GameStop NFT Platform’s Layer 2 Plans Sow Confusion

GameStop NFT Platform's Layer 2 Plans Sow Confusion

The Ethereum Layer 2 solution Loopring has announced that it will power the beta of GameStop’s upcoming NFT marketplace. The announcement conflicts with earlier statements from GameStop confirming that Immutable X is creating the company’s NFT trading platform. 

GameStop Readies New NFT Marketplace

GameStop’s NFT marketplace is gearing up for launch—but it’s unclear which Layer 2 project will power it.

For several months, GameStop has been moving forward with plans to launch an NFT marketplace on Ethereum. According to GameStop’s fourth-quarter earnings release, the company had entered into a partnership with Ethereum scaling solution Immutable X to support the development of its upcoming NFT trading platform.

However, a Wednesday announcement from Loopring, another Ethereum scaling solution, has sparked confusion over which company is powering GameStop’s NFT marketplace. In a blog post, Loopring stated that the beta version of GameStop’s new marketplace will be built using its scaling solution.

“The new GameStop NFT Marketplace is built atop the second layer of Ethereum, specifically Loopring L2,” the post states, explaining that the marketplace will inherit Ethereum’s Layer 1 security while vastly reducing gas costs. These statements directly conflict with earlier reports released by GameStop in February, asserting that Immutable X would be creating the marketplace.

To clear up confusion over Loopring’s announcement, Immutable X co-founder and president Robbie Ferguson took to Discord to take questions from the community. He explained that GameStop’s new marketplace would act as an aggregator, with NFTs hosted on Immutable X and Loopring available for trade.

Ferguson stated that he expects the “vast majority of NFT trading on GameStop to take place on Immutable X,” citing several games built using Immutable X’s APIs such as Illuvium and Ember Sword that will be among the first to have their NFTs traded there. “Immutable X continues to be GameStop’s preferred partner, and future games will be developed using Immutable X’s API,” he added. 

Loopring’s involvement in GameStop’s NFT platform took the market by surprise, with the LRC token soaring over 41% on the news. Despite some clues, such as Loopring’s Head of Business Matthew Finestone leaving the company for a position as GameStop’s Head of Blockchain in April 2021, it was widely thought that GameStop’s partnership with Immutable X had ruled Loopring out. 

GameStop’s NFT marketplace is set to go live in the second quarter of 2022 and will include integration with Immutable X and eventually several other Ethereum scaling solutions. 

Disclosure: At the time of writing this piece, the author owned ETH, IMX, and several other cryptocurrencies. 

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