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Scammers are impersonating farming sim Coral Island, with added NFTs

Ah, NFTs, that most valuable castaway resource

Halloween might be over, but island farming sim Coral Island appears to have generated a doppelganger on social media that has a hankering for NFTs. Coral Island’s developers Stairway Games have brought attention to the scam account, which uses the real game’s logo and key art but adds an extra web3 cryptobro twist by linking itself to the GameFi blockchain gaming platform. Stairway, as you would, are calling shenanigans.

Coral Island is a slice-of-life indie farming sim.Watch on YouTube

“We are not an NFT game and the page below has no affiliation to Coral Island,” Stairway tweeted, along with an image of the spoofing account. The NFT account only began posting a few days ago but, oddly, was created back in March 2020. Unlike Stairway’s real-world location of Indonesia, the NFT spoofers are, of course, located in the Metaverse. They’ve also set up their own Discord server, Instagram account, and a whole website purporting to be Stairway.

It’s good to see that the scam account has lost 90% of its followers since Stairway posted to alert people, dropping from 2500 to a mere 222 at time of writing. Stairway have been working on Coral Island for years and only launched it into early access a few weeks ago. It’s unfortunate that someone has chosen to target a small indie game like this. Responders to Stairway’s tweet said they’d reported the account to Twitter for impersonation. It isn't the first time something like this has happened, with scammers targeting sci-fi crafting game Outerverse earlier this year.

Alice Bee enjoyed playing the actual game in her Coral Island early access review last month, particularly its handy recyclable trash resource. “The explicitly ecological angle on Coral Island, where the more you provide local produce, and the cleaner you make the seabed, the higher the town's rating goes, will be motivation enough for some people,” she said. “But Coral Island integrates it into how you play, so you'll sort of end up caring about the environment by proxy if not by altruism.”

The real Coral Island is in early access on Steam for £20/$25/€25. It doesn’t contain any NFTs.

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