In early 2022, GameStop, a major retail chain specializing in video game sales, announced plans to launch its own marketplace for non-fungible tokens (NFTs). This ambitious project came to fruition in July 2022, garnering attention from gaming enthusiasts.
However, according to information from Decrypt, the NFT marketplace's website now displays a message to users indicating its intention to close in the coming month. In this announcement, the company states that GameStop has decided to shut down its NFT market due to ongoing legal uncertainties in the cryptocurrency space.
As of February 2, 2024, customers will no longer be able to make purchases, sales, or create NFTs on the GameStop platform. Nevertheless, the company assures users that NFTs created by them will be stored in the blockchain and remain accessible for sale through other platforms.
This decision marks another step in GameStop's strategy to distance itself from the cryptocurrency space, which it previously showed interest in. In November 2023, the company discontinued support for its cryptocurrency wallet, citing "legal uncertainties in the cryptocurrency space" as the primary reason for this move.
NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are unique blocks of data stored in the blockchain, allowing users to own, buy, and sell digital goods such as in-game items or artwork.
Despite their widespread popularity, NFTs often face criticism for various reasons, including the high carbon footprint associated with the format and the perception of them as a cynical implementation. Nevertheless, several companies in the gaming industry still express interest in NFT technology, integrating them into their products, such as releasing NFTs tied to intellectual property or incorporating NFT support into real games, as seen with Square Enix's Symbiogenesis.
However, the rapid growth of interest in NFTs in the industry seems to have slowed down. According to research in September 2023, approximately 95% of NFT collections now have a market value of zero.