A few days ago, the publisher and studio Team 17 launched with great fanfare the MetaWorms, NFTs around its famous license of worms fighters. To make matters worse, these NFTs were offered in collaboration with Coin 4 Planet, a company that uses an eco-friendly process, Refeed Farms, based on compost produced by farmed worms. Despite the “green” label of the operation, it is an understatement to say that the partner studios of Team 17 were not really thrilled.
Quickly, the slingshot took on the appearance of heavy fire. Thus, the SMG (Move Out) studio showed itself with rock clarity – “We don’t want our name associated with NFTs or anything related to cryptos and other blockchains” – soon joined by Ghost Town Games (Overcooked) then by the Navegente studio (Greak: Memories of Azur).
— Navegante – Greak: Memories of Azur is OUT NOW!! (@NaveganteGames)
The harshest words came from studio Aggro Crab (Going Under):“We think NFTs are not environmentally friendly, not helpful, and just a f****** scam. […] Needless to say, we won’t be working with them on any other titles, and we encourage other independent developers to do the same, unless this decision is reversed.”
The threat from indie studios has paid off: Team 17 announced a few hours ago that it was canceling its NFT operation around the Worms franchise:
Team17 is today announcing an end to the MetaWorms NFT project.
We have listened to our Teamsters, development partners, and our games’ communities, and the concerns they’ve expressed, and have therefore taken the decision to step back from the NFT space.
— Team17 (@Team17)
NFTs definitely seem to tickle the financial fiber of publishers, and the reactions of small studios as well as players are managing for the moment to ebb the wave… but for how long?