If NFT fanatics were asking ‘XBox or PlayStation,’ they might have a reason to be partial after this week. A new patent from Sony’s console gaming division has been generating buzz around potential blockchain-based games for the console in the future.
Let’s take a look at the details available thus far surrounding the patent, and how it could impact the future of gaming.
Sony Interactive has finally seen publication of a U.S. patent titled “Tracking Unique In-Game Digital Assets Using Tokens on a Distributed Ledger,” which was submitted with an application date of July 2021. The abstract descriptor of the patent outlines the desire to have a mechanism that “tracking digital assets associated with video games,” which includes the likes of “in-game items or characters.”
Don’t hold your hopes up too high on a patent filing alone, however. Last year, we speculated that an ‘e-sports betting platform’ patent filing from Sony that directly referenced potential crypto integration, and referenced potential integration with gaming consoles and VR/AR. That filing, which was initially submitted in 2019, has yet to see any real direct output through any Sony product.
Meanwhile, this latest filing was submitted in the midst of the bull market, and with the last year’s crypto conditions, it wouldn’t be surprised if the biggest global gaming firms are pumping the brakes on any initial strategizing around the space. While Sony in the big picture is likely to be exploring crypto avenues, the likelihood of seeing Sony Interactive (and subsidiaries like PlayStation specifically) move in the near term is small; nonetheless, the gaming console sphere is somewhat small, and this latest patent puts PlayStation towards the top of the list of potential gaming consoles to host NFTs or blockchain-related technology in some capacity.
Sony (NYSE: SONY) is the latest conglomerate to be featured in the rumor mill surrounding NFTs and blockchain technology. | Source: NYSE: SONY on TradingView.com
NFTs & Gaming: How Does It Translate?
Speculation around gaming has generally been left for the specific titles, and understandably so. After all, the case study projection for NFTs has largely centered around the potential of specific titles: experts cite consumers willingness to pay for digital items across titles like Fortnite or CS:GO – rarely does the NFT conversation start with Xbox or PlayStation. But NFTs drive ownership – so how does one own their in-game skin across multiple titles? How does the ownership translate from one title to the next if the titles don’t share developers or publishers?
These are a few of the title-specific hurdles that NFTs in gaming will need to work through, and while there is likely no immediate roadmap for titles or consoles, a standardized system would likely start from the top (consoles) and work down.
We’ll see if Sony or PlayStation pull the trigger on anything NFT as we look towards the next console cycle in years ahead.
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