loved the franchise. If it happens, I want it to happen in a way the fans are happy about.
If this Action Figure sells, that eventuality will be much more closer.
I think this Action Figure will sell! I'll be okay with it if it was FFVII fans who bought it and were happy with the NFT they got with it, but sadly, I don't think that would be the case.
I think some NFT investors will buy these figures, (not because they like them, but) to sell them for more in the future... Or some fans will buy this despite having an NFT and being angry about having to make that decision!
Either way, Square Enix business team will see this as a success, and push their plans for incorporating NFTs in their games forward... That's a future I don't want to see. Not so soon! It might also backfire, not only on Square Enix, but on the gaming community and the blockchain community too.