SELL YOUR CARDS TO WHO: NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS AND DIGITAL TRADING CARD GAMES
Keywords:NFT, Crypto-Art, Digital Games, Trading Cards, Analog Games
AbstractThe remediation of analog trading card games into digital platforms troubles notions of ownership and highlights the flows of capital through the ecologies of TCGs that previously relied on material artifacts. $2 is a digital trading card game that utilizes Non-Fungible Tokens to address concerns over ownership. However, in the wake of the sale of a $69 Million dollar NFT at Christie's art auction, crypto-art has been embroiled in discourse with respect to artist exploitation, environmental, and other concerns endemic to blockchain and cryptocurrency technologies. This paper examines the implications of NFTs in digital card games via the material histories of trading card games and the way digital TCGs accelerate the extraction of capital from player communities by bypassing traditional secondary markets. $2 proposes to solve these issues of ownership and assure players their cards will retain their value. However, the game relies on the continued existence of the publisher's platform, blockchain infrastructure, and player interest. The game also ignores how cards become valuable. Despite mimicking the artificial scarcity associated with TCGs, it does not take into account the impact metagame trends have on the value of cards. By looking at NFT implementations in games such as $2 we can identify several issues with the technology that might otherwise be overlooked in favor of more common critiques. This also highlights several implications remediation and adaptation herald for digital versions of analog games.
How to Cite
Murray, J. A. (2021). SELL YOUR CARDS TO WHO: NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS AND DIGITAL TRADING CARD GAMES. AoIR Selected Papers of Internet Research, 2021. https://doi.org/10.5210/spir.v2021i0.11991