- Following the July launch of its very own NFT marketplace, brick-and-mortar gaming retailer GameStop is doubling down on its Web3 strategy in a new partnership with the crypto exchange platform FTX.
- The partnership aims to funnel GameStop’s growing Web3-savvy customer base toward FTX’s suite of Web3 services, according to GameStop’s official statement — crucially, FTX has an NFT marketplace of its own.
- GameStop also hopes to take this partnership IRL by providing FTX gift cards at select physical branches of the gaming store.
Why it matters
Despite the middling and sometimes overwhelmingly negative reception of GameStop’s NFT marketplace, the gaming retailer’s biggest Web3 foray to date has helped it maintain relevance in the face of an industry-wide shift towards digital game marketplaces. PC gamers understand this shift deeply — an overwhelming majority of laptops and pre-built desktop PCs have omitted the inclusion of disk drives for years. Preceding the launch of GameStop’s NFT marketplace was the release of its own non-custodial crypto wallet, which was the first step in its strategy to onboard its customers to Web3.
But how well has GameStop’s Web3 gamble paid off? The first few days of GameStop’s NFT marketplace saw it rake in more than $7 million in revenue. That figure has ballooned to more than $20 million as of writing. However, sales have seen a recent slump in the marketplace, including a recent 24-hour period that saw the NFT marketplace accrue a mere $4,000 in sales volume, according to a Cointelegraph report from late August.
Despite how Web3 technologies — and NFTs in particular — have long drawn the ire of the mainstream gaming community, gaming is widely regarded as the most likely avenue to onboard the wider public into all things blockchain.
With the blockchain gaming industry currently in flux regarding the discussion on play-to-earn (P2E) vs. play and earn, it might be up to more established gaming players to handle onboarding new users into the Web3 space. With GameStop’s continued commitment to building out its Web3 infrastructures, signs point to that feeling remaining unchanged — at least amongst the gaming retailer’s decision-makers.