Stalker 2 will no longer have any non-fungible tokens (NFTs), following a remarkable U-turn by its developer GSC Game World.
The studio announced earlier this week that it was teaming up with NFT trading platform DMarket to use blockchain technology that it claimed would “let the community own a piece of Stalker 2”.
Players would have been able to register for item drops, the first of which was going to be an auction that allowed one player to become an NPC in the game, which is due for release on PC and Xbox Series X/S in April 2022.
Or, as GSC Game World put it, it would “initiate [its] Metaversial bridge” and bring a “new digital era and unique meta experience you’ve never had before”.
Now, just a few days later, all these plans have been scrapped.
On Thursday the official Stalker twitter account posted a lengthy statement explaining that it wanted to use the “potential income from NFT” to “[improve] the long-awaited game to make it better”.
Although this tweet appeared to be reiterating its commitment to use NFTs, it did dial back on the significance of what it offered, stating that the NPC offers was just “the faces of several NPCs” who “aren’t even involved in the story”.
Despite its attempt at an explanation, fan backlash continued and just a few hours later the tweet was deleted and replaced with a new, much shorter statement announcing plans to completely scrap the idea.
“Dear Stalkers,” it read. “We hear you. Based on the feedback we received, we’ve made a decision to cancel anything NFT-related in Stalker 2.
“The interests of our fans and players are the top priority for the team. We’re making this game for you to enjoy – whatever the cost is. If you care, we care too.”
At the time of writing, the tweet has over 116,000 likes.
GSC Game World was the latest in a line of developers and publishers embracing NFTs, despite what appears to be a sizeable degree of resistance from players. It’s the first notable example of a developer backtracking following a negative response, however.