OpenSea NFT Delisting Sparks Retaliatory Move from Game Developers

OpenSea, once a dominant force in the NFT marketplace, has hit turbulent waters.

The platform finds itself metaphorically shipwrecked along the digital shores of the Web3 game OpenSeason. This dramatic turn of events comes after OpenSea made the controversial decision to delist the game’s NFT passes, sparking widespread discussion in the community.

Developer Fractional Uprising Studios tweeted earlier this month that OpenSea’s reasons for delisting OpenSeason passes were “false”.

The studio then took the fight into VR, writing: “we decided to add some more NFT lore to ‘OpenSeason’. What do you think?”

Our friends as @opensea falsely disabled our collection and denied us an appeal.

So we decided to add some more NFT lore to ‘OpenSeason’. What do you think?@opunshizun @EpicGames pic.twitter.com/frgMtrzT5X

— Fractional Uprising Studios (@FU_STUDIOS) February 1, 2024

The attached video shows a ship burning at a port titled “OpenSea”, an unambiguous attack on the titular NFT market.

OpenSeason and OpenSea are not affiliated, although the former admits that its name references the once-biggest NFT marketplace by trading volume.

OpenSea claims the delisting happened as a result of its policies on hosting securities offerings. In effect, OpenSea is indirectly accusing Fractional Uprising of selling securities, a charge OpenSeason denies.

Responding to fans on the thread under its tweet, Fractional Uprising announced tentative plans to open its own marketplace.

We will eventually. There’s quite a bit planned for the project!

— Fractional Uprising Studios (@FU_STUDIOS) February 2, 2024

Customers can still find OpenSeason NFT passes on Blur, the biggest NFT marketplace by trading volume. It is also listed on several other digital collectibles markets.

This week, the Web3 PC game will launch in early access via the Epic Games Store on Thursday, February 29, with the NFT passes serving as tickets into the game’s Fortnite-style battle royale showdowns.

They also give holders access to exclusive in-game skins, items, and airdrop rewards.

OpenSeason’s multiplayer showdowns take place on the “Island of Jpeg”, an island inhabited by popular NFT-inspired avatars, including CryptoPunks, Bored Apes, Miladies, with many more to come down the line.

OpenSea Hit By Dwindling NFT Volume

OpenSea took a huge hit to its operating business when the NFT sector tanked during crypto’s recession. At its height, back in early 2022, the marketplace had staggering $13.3 billion valuation.

A recent valuation by tech-focused asset manager Coatue put OpenSea’s valuation at or below $1.4 billion at the end of last year.

The depreciation mirrors trading activity over the period, which plummeted 96% between January 2022 and January 2024, according to data on Dune Analytics.

Around the same time, OpenSea announced it had laid off 50% of its workforce. In a thread on X, the company said it needed “big changes […] to focus on the next version of our product.”

OpenSea is making some big changes today to focus on the next version of our product.

— Devin Finzer (dfinzer.eth) (@dfinzer) November 3, 2023

At the end of January 2024, reports hit the press that OpenSea is cropping up in acquisition discussions.

CEO and co-founder Devin Finzer is reportedly open-minded to potential deals, including the possibility of getting acquired.

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