- OpenSea, the world’s largest non-financial trading platform, has created a presence in the gaming business.
- It claimed over $10 billion in lifetime sales in 2021, with the vast majority occurring last year.
- With robust chains like Solana and Binance, further functionality might be introduced that directly supports higher-quality games and the potential to cater to thousands/millions of online gamers at any given time in a rich environment.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have been around for over four years, gradually gaining appeal among die-hard cryptocurrency enthusiasts. However, according to NFTGO.io, their entire market capitalization increased from $55 million to more than $7 billion in 2021. 90% of such growth occurred in the previous four months.
OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace, has established a foothold in the gaming industry. It claimed around $10 billion in total lifetime sales in 2021, the great bulk of which occurred last year. This was owing to a $3.4 billion transaction volume in August due to a frenzy for creative NFTs. GameFi is becoming an increasingly important component of OpenSea’s economic strategy.
Regardless of how large that number appears, it pales compared to standalone blockchain-based games. Axie Infinity, an Ethereum-based NFT-focused video game, exceeded $1 billion in total transaction volume in August 2021, arguably the most significant 30-day period in the history of NFTs.
With such widespread interest in NFTs, it’s only logical that developers have begun to build the infrastructure necessary to support what will likely grow to be a vast secondary market for these assets. Additionally, holders desire concrete advantages from their holdings of NFTs, and in the crowded gaming industry, new entrants must differentiate themselves to thrive.
NFT games are anticipated to become more common in 2022, especially since that many cryptocurrency investors possess these assets. And true innovation, not just in NFTs but also in gameplay and dynamics, will be the catalyst.
As NFT gaming enables gamers to make money while playing their favorite games, the sector is socially isolated. The benefit of owning an NFT asset is that it is yours to do with as you like. Three developments are now propelling the popularity of NFT gaming.
AR and VR
It’s a well-known fact that Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are the game industry’s future. We tested this technology with Pokémon Go, but it was only the beginning. While VR and AR provide a far more immersive experience than a 2D screen ever could, we still have a long way to go until the technology is fully operational. Before VR becomes widespread, smartphone-based augmented reality apps are likely to gain traction in specialized industries.
AR enables the incorporation of a physical location via NFTs. As with Pokémon Go, users may interact with an object by visiting a real-world place (in this case, an NFT). Both augmented reality and virtual reality have the potential to make these NFTs a reality. Consider a game where you view, inspect, purchase, and use your NFT. An NFT can take the form of a rifle in a tactical shooter virtual reality game or a set of armor in a medieval virtual reality game.
Ultimately, the success of NFT gaming will be determined by the user experience. When NFTs are integrated into a virtual environment, the understanding will be far more profound than the current frenzy for digital art NFTs. The mix of 3D gameplay with functioning NFTs (bulletproof jackets, firearms, and dogs, for example) will change gaming. However, it will require much creativity to get there ultimately.
Innovative distribution strategies and NFT games
The distribution of incentives is critical to luring players into any ecosystem. The importance of gameplay is second only to ownership and dividends for time spent on a particular platform. Axie Infinity’s popularity is mainly because they are investment vehicles and means of entertainment. Players prefer the play-to-earn (P2E) distribution model since they are adequately paid for their time.
Additionally, some blockchain-based services take this a step further. Gamer’s new “share-to-earn” model provides additional incentives for players. While P2E is a significant improvement over the previous model, it still does not offer gamers enough benefits. The share-to-earn model is an evolution of the play-to-learn approach that has proven successful for many Web3 games.
Gamer’s platform is a cross-chain social network for NFT gamers, providing a convenient method for NFT game creators to engage with their fans and the greater NFT gaming community. With the new share-to-earn approach, group involvement is rewarded, and group activity determines the APY yield on the group’s shares.
Additionally, Gamers establishes a centralized NFT marketplace and platform for holders to buy and trade NFTs. Swipe Swap, a recommendation engine similar to Tinder for NFT collections, analyses gamers’ tastes over time and facilitates the acquisition of new NFTs within the app. In the future, more games may embrace the share-to-earn paradigm, and other incentive schemes will indeed become a part of the NFT gaming ecosystem. Gamers now expect to be compensated fairly.
The Progression: MOBA (Multi-Online Battle Arena)
The multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) gaming genre exploded in popularity. League of Legends, Pokemon, and Mobile Legends receive over a million monthly downloads, and their corresponding markets earn millions of dollars in income for their producers each year. Even though this is possibly the most popular genre of all time, the games continue to remain centralized, and we haven’t seen this business shaken in a long time. DoTA2 (2013) and League of Legends (2009), two of the most popular games, are outdated and need some innovation.
MOBA transformation is upon us, and many blockchain-based MOBAs are positioning themselves to disrupt the market. League of Ancients is one example of a game that reintroduces power to the player. League of Ancients’ (LoA) goal statement is that it aspires to be the most excellent MOBA of all time while recognizing the contributions of past highly successful games.
Compared to other MOBA games from significant producers, LoA is entirely free to play. And, perhaps most crucially, players have the opportunity to make money while having fun. This is in stark contrast to other MOBAs designed to extract as much money as possible from their players. Through combat, players win cash and NFT assets. These materials can be used in-game, including skins that alter the hero’s powers. Through an in-game marketplace, gamers may exchange these assets with other players.
The gameplay of LoA is inspired by two of the most popular MOBA games — Dota 2 and League of Legends. This is characteristic of the business since it takes successful elements from one map or game and adds new components, themes, features, avatars, and revenue methods. LoA will undoubtedly not be the first blockchain-based platform attempting to disrupt the massive MOBA market.
Additional elements that contribute to the success of NFT gaming
Other factors might contribute to the success of NFT gaming. Even in a gaming piece, it’s challenging to overlook the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic. However, gaming has already demonstrated its usefulness since those who have lost occupations can earn money through platforms such as Axie Infinity. Remarkably, gaming has developed into a viable source of funds via NFTs.
The quality of the blockchains upon which NFT games are created should likewise not be overlooked or marginalized. Most successful blockchain games were developed on Ethereum since it was the only platform offering this capability at a reasonable price. With high-powered chains like Solana and Binance, further functionality might be added that directly supports higher-quality games and the capacity to cater to thousands/millions of online players at all times in decadent surroundings. That is until Ethereum receives considerable enhancements.
We are unsure of the bandwidth required for futuristic metaverse games employing advanced NFTs. However, it is safe to assume that it will be enormous. After all, games can only improve at a rate proportionate to the size of the network upon which they are constructed. There is, however, ample potential for good game design, and the issue is more about mass adoption than technological innovation.
An innovation-driven industry, not a profit-driven one
The public desires novelty. The blockchain’s functionality enables a previously unimaginable level of connection and ownership. Introducing these aspects in fresh and unique ways has far-reaching repercussions throughout the business. When someone produces something interesting, that notion is included in five existing projects and ten forthcoming ones. The rise is phenomenal, and ingenuity, not profit or hype, is driving it.