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  • Writer's pictureJamal Saafir

Sega Exec Sees Unknown Potential Of Blockchain Gaming

According to a report from Decrypt, Sega Co-COO Shuji Utsumi has a positive outlook on blockchain gaming and the distinctive part NFTs could play in the future of video games. This comes months after formerly stating that he felt play-to-earn games were“boring” in an interview with Bloomberg.

“Within blockchain games, owning assets and, in some cases, earning money, could become player wants that haven’t existed before,” Utsumi said in an interview first published as a sponsored post with Dengeki Online last month and translated into a blog post this week.

“This is indeed a transitional phase for the industry,” Utsumi added.

Utsumi’s comments are an element of a broader discussion about how the Sonic the Hedgehog publisher has licensed its Sangokushi Taisen card game’s IP to blockchain firm Double Jump.Tokyo, which is creating a new trading card game (TCG) called Battle of Three Kingdoms with NFT cards inspired by the original 2005 game.

The new Sega-licensed TCG will predominantly focus on Asia’s gaming demographic, will provide over 100 different cards at launch, and will be supported post-launch with continuous game patches and updates, according to the post.

Utsumi said that the new game was licensed to help “revive” the original game’s IP while still making sure to “protect what needs to be protected.”

“Blockchain gaming is still an unknown world for us,” Utsumi explained.

Sega’s Co-COO stated that the producer of the original Sangokushi Taisen game will oversee the development of Battle of Three Kingdoms, and that Sega will also provide game assets as an element of the alliance.

In return, Ustumi said, Sega will gain more knowledge about blockchain games and how they’re constructed, calling it a “win-win” for both parties.

“Sega has been focusing on researching content that utilizes advanced technology and new business models, and blockchain technology was one of those areas,” Utsumi said. “Amidst this context, we decided to consider Sangokushi Taisen as an IP that would be accepted by fans in Japan and other Asian countries, and would harmonize effectively with blockchain technology.”

He stressed that Sega’s foray into blockchain gaming is part of a greater plan to advance and adapt to new technologies.

Nevertheless, Utsumi is aware of the present difficulties crypto games face—such as determining whether or how to apply the use of crypto wallets, which hold assets like NFTs. They typically require users to “connect” them to sites and “sign” transactions in order to make purchases or list items for sale.

“It is difficult for users to create wallets, so we must get people to play the game first,” Ustumi said, sharing that crypto wallets are indeed a “hurdle” to overcome.

But for Utsumi, these special challenges may pale in comparison to their reward.

“I’m looking forward to seeing how NFTs can authentically capture the feeling of owning a card,” he shared.

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