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GameStop sells customers on NFT plans

gamestop-video-games-crypto-nfts-thefutureparty
GameStop // Illustration by Kate Walker

GameStop sells customers on NFT plans

The Future. It was only a matter of time: GameStop is getting into NFTs. The video game retailer is building a marketplace for customers to buy, sell, and trade NFTs tied to game developers and their titles. Is the strategy a Hail Mary to stay relevant? Maybe… but GameStop is playing to the very online retail-trader crowd that saved them last year.

Market a market
GameStop is getting into the minting business.

  • The retailer launched a division of 20 employees to create an NFT marketplace, set to launch later this year.
  • The marketplace would be a hub to buy, sell, and trade NFTs of accessories in games such as outfits and weapons for avatars.
  • The company is also in talks with several undisclosed game developers to list NFTs on its marketplace.

GameStop has already inked deals with two crypto companies to “share technology and co-invest in the development of games that use blockchain and NFT technology.” It hopes to close deals with a “dozen” more before the marketplace launches.

Can’t stop the stonk
With the budding NFT market, GameStop wants to make sure it doesn’t miss out on an exploding trend that is set to reshape the video game industry — just as it did with game streaming. It’s a sort of make-it-or-break-it time for GameStop, which was famously the darling of Reddit retail traders from r/WallStreetBets (and made a lot of short-sellers lose their shirts), but has since seen its stock plunge 45% in the past six weeks.

On the heels of the NFT news, GameStop’s stock recovered 20%. And it could all be perfect timing — major developers Ubisoft, Zynga, and Square Enix all recently announced their intentions to get into NFTs.