What fresh Hellfire is this Stranger Things NFT game?

New Stranger Things poster art for an NFT game
(Image credit: Netflix / Candy)

All is not well in the upside down marketing world of Stranger Things. While Stranger Things season 4 on Netflix has been a hit, fans aren't so keen on the NFT game used to extend its lore. Some of them because it's supported by NFTs, while others just can't excuse the fact it won't work on mobiles.

Developed by Candy, the Stranger Things NFT game enables players to collect new posters of their favourite characters as non-fungible tokens. NFTs are a way to register digital files on a blockchain, in this case the low-carbon Palm token, and so create rarity. You can find out more in our What are NFTs? feature, and even pick up some advice on creating your first NFT with artist Stephen Bliss.

The Stranger Things NFTs are 11,111 unique tokens and show ownership of one of five new digital posters. To earn one of these limited NFTs fans must play a puzzle game set inside a Stranger Things laboratory. 

To date 4,700 players have earned a free NFT poster of Eleven, the first non-fungible token to release. This week a new challenge was released, offering the chance to win a poster of either Mike Wheeler, Jonathan Byers, Will Byers, or Argyle.

Four Stranger Things posters of characters Mike Wheeler, Jonathan Byers, Will Byers, and Argyle

The Stranger Things NFT game gives you the chance to win one of these limited digital posters (Image credit: Netflix / Candy Digital)

Fans of the Stranger Things show haven't exactly fallen in love with the NFT game. When it was announced last week one fan took to Twitter to call the use of NFTs a "grift" (see below) while another questioned: "You think we care about NFTs?" Another simply messaged: "NFTs are a scam." 

It's fair to say the Stranger Things NFT game has failed to impress some core viewers who just wanted a proper video game tie-in. And yet, there's another fail – the Stranger Things NFT game doesn't work on mobiles (yet). It's an odd decision considering most collectors use mobile crypto wallets. I get the show is set in the 1980s but not supporting mobiles in 2022 is really a stretch.

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There's a metaverse element to the Stranger Things NFT game, with clues to solving the puzzles hidden outside of the game itself. The website suggests players "try sleuthing around on the Stranger Things social channels and the Candy Discord for hints".

Despite the backlash from some quarters, other fans of the Netflix fantasy show have been enjoying the game. They've even taken to Twitter to plead for help in solving the puzzles, which I have to say do get kinda, well… strange. 

This isn't the first time Netflix has embraced NFTs. It recently embedded QR codes in episodes of hit animated show Love, Death + Robots so viewers can unlock NFTs as they watch. While Stranger Things fans really (really) don't like NFTs near their beloved show, it doesn't look as if Netflix plans on pressing pause on its use of them any time soon.

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Ian Dean
Editor, Digital Arts & 3D

Ian Dean is Editor, Digital Arts & 3D at Creativebloq, and the former editor of many leading magazines. These titles included ImagineFX, 3D World and leading video game title Official PlayStation Magazine. In his early career he wrote for music and film magazines including Uncut and SFX. Ian launched Xbox magazine X360 and edited PlayStation World. For Creative Bloq, Ian combines his experiences to bring the latest news on AI, digital art and video game art and tech, and more to Creative Bloq, and in his spare time he doodles in Procreate, ArtRage, and Rebelle while finding time to play Xbox and PS5. He's also a keen Cricut user and laser cutter fan, and is currently crafting on Glowforge and xTools M1.