It’s almost like game companies have control over what happens in their online video games
Rockstar Games has added a new rule for Grand Theft Auto Online players in roleplay servers: no NFTs.
Grand Theft Auto Online’s community has been finding new games of playing and interacting with the game via mods for some time now. Among the popular community created gameplay modes are roleplay servers. In these servers, you don’t play as the usual playable character who does criminal missions and earns money as you usually do in Grand Theft Auto Online.
Instead, you roleplay the non playable characters who inhabit the video game itself. Perhaps mirroring the roleplay in other online spaces like VR Chat, in Grand Theft Auto Online’s roleplay servers people like to play as people working in a restaurant, or perhaps the person behind the gun store counter, and clock in every day like it’s a real job. Most players probably find this idea unusual and wouldn’t try it themselves, but of course, you leave it to the players themselves to find their own fun.
In a new statement on their support blog, Rockstar clarifies that they see roleplay servers as an “extension of community created experiences”. Officially, they do not endorse, approve, authorize or license any of the roleplay servers, or other fan projects, but it’s a statement indicating they intend to allow their players to keep using these servers.
However, they have made it clear they will be taking legal action on specific activities in these servers. These include expected provisions, such as Rockstar Games’ IP, but also a group of items they refer to as commercial exploitation. These include
the sale of “loot boxes” for real-world currency or its in-game equivalent
the sale of virtual currencies
generating revenue via corporate sponsorships or in-game integrations
the use of cryptocurrencies or crypto assets (e.g. “NFTs”)
NFTs continue to be a contentious topic in the industry. In spite of Rockstar’s avowed declaration they don’t want fans messing with NFTs in their game, other companies have not been shy in revealing their NFT plans. These include the biggest companies in the industry, such as Square Enix and Konami. Sony themselves were recently outed to have been working on NFT themselves, but perhaps the most relevant other game and company in this story is Mojang and Minecraft.
Mojang decided to ban NFTs on their servers after discovering how many users and companies were muddling with them on Minecraft. While this hasn’t dissuaded companies from meddling in the space, with one even promising to make their own Minecraft like video game, it’s likely this was a preemptive strike by Rockstar to keep such a situation from even happening on their own game. It’s possible other live service game companies will be releasing statements like this in the future.
Source: Rockstar Games via GamesIndustry.biz