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A new PlayStation NFT patent covers cross-platform usage and trading

A newly published patent shows that Sony Interactive Entertainment has been exploring ways it can use NFTs and blockchain technology in games.

Filed last year and published Thursday, Sony’s patent (via Segment Next) is titled “NFT Framework for Transfer and Use of Digital Assets between Gaming Platforms.”

As recognized herein, in some applications such as computer/video games, an NFT may represent artwork or an asset in a game (such as a character, weapon, or other game asset), but current systems are not technologically appropriate for the owner to use the asset via different games and platforms,” the summary reads.

“Accordingly, as acknowledged herein, game functionality could be enhanced by enabling players and/or spectators to use the asset exclusively and possibly transfer its rights to others via an NFT.”

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One example given is players obtaining a unique skin in a game that can then be used in other titles and even on different gaming platforms.

Such NFTs can also be “transferred to others (for example, sold to others for their value or redeemed),” Sony said.

Another example describes the reward for the first person to defeat a boss in the game “The right to use hunter damage weapons in other games according to your new NFT”.

“As another example, an NFT representing the attainment of a certain level, points and/or the accumulation of points may be minted in a particular video game,” the patent says.

“The NFT may then be transferred to another person, who may then resume the game where the carrier left off in accordance with the NFT so that the transferee begins play at the same level, with the same score, and/or with the same accumulation of points as the transferor.”

A Sony patent filed in May 2021 and published last November first revealed that the company was actively exploring the potential use of NFT and blockchain technology in games.

Last September, the owner of the platform launched a loyalty program called PlayStation Stars, which enables players to earn digital rewards by completing various activities. However, it was quick to distance the software from NFTs, which drew criticism in some quarters due to the formula’s high carbon footprint and what many consider a cynical implementation.

A new PlayStation NFT patent covers cross-platform usage and trading

“They’re definitely not NFTs,” Grace Chen, PlayStation’s vice president of network advertising, loyalty and licensed merchandise, told The Washington Post. “Of course not. You can’t trade or sell them. They don’t take advantage of any blockchain technologies and certainly aren’t NFTs.”

Game companies that have launched NFT projects or are considering doing so include Square Enix, Ubisoft, Konami, and Sega.