Video game giant Ubisoft continues to expand its reach in the burgeoning NFT gaming space, today joining forces with yet another blockchain network as a validator.

Ubisoft will support the Cronos network, according to an announcement today, and the creator of Assassin’s Creed, Just Dance, and other massive gaming franchises will operate a node on the open-source network that is interoperable with both Ethereum and Cosmos.

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Ubisoft will produce or confirm new blocks on the network as transactions are processed alongside 27 other Cronos blockchain validators, including cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com and infrastructure firm Blockdaemon. More validators typically mean a more decentralized network.

Decrypt reached out to Cronos Labs representatives to ask about the terms of the alliance and whether money changed hands between Ubisoft and the startup behind the Cronos chain, but did not receive an immediate response.

In a post announcing the move, Cronos Labs said that Ubisoft will work alongside the developers to advance blockchain gaming, and they intend to tap the expertise of Ubisoft’s Strategic Innovation Lab.

“We look forward to leveraging their enthusiasm for blockchain technology and being challenged by their team as we progress on the technical and ecosystem roadmap of the Cronos chain,” said Cronos Labs Managing Director Ken Timsit in a blog post. Ubisoft previously served as a mentor to startups participating in the Cronos Accelerator Program in 2022.

Ubisoft’s support of Cronos is just the publisher’s latest move to expand far and wide within the NFT gaming space, following years of prototyping and launching its own blockchain games, supporting various networks and platforms, and even investing in projects.

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The company is currently developing Champions Tactics: Grimoria Chronicles, a tactical role-playing game announced late last month on the Oasys blockchain network.

Previously, Ubisoft launched in-game NFT items on the Tezos blockchain for its Ghost Recon: Breakpoint PC game in late 2021, becoming the first major publisher to integrate NFTs within an existing title. However, the company faced considerable backlash from traditional gaming fans, who decried Ubisoft’s entry into the NFT world.

Ubisoft first began experimenting in the blockchain space in 2018, starting with a Minecraft-like prototype called HashCraft that was never released. Later, the publisher launched a Rabbids-themed NFT experiment, a spinoff of NFT-based fantasy soccer game Sorare, and also put its Rabbids characters into the Ethereum metaverse game The Sandbox.

Along the way, Ubisoft has also supported the Tezos and Hedera blockchain ecosystems by running a validator, along with notable NFT games like Axie Infinity and Sorare and the EOS-based crypto gaming marketplace Ultra. Ubisoft has also assisted numerous crypto and NFT startups through its Entrepreneurs Lab program.

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