Blockchain, the driving technology behind cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and BNB has yet untapped potential. As cryptocurrency gains more and more traction and popularity, blockchain has paved the way to newer applications using the technology. One of it being Non-Fungible Tokens, or NFTs as a short.
First launched on the Ethereum blockchain back in 2015, the increasing general public interest in cryptocurrency as a whole has more than quadrupled the market value of NFT. The non-fungibility aspect of it means that no two NFTs are the same – each is unique and cannot be reproduced by any means. At the time of this writing, NFTs has seen application in various field and industry such as sports, arts, and most recently, video games.
But how do video games relate to the ever-expanding field of DeFi? How can NFT – and blockchain as a whole – be integrated into video games?
Gaming as a Form of Leisure Economy
Since the internet has become an irreplaceable aspect of our lives, lots of new opportunities to improve our welfare emerged. The internet – with its multitude of content – provided a new way to earn a living. One can earn by publishing their writing on a blog, play video games and stream them to an eager audience on Twitch, or make a living by… eating food and recording it. These professions are the backbone of the so-called leisure economy – serving as entertainment that was born out of leisurely activities.
Video game streamers are entertainers that cater to the interest of the audience for monetary gain. Players in the massively multiplayer online role-playing games such as World of Warcraft farm resources and items to sell or selling their high-level characters to a buyer in exchange for real money. While games that ran on blockchain differs in the sense that their players are given rewards for completing in-game tasks, in the form of NFT.
Play-to-Earn, Not Pay-to-Win
While NFT games have the same basic principle of play, get NFTs, and trade it into cryptocurrency, different games entail different gameplay mechanics in order to earn tokens. Games such as My Neighbor Alice lets you buy a plot of land – complete with the deed – and seeds for cultivation. When the seeds grow and finally reaches maturity, players can harvest them as NFT and trade them for the ALICE token – which in turn can be traded into real money.
In other example, Axie Infinity requires players to spend money upfront to recruit three Axies – the in-game creatures – to their party. They can then go on adventures to defeat other Axies in order to earn XP and potions that could be used to level up their own Axies and trade it for the AXS crypto token respectively.
Will the Bubble Burst?
NFT gaming isn’t yet fully explored, with it being a relatively new implementation on the blockchain. Though the driving force for the success of these games can be attributed to gamification – especially finance gamification – it is a much different beast than the usual gamified project. Gamifying your finances is all about how managing your assets can be a much engaging and fun experience, yet never to actually earn BY playing video games.
As a video game developer with extensive experience in the fields of gamification, Agate had previous experiences in making gamification projects that let users earn, such as Populix and GoPay’s Suwit. These kinds of projects have successfully elevated users’ engagement in its platform by letting them earn real-life rewards, through gamifying the very element of reward gathering itself. From it, we can see that NFT games operate on the same basic principle – yet with a very different design philosophy in mind.
Will we ever see a mainstream application of NFT in video games other than NFT-focused games? It is too early to say, but NFT itself is currently in high demand – with NFT games being one of them. There’s much potential to be harnessed in this emerging trend of NFT games and Agate is ready to jump into it, are you?