On New Year’s Day, rumors began to circulate around the crypto industry’s social media channels that Fortnite, the world-renowned “Battle Royale” video game that raked in millions upon millions, had begun to accept Monero (XMR) payments on its official merchandise store. After this hearsay circulated, Riccardo Spagni, a leading South African crypto enthusiast and Monero core team member, took to Twitter to explain this industry occurrence.
Spagni, who is part of the “Magical Crypto Friends” podcast, confirmed that XMR payments were accepted on the bonafide Fortnite Store via integration with pro-crypto payment processor GloBee. Referencing the video game, he quipped on Twitter that “now you can purchase that sweet Durrr Burger onesie without your friends, family, or coworkers judging you,” evidently touching on XMR’s privacy features.
Interestingly, with this integration, the payment processor limited cryptocurrency transactions to XMR, even though it accepts payments via Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, Decred, and XRP. When this news broke, a number of crypto enthusiasts took to social media channels to express their excitement, as integration into a facet of Fortnite, a game that attracts millions of viewers on Twitch day-in, day-out, is evidently an optimistic sign.
Many optimists claimed that this integration could spark a newfound bout of adoption for cryptocurrencies, while others (a bit more cynical) noted that Fortnite’s adoption of XMR would push the asset higher, but no the broader market.
Not So Fast, Says Epic Games Founder
While the GloBee integration was successful for a number of days, with preliminary reports indicating that crypto-friendly users actually transacted XMR, Tim Sweeney, the founder of Epic Games, the company behind Fortnite and of its facets, claimed that the acceptance of XMR was “brief” and an “accident.” Through a Twitter thread that garnered traction in the cryptosphere just recently, the preeminent programmer explained that “somewhere along the way” an unnamed one of Epic’s partners enabled the Monero payment option.
Actually, Fortnite’s brief foray into crypto was accidental. We worked with a partner to open a merchandise store, and somewhere along the way Monero payment was enabled.https://t.co/vzmSCMey3T
As such, the option to pay via XMR was quickly shuttered. However, it isn’t all doom and gloom for the cryptocurrency community. Via the medium of the aforementioned Twitter thread, Sweeney went on to reveal that “many of us at Epic (implying that he’s included),” are big fans of decentralized ledger technologies.
And while Epic employees may be believers, Sweeney noted that progress needs to be made on “volatility and fraud-proofing” before bringing the innovation to the public, especially to the younger demographic who frequent their flagship product in Fortnite. He added that in spite of the rumors, Epic doesn’t currently have any official crypto-centric partners, nor plans for a solid foray into this industry.
It isn’t clear what Fortnite foray into the crypto or blockchain world would entail, but if it happens, many optimists in this budding sector believe that it will take the form of a ledger-based token, which would bring the concept of digital assets to the mainstream.