Following the end of its partnership with EA, FIFA has announced that it is working on a portfolio of Web3 games ahead of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. So far, there are four games in development that will utilize blockchain technology.
AI League is a 4-on-4 casual game played between AI-controlled characters and players will act as coaches and offer input at tactical moments. Players can also collect and trade characters between teams.
Uplandme utilizes virtual properties and allows players to travel to a replica FIFA World Cup Lusail Stadium and Village and shop for items to customize their home.
Matchday is a game based on social prediction through the use of cards. Here, players can collect and own Matchday player cards that have the names, images, and likenesses of professional players.
The last one, Phygti, is an app that generates digital rewards. It seems to be an initiative that allows players to capture and eternalize their favorite FIFA World Cup pictures and video moments.
“This is a hugely exciting group of partnerships that we’ve entered into as we embrace a new, digitally-native football fan and engage with them in the spaces that we know they are already active within,” says FIFA Chief Business Officer Romy Gai.
He continues, “As we continue to build our gaming strategy long into future, it’s certain that web 3.0 will have an important role to play, and this marks the start of our journey.”
These are FIFA’s first gaming initiatives since it split from EA back in May. FIFA is planning on releasing new soccer and non-simulation games starting in Q3 2022.
Although blockchain games have been widely scrutinized in the industry, some companies are embracing it, such as Square Enix. The company recently announced Symbiogenesis, an art NFT project, that disappointed fans who thought it was a rumored Parasite Eve revival.
George Yang is a freelance writer for IGN. He’s been writing about the industry since 2019 and has worked with other publications such as Insider, Kotaku, NPR, and Variety.
When not writing about video games, George is playing video games. What a surprise! You can follow him on Twitter @Yinyangfooey