Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The blockchain-based gaming space is rapidly expanding, thanks to the rise of NFTs and in-game currencies. Growth in this area can be seen as a continuation of decades of constant iterations of the gaming industry’s monetization strategies and business models.

The rise in global interest in video games and NFTs has been a huge catalyst over the past few years. Globally, the number of video game players is rapidly approaching 3 billion, with an expected compound annual growth rate of 5-7% over the next few years. Meanwhile, NFT sales surpassed $15 billion for the first time in 2021. In fact, secondary market sales of NFTs in blockchain games account for 20% of total NFT sales—many smaller games consistently generate tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue.

While the “Metaverse” is still vague, it’s clear that gaming has an important place in the virtual world. Virtual world games like Decentraland and The Sandbox have generated nearly $500 million in NFT sales (including virtual land and in-game assets). In 2021, NFT sales in the virtual world will grow the fastest, with a transaction value of more than $320 million. As the Metaverse is better understood, some parts of this new digital experience (i.e. the Metaverse) may utilize blockchain as a core part of the infrastructure — and as blockchain infrastructure continues to expand, This is more likely to happen to meet the needs of developers and consumers.

This report will delve into the growth of the three categories of the global gaming industry, NFT market, and blockchain gaming. While the blockchain gaming industry is still in its infancy, understanding these trends will give us insight into the future of gaming.

Introduction to Blockchain Games

Like its fictional characters, the gaming industry is constantly evolving. The industry is on the verge of disrupting traditional models to adapt to changing market demands.

Take, for example, the evolution of gaming business models. The first mainstream game featured a “Pay-to-Play” system.As far as we can remember, these games were mostly arcade games in the mall, games on CDs in the computer, or games that were later downloaded directly to the machine. The advantage of pay-to-play games is simple: you only pay once, and you can keep playing.

Following the paid model, the “Freemium Model” came into being. In the age of this model, players no longer have to pay to start playing. Instead, game merchants make money by making players pay to unlock additional components of the game, or, more commonly, making in-game purchases such as expansion packs, platform subscriptions, and character skins. For many, freemium games have lowered the barriers to entry for games, and the shift to freemium games has helped grow the number of players worldwide.

This brings us to today, where the next monetization revolution in the gaming industry is about to begin: blockchain gaming. The blockchain gaming space has also acquired names like GameFi or Play-to-Earn, which represent a new monetization model for this gaming era. Blockchain games often feature NFTs or other forms of tokenized assets as game content that can be exchanged for other cryptocurrencies (or fiat currencies) on a blockchain-based marketplace.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The development process of the profit revolution in the game industry: the era of paid games → the era of freemium games → the era of blockchain games (players have ownership of in-game assets)

The core idea of ​​this revolution is that players should have ownership of the content (in-game assets) they earn, or at least more ownership in the digital world where they spend a lot of time and money. This yields two immediate advantages: (1) the lifespan of in-game assets is extended as those assets continue to exist in the player’s wallet, even after the game is closed; (2) the interoperability and composability of assets Properties enable them to interact with other games, applications or blockchains.

Interoperability between different blockchains allows players to lend out their in-game assets, transfer them to another application, or gain access to real-world events. Additionally, blockchain has the potential to provide players with the ability to buy, sell, trade and create in-game assets securely and efficiently using fiat or cryptocurrencies, while the grey secondary market of traditional games can be rife with fraud and many emerging The market lacks a payment infrastructure that allows players to seamlessly conduct game-related transactions.

While blockchain games can be a new source of revenue for game studios, it’s important to be reminded that the blockchain world is not without its own flaws. For example, the recent launch of Ubisoft Quartz, an in-game NFT marketplace by French video game publisher Ubisoft, has been questioned by fans, leading to the cancellation of Ubisoft’s plans to include NFTs in its new game, Tom Clancy Ghost Recon Breakpoint. This comes after the popular gaming community Discord encountered similar resistance after hinting at an integration with Ethereum.

The main reasons behind the community boycott are the sustainability of this game model, an unclear user value proposition, and the frequent occurrence of “Rug Pulls” scams (i.e. some cryptocurrency projects trick users into investing by wrapping themselves up and then immediately run away with the money). ) Wait. Many, if not all, of these concerns could be avoided or alleviated if projects could launch their products more thoughtfully alongside market education, and Twitter recently introduced the ability to allow paying users to set NFTs as their profile picture , and forays into NFTs such as Adidas show an encouraging path forward for platforms and IP owners.

Global Game Market

Gaming is one of the most popular sources of entertainment, and it’s still expanding. Major franchises such as Fortnite and League of Legends now operate in global pop culture. For example, Fortnite has partnered with Marvel Studios, Star Wars, and John Wick of the film industry, with Ariana Grande, Neymar, and other influential celebrities, and with popular brands such as Balenciaga, Ferrari, and Air Jordan brand cooperation. On the other hand, the international sports leagues hosted by League of Legends attract millions of fans.

Anecdotes aside, we cannot assess the global gaming market without considering the past two years. In 2020, the lockdown caused by the Covid-19 outbreak has been a strong catalyst for the industry. Those who have become gamers find themselves having more time to play the games they love. Meanwhile, those who don’t play games find themselves having time to try new hobbies. As a result, global gaming revenue grew by 15% in 2020. Mobile games, PC games and handheld games have all grown with the development of mobile phones, with an annual growth rate of 26%.

Unfortunately, businesses face a different situation in 2021. The long-term effects of the pandemic are starting to highlight unexpected secondary effects in the global gaming market. Disruptions to manufacturing, shipping and logistics processes have hampered the launch of next-generation consoles, and PC hardware has faced chip shortages and delays in other high-end components. While interest in gaming continued to increase in 2020, both the PC and console markets saw slight declines in 2021 compared to 2020, with mobile the only sector to see growth due to supply chain disruptions and intense competition. As shown below:

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: Changes in annual revenue generated in the gaming sector since 2018.

There are forecasts that the gaming industry will return to previous levels of growth once the impact of Covid-19 subsides.The gaming industry is forecast to reach $269 billion by 2025, a 53% increase from the most recent figures. Over the next three years, these numbers are in line with the 15% compound annual growth rate seen in recent years, driven by continued post-pandemic changes in consumer behavior and new monetization models enabled by streaming and professional esports.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: Growth in the number of global gamers (in billions) since 2015, with nearly 3 billion global gamers in 2021.

Meanwhile, the total number of gamers worldwide in 2021 is expected to be close to 3 billion, with 55% coming from the Asia-Pacific region. The main factors driving the growing user base remain the expanding internet population, better network infrastructure and easier access to smartphones.

The three drivers above remain solid in the near term, but as more users come online and user growth slows in regions such as the Middle East, Africa and Latin America, exploring new ways to increase users will be of interest to many companies. of. Blockchain games and their new token-based monetization models present a unique opportunity for game developers to generate more average revenue per user, expand their user base, and explore new revenue streams.

NFTs: Game Changers

NFTs serve as a core primitive for blockchain assets and serve as a key value proposition for various blockchain games.NFTs in blockchain games provide various benefits to games, including asset ownership, asset programmability, and new opportunities for incentivization (players) and innovation.

  • asset ownership

In traditional games, in-game assets are controlled and owned by the game developer, and are effectively rented out to players. In contrast, in blockchain games, players have real ownership of their in-game digital assets, whether it is in-game currency or uniqueness such as skins, account names, in-game virtual land or other assets asset.

  • Asset Programmability

Because NFTs are essentially software on a blockchain network, these assets can be programmed with various properties, or built with in-game utility. For example, NFTs can be designed as assets that can only be acquired when players reach a certain identity, or programmed for many other unique use cases.

  • Inspiration & Innovation

Game developers are already one of the most knowledgeable groups when it comes to incentives. NFTs provide an additional layer of economic incentives, allowing players to earn revenue-generating assets, inject real economic value into game assets, and build a stronger game economy through in-game currency and NFT markets.

Since the blockchain network is permissionless, this opens the door for developers to innovate. By using NFTs, a single asset class can be automatically licensed to other companies or used in other games. For example, the fantasy football NFT game Sorare has licensed its NFTs to other game developers such as Ubisoft.

In addition, NFTs have also opened up new forms of profit. For example, NFTs issued by game companies can earn royalties from all secondary sales, creating new revenue streams for digital asset distribution companies; game companies can choose to vertically integrate their own NFT marketplaces and campaigns in games (such as Axie Infinity Games have its own NFT marketplace), or integrate with third-party platforms like OpenSea.

  • Growth of NFTs: Analyzing the Secondary Market

In 2021, NFT secondary market sales across multiple blockchain networks will total over $15 billion (see chart below), with Ethereum leading the way in NFT transactions. However, the increase in transaction costs on the Ethereum network has paved the way for other new blockchain and L2 scalability solutions such as Solana, Ronin, ImmutableX, Polygon, etc.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Every blockchain network or L2 network has its own set of tradeoffs including scalability, existing infrastructure, users and security, etc. As a result, different game developers choose to build games on different blockchains for different reasons: a game that needs more scalability might choose a blockchain platform like Solana, and want to use Ethereum Game developers with existing network effects may opt for solutions such as Polygon, ImmutableX or other Ethereum scalability solutions.

August 2021 was the peak monthly activity for 2021, with NFT secondary market sales exceeding $4.5 billion for the month. As shown below:

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

While the final months of 2021 are still behind the August peak, it is important to realize that the secondary market for NFTs is still several times higher than it was at the beginning of 2021. As more applications and markets integrate various forms of tokens, including NFTs, the NFT secondary market will be poised to retest the levels seen in August 2021.

Note that the charts above represent secondary sales, which are sales from one person to another. As such, these figures exclude the game company’s initial sale of NFTs to the first buyer, a transaction that could generate meaningful earnings for the game company. Secondary sales of in-game NFT assets are a useful indicator of the health of the overall NFT market and individual games. Growth in secondary sales may translate into a stronger game economy, and since each sale of an NFT series typically provides a perpetual royalty to the company, a healthy secondary market also directly translates to increased revenue for NFT issuers.

Data shows that Axie Infinity is the clear leader in secondary NFT sales, with the vast majority of transactions taking place on its sidechain, Ronin. More recently, Parallel Alpha, another strategy card game, has grown rapidly in recent months, in part due to its interesting sci-fi backstory and intellectual property. Overall, there are several successful blockchain games that have achieved sales of over $100 million in secondary NFT sales across multiple blockchain networks, indicating which platform is best for blockchain gaming There is still no clear consensus.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: NFT secondary sales of games on various blockchain networks, data as of January 4, 2022

It is also worth mentioning that the most successful blockchain games today are mainly card games, while the current gaming industry prefers sandbox games, massively multiplayer online games, and games with more robust gaming experiences.

Currently, blockchain games have not yet reached a stage of development that can simultaneously support complex gameplay and economic primitives such as NFTs. Over time, however, advancements in blockchain technology and user experience — including improvements released over the next year — will open the door to higher-powered games running on blockchain networks.

Blockchain game landscape

As the blockchain gaming industry gains momentum, so does the gaming infrastructure stack, becoming an ecosystem of studios, games, and critical infrastructure. As shown below:

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Let’s analyze the various aspects of the blockchain gaming space listed in the chart above.

game guild

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Guilds are no strangers to blockchain games. However, by combining with DAOs (Decentralized Autonomous Organizations) and games, these guilds are able to absorb and distribute funds, creating entirely new models of game monetization and user acquisition. Well-funded gaming guilds like Yield Guild Games (YGG), GuildFi, and Merit Circle all earn a portion of the game rewards by sponsoring players of a large number of blockchain games such as Axie Infinity.

blockchain game

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The biggest layer in the blockchain gaming field is the game itself. So far, there are a variety of game types. Some of the most successful categories include trading card games (like Axie Infinity), MMORPGs (like DeFiKingdoms), virtual worlds (like The Sandbox and Decentraland), and sports games (like Sorare).

With the development of blockchain games, dominant games will emerge in various fields. However, many games are currently still in development and may take months or years to be fully developed.

market

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

As games issue assets in the form of NFTs, general-purpose NFT marketplaces like OpenSea, Rarible, etc., as well as blockchain-specific NFT marketplaces like Metaplex, VIVE, and Magic Eden, drive NFT transactions. In addition, some game infrastructures provide their own NFT marketplaces, for example, Enjin provides NFT marketplaces for games developed based on the Enjin SDK.

The launchpad for blockchain games

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Some Launchpads in the blockchain gaming space can effectively help emerging game developers raise funds for game development. Typically, these launchpads raise funds for specific gaming ecosystems (such as Polkastarter for the Polkadot ecosystem, and Magic Eden for the Solana ecosystem). Typically, these launchpads can be funded through an Initial DEX Offering (IDO) or a Liquidity Bootstrapping Pool (LBP), each of which enables an initial sale of tokens.

game development infrastructure

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Game development infrastructures like Forte and Enjin often have APIs and SDKs that allow game developers to quickly integrate NFTs or other crypto-economic activities. For game developers, building the entire blockchain infrastructure required for a game from scratch can be daunting and time-consuming. Just as blockchain developers leverage existing smart contract tools and wallet infrastructure, game developers can leverage blockchain game development software (such as Stardust, Enjin, and Forte) that support modular components such as wallets , asset issuance, payment and other basic functions.

L2 infrastructure

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The NFT bull market in 2021 has resulted in increased L2 (Layer 2 network) investment in the gaming ecosystem. For example, Axie Infinity chose vertical integration and developed its own Ethereum sidechain Ronin and decentralized exchange Katana. Other game development platforms have also opted for horizontal integration, such as Enjin winning a parachain slot for its NFT-only chain Efinity in the recent Polkadot parachain auction.

Nonetheless, many existing games are still working on existing network effects based on Ethereum, using Starkware (like NFT fantasy football game Sorare), ImmutableX (like NFT card game Gods Unchained), Polygon (like NFT horse racing game Zed Run) ) and other Ethereum-based L2 schemes to meet the scalability needs of these games.

L1 infrastructure

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The L1 (Layer 1 Blockchain Network) infrastructure is the core foundation of various protocols and applications. While some games are built on L1 blockchains with higher throughput (such as Solana and Flow), most Ethereum games have migrated to L2 solutions. The importance of L1 comes from the fact that blockchain games will leverage other composable protocols on L1, including guilds, financialization protocols (such as NFTX), identity solutions (such as the Ethereum domain name service ENS), marketplaces, and other applications or services .

game studio

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Game studios are at the base layer because they are usually game developers and developers of L1 and L2 infrastructure.Dapper Labs (which developed well-known NFT projects such as CryptoKitties and NBA Top Shot), Sky Mavis (which developed Axie Infinity games) and Animoca Brands (whose blockchain games include The Sandbox and Crazy Kings, etc.) Wealthy game developer. Ultimately, not all game studios will survive. However, the companies that develop the next blockbuster game have the potential to be the next Electronic Arts in the future.

Blockchain games gain broad interest

The first blockchain games were created in late 2017, but it wasn’t until recently that NFTs gained mainstream attention that the space had significant user engagement. With games like Axie Infinity and mainstream NFT collectibles like NBA Top Shot gaining popularity, blockchain-based games are now on the verge of widespread adoption.

User metrics

While blockchain gamers are only a fraction of the world’s 3 billion gamers, DappRadar recently released data showing that October 2021 was the first month with over 1 million unique daily active wallets interacting with decentralized gaming apps . This number is up nearly 300% compared to 4 months ago, when the same metric showed only 350,000 wallets interacting with these games.

There is also an upward trend in the number of monthly NFT buyers for blockchain games (see chart below). So far, most blockchain games have required players to own NFTs, which places an initial capital burden on players like buying a console. While this mode is still the most popular today, there may be more blockchain games trying the free-to-play mode in the future.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: Changes in the number of monthly NFT buyers for several major blockchain games.

follow the money

In addition to using the number of wallets interacting with blockchain games as an indicator of game adoption, another important metric to track is venture capital. Capital investment reflects many things: it reflects VC funding’s interest in the industry; to a certain extent, it also reflects the ambitions of entrepreneurs in the field; and to a greater extent, it reflects those who challenge the status quo existing resources. It is necessary for us to analyze the changes in the financing environment in the blockchain game field in the past year.

Not surprisingly, the VC funding metric further highlights the growth of the blockchain gaming space. Compared to 2020, total VC investment in blockchain gaming and ecosystem infrastructure will increase by more than 100 times in 2021.Compared to 2018, the increase is still about 40 times. As shown below:

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: Growth in blockchain gaming venture funding since 2017.

Venture capital in blockchain gaming in 2021 is in stark contrast to previous years, with multiple businesses raising more money than previous years combined. Examples of this include Forte, a blockchain game development platform in partnership with numerous game studios. Perhaps notable in this data are the various products and services in this funding list: game studios, infrastructure/tools, and other components of the game stack, including NFT marketplaces and many L1 blockchains and L2 networks.

In addition to funding amounts, sources of funding have changed over the past year – VC funds focused on cryptocurrencies are no longer the only source of funding: funds investing in this space over the past year include Traditional tech funds such as Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and Lightspeed Partners, as well as hedge funds with a proven track record in growth investing, notably Tiger Global and Coatue Management.

Going forward, these three VC funds (especially the latter two new entrants) should continue to bring new capital to the blockchain gaming ecosystem.

Developer Program

Additionally, a recent study of 157 developers in the US and UK found that 72% of respondents are considering integrating blockchain technology into their games, while 58% plan to do so within the next 12 months . At the same time, 47% of participants have already used NFTs in their games, underscoring the great interest from game developers.

While game developers see new opportunities, it’s important to reiterate that the technology behind these types of games is still in its infancy. Additionally, current challenges around blockchain (such as transaction costs, throughput speed, and scalability) limit blockchain game play to turn-based, card-collecting games rather than AAA issued by high-budget studios Live-action and 3D graphics for advanced games.

Blockchain Gaming Case Study

In the following chapters, we will look at the development of three popular blockchain games, their models, and their impact on the blockchain gaming ecosystem.

Axie Infinity

As the most popular blockchain game to date, Axie Infinity has accumulated over $3.5 billion in revenue from its NFT marketplace. The game is similar to Pokemon: players own and breed NFT digital pets called Axies that can be used to complete adventures (user versus environment) or fight other Axie pets in the Axie Infinity game ( user to user) and get token rewards.

Successful battles will result in token rewards that can be exchanged for real-world currency. Axie Infinity has spawned global adoption of the “play and earn” business model. It is estimated that 40% of the game’s players in the Philippines alone can earn upwards of $500 a month from the game. Axie Infinity’s gameplay revolves around two crypto tokens: the Smooth Love Potions (SLP) token and the Axie Infinity Shard (AXS) token.

SLP Tokens: SLP tokens are more widely used for practical purposes in the game and grant SLP holders the ability to breed new Axie pets. This breeding process involves using two existing Axie pets and burning SLP tokens to generate a new Axie pet. SLP tokens can be earned through regular gameplay, purchased on the secondary market, or through promotions.

AXS Token: AXS Token is the governance token for the Axie Infinity game. Those who own AXS tokens can stake the tokens in the network to earn income. AXS tokens are also the currency used in the game’s NFT marketplace.

Axie Infinity’s protocol revenue comes from several fee mechanisms: the first fee mechanism is its NFT market fee, which is a percentage of its NFT market transactions; the other main source of revenue is players breeding new in-game Breeding fees paid when Axie pets. There are also two smaller revenue streams including in-game land sales and original sales of first-generation Axie pets.

Collectively, the agreement generated more than $1.3 billion in revenue from these four sources, almost all of which occurred after June 2021. The timing coincides with the launch of its own sidechain, Ronin, by Sky Mavis, the studio behind the game, which could help lower transaction costs for users and boost the game’s popularity.

The breakdown of revenue seems to support this conclusion. Over 99% of cumulative earnings come from activity on the Ronin network. The Ethereum network accounted for just 0.19% of the $1.3 billion in revenue, which included land sales and sales of the first-generation Axie, both of which were unavailable on the Ronin network. So, the 99%+ revenue generated by Ronin is another indicator that the protocol is generating incredible revenue from just breeding fees and NFT market fees.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: A breakdown of Axie Infinity protocol revenue.

The chart below shows the protocol’s revenue growth in the second half of 2021. Surprisingly, revenue from the protocol began to decline in the final weeks of 2021. Possible explanations include the recent damage caused by Typhoon Rai in the Philippines (where 40% of users live), or a shift in interest in other blockchain games with updated gameplay.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

While Axie Infinity’s float market cap has fallen in recent weeks amid slowing earnings growth, rough benchmarks suggest the game is still comparable to many pure-play studios. Notably, this approach compares a single game (i.e. Axie Infinity) to a game studio with multiple games, providing further evidence of how big the game is.

While Axie Infinity lags behind Nintendo, Activision Blizzard and Electronic Arts, industry giants with triple-A game studios, it is closer to several others. In the benchmarks below, Axie Infinity’s market cap is similar to Ubisoft, creator of famous games like Assassin’s Creed and the Tom Clancy franchise.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: The market capitalization of major video game companies, it can be seen that Axie Infinity’s market capitalization is close to that of Ubisoft.

Sorare

Just like fantasy sports, Sorare, the NFT fantasy football card game, offers players the opportunity to combine real-world sports with digital gaming — only this time with the addition of blockchain technology. It’s like using NFT cards as collectibles in FIFA Ultimate Team. Sorare’s gameplay has so far been limited to soccer, though the company most recently raised $680 million last September to support its continued expansion.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: First-time buyers (purple) and repeat buyers (black) of Sorare NFT as a percentage of its total buyers since January 2021.

Sorare tracks real-world football statistics, rewarding players who hold NFT cards of high-level athletes. The nature of the game naturally appeals to a wide range of football fans. As the chart above shows, first-time buyers of Sorare NFTs increased significantly in the second half of 2021. In December 2021, the monthly unique buyers of Sorare NFT exceeded 20,000 for the first time. The data here needs to explain that, unlike Axie Infinity, Sorare players do not need to buy NFTs to start playing the game. This could mean that the total number of Sorare players exceeds the number of people making secondary NFT purchases.

Sorare is one of the most successful cases of NFT and cultural fusion to date. The participation of influential football leagues, including some of the world’s most popular leagues such as the English Premier League, Spanish La Liga and Europe’s top Champions League, and their willingness to Lending its own brand to a blockchain game heralds more such games in the future.

DeFi Kingdoms

Another blockchain game, DeFi Kingdoms, is quite similar to the popular online classic Runescape. Players of the latter may feel nostalgic for the game’s avatars interacting with each other in a retro pixel art world. Unlike Axie Infinity or Sorare, DeFi Kingdoms’ gameplay doesn’t revolve around collecting cards and using them to fight. Instead, the game includes heroes, quests, classes, and a wider range of actionable activities such as mining, gardening, farming, and fishing. The roadmap for this game is very ambitious. Its future gameplay will allow heroes to join guilds, engage in P2P battles, hatch pets, and more. Involving heroes in these various missions increases the chances of players accumulating tradable resources on the blockchain marketplace.

As its name suggests, DeFi Kingdoms blends gaming elements with DeFi (decentralized finance) and focuses more on DeFi than many of its predecessors. The game includes a decentralized exchange, liquidity staking, and native NFT marketplaces—all of which exist in the crypto ecosystem, but not traditionally in blockchain games. In fact, the team behind the game took the opposite approach to Axie Infinity: DeFi Kingdoms didn’t start with the game, but with traditional liquidity mining incentives and developed over time.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: TVL (Total Locked Value) growth of the DeFi Kingdom protocol on the Harmony chain.

DeFi Kingdoms has chosen to run on the Harmony blockchain. Regarding the launch of DeFi Kingdom on the Harmony network, it is worth noting the sheer dominance of the project on the Harmony blockchain network. DeFi Kingdom owns roughly 68% of the total value locked (TVL) in the Harmony network, a much larger share than the two major DEXs active on the network, namely SushiSwap and ViperSwap. DeFi Kingdoms is also expected to launch on the Avalanche blockchain in the coming months.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

Above: DeFi Kingdoms user growth since launch.

DeFi Kingdoms usage data seems to support the idea that the game is gaining user interest. Since the game’s launch, its daily user count has been trending upwards (pictured above). In early December 2021, the game announced that it would be expanding onto the Avalanche chain, launching a new world called Crystalvale. The news came on the same day that DEXs on Avalanche (such as Trader Joe and Pangolin) announced that they would immediately begin providing liquidity for DeFi Kingdoms’ new game token on the Avalanche chain; days later, the game was active on Harmony The number of users rose by 64%, and then there was some rebound. In the following two weeks, transaction volume also increased by 29%.

Metaverse

From a broader perspective, many of the changes in gaming echo another major technological trend: the Metaverse.Maybe the Metaverse has touched your life – not too long ago, Facebook strategically renamed itself Meta – but if not, chances are it will in the next few years.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The upper bar chart shows the sentiment ratio of different countries towards the Metaverse (blue indicates positive sentiment, purple indicates negative sentiment)

The definition of the Metaverse remains somewhat unclear, in part because the concept itself remains largely hypothetical.At its foundation, the Metaverse represents a collection of virtual worlds (including AR, VR, and 2D worlds) in which we can communicate with each other digitally. But as it stands, there are multiple virtual worlds co-existing, their ecosystems are fragmented, and competition among these virtual worlds is fierce.

Whatever the final form of the Metaverse, opportunities for integration within the game are largely unexplored. The Metaverse broadens the scope of the game by unlocking new types of intellectual property, experiences and behaviors. An early example was Worldwide Webb, an interoperable massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG).Worldwide Webb allows users to import their own NFTs into the game as digital identities, marking the first time NFTs cross-application interoperability has emerged in a blockchain-powered digital world.

Dominance of the virtual world

Since Decentraland’s ICO (Initial Coin Offering) in August 2017, virtual worlds have been considered a potential application for the Metaverse. These virtual worlds are designed as sandbox games (like Minecraft, Roblox, etc.) where players can buy and build their own assets and socialize with other players.

Currently, the top four Metaverse virtual worlds are The Sandbox, Decentraland, Somnium Spaces and Cryptovoxels, all of which allow users to purchase scarce digital land, many of which also use their own virtual currency (such as The Sandbox uses of SAND tokens).

So far, some of these virtual worlds have gained notoriety for specific use cases. For example, Cryptovoxels users created 3D art studios, and Decentraland provides casinos and digital offices for various crypto companies.

To date, the virtual world has generated nearly $500 million in NFT sales (including NFT virtual lands and in-game assets).Virtual worlds will see the fastest growth in NFT sales in 2021, generating over $320 million in NFT sales. As shown below:

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The Sandbox is far ahead of other virtual worlds with over $235 million in NFT sales. Additionally, Decentraland and The Sandbox saw NFT sales increase by 490% and 739%, respectively, in Q4 2021.

Interpretation of the blockchain game industry: insight into the future of games

The virtual world has experienced more and more speculation as awareness of the Metaverse has grown. At the end of the day, these apps are still in their infancy, still building content for players and trying to find their niche (eg social, gaming) among potential users.

The unique value propositions of blockchain networks—asset ownership, permissionless innovation, incentivized design, and programmability—are likely to ensure that these protocols will support the Metaverse as a base layer, or as a platform for secondary and tertiary applications and services. critical part of the infrastructure.

Summarize

Over the past year, it’s undeniable that blockchain gaming has experienced a watershed moment — a historic shift upon which future development depends. The perception of blockchain gaming has changed due to the success of games like Axie Infinity, the explosion of secondary sales of NFTs, the widespread growth of crypto users, and more precisely, the expansion of blockchain gaming users. This, in turn, has fostered further funding for various core infrastructure in the blockchain gaming space, as well as many new games and studios.

The Metaverse’s tailwinds also benefit the gaming industry, which accounts for a large portion of online activity today, and could be an important area of ​​growth and user acquisition for companies established in the Metaverse.

Blockchain ecosystems such as Ethereum are developing at an increasing rate, but scalability challenges and user experience issues remain. Still, there are many teams developing solutions for users and game developers to enhance the experience of building and playing blockchain games. While a common monetization model in blockchain gaming has yet to emerge, experiments around issuing NFTs, vertical markets, in-game currencies, and other cryptoeconomic primitives still hold bright promise.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/interpretation-of-the-blockchain-game-industry-insight-into-the-future-of-games/
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