Blockchain has quickly become a buzzword in daily conversation, and it’s inspiring to see how far the technology has come since bitcoin’s debut about a decade ago. Especially for the gaming industry, blockchain has the ability to change both the way we interact and experience games, but also offers the possibility to create new game concepts which were not possible before. Besides that, blockchain gives the ability to create tangible assets players uniquely own, stored in their wallet, secured with a private key — players are in control of the game and its assets.
Players are in control of the game and its assets.
The gaming space is full of younger players with a natural affinity for new technologies. This audience is eager to try out new ideas. Speaking about mass adoption of blockchain, the gaming industry feels like the right place to start (blockchain) innovation.
CryptoKitties has already introduced the first stage of blockchainified games. Its essence boils down to growing virtual kittens and their subsequent resale for Ethereum. Alexander Pavlov explains how the blockchain cats are created, “The CryptoKitties project uses the non-fungible token type ERC-721, which is critical for unique collectibles. If you are wondering who pays for the image of a cat, here is the answer: one who is ready to give $100,000 for a crypto-kitten. The first cat in CryptoKitties was purchased for $115,000, and in total, for one week, users spent almost $3 Million on new Tamagotchi.” (1)
The first cat in CryptoKitties was purchased for $115,000.
This leaves no doubt that people like the new mixture of blockchain and tokenised gaming.
Where is the second gaming revolution?
Tangible Assets — Decentraland
Decentraland is a virtual reality platform powered by the Ethereum blockchain. Within the Decentraland platform, users will be able to create, experience, and monetize content and applications.
The finite, traversable, 3D virtual space within Decentraland is called LAND, a non-fungible digital asset maintained in an Ethereum smart contract. Land is divided into parcels that are identified by cartesian coordinates (x,y). These parcels are permanently owned by members of the community and are purchased using MANA, Decentraland’s cryptocurrency token. This gives users full control over the environments and applications that they create, which can range from anything like static 3D scenes to more interactive applications or games (2).
The content that makes up Decentraland is stored and distributed via the IPFS network while ownership and transactions are validated on the Ethereum blockchain.
MobileGo — The Currency For Game Devs
Generally, when it comes to fiat currencies, it takes game developers and producers quite a bit of time to actually receive the money that they earned through their hard work. It’s not at all uncommon for this process to drag out and take weeks or even months on end.
In addition to the occasionally huge time frames, it’s necessary to take into account that contractors, salaries, and equipment need to be paid off as well. Add the hefty transactional fees and commissions that accompany all fiat based operations on top of the waiting game and you’ve got game developers walking away with way less than what they earned and deserve.
In contrast, utilizing MobileGo (MGO) for payouts is way faster, cost-efficient, secure, and simple in comparison to other commonly used payment methods. Once funds are received, the withdrawal process is as easy as making a few mouse clicks, requires little tech know-how and you’ve got your funds in no more than 20 minutes. The best part? No pesky fees and commissions.
Once the MGO tokens are withdrawn, users are in full control over their assets. They can convert them into popular cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum, Bitcoin, USDT on exchanges that support MGO tokens or swap them directly for fiat currencies.
Game developers and publishers are cashing out their profits on a regular basis via the MGO token. At the moment of writing, more than 12 different game publishers with just below a quarter million dollars volume are using MGO.
As awareness rises, more teams will prefer using MGO tokens replacing fiat currencies. At the current turnover, achieving a 30% rate on Xsolla (platform to buy in-game items) will increase the current MGO volume up to $30 million per month.
eSports Meets Blockchain
Startups are leveraging the benefits of blockchain to deploy smart contracts, fuel betting, host tournaments, and ease the purchase of virtual assets, all of which help grow the eSports ecosystem.
Here’s a brief overview of the most interesting blockchain eSports applications (3).
- FirstBlood is an eSports platform created on the Ethereum blockchain, decentralizes tournament setup and winnings distribution. It allows players to test their skills and to bet on games without being dependent on traditional money transfers, financial regulations, and middleman corruption.
- DreamTeam takes blockchain-powered tournaments one step further by creating a recruitment and management platform for amateur, novice, and pro teams. Blockchain-based smart contracts ensure contractual financial relations for all users without participation of third parties. One function of DreamTeam is to aid the development of small tournaments and secure payments.
- Play2Live platform is a unique combination of interactive features and tools for monetization. This service for the video broadcasting game and cybersport content allows each participant, both streamers and common viewers, to earn (4).
- GamerToken creates a global marketplace for buying and selling unique in-game items on the blockchain. Gamers can finally earn meaningful rewards for in-game activities within a developer-friendly ecosystem.
The Bottom Line
It’s clear the gaming industry is already embracing blockchain technology to assist its second gaming revolution. Multiple blockchain-based projects are already enriching the space, and making it a more safe and fair place. With upcoming technologies like AR and VR, the gaming industry has much in store for the
- How Cryptocurrencies And Blockchain Are Taking Esports To The Next Level — Forbes, Alexander Kokhanovskyy.
- Decentraland.org, project introduction.
- Why Ubisoft is testing blockchain games, YouTube, Nicolas Pouard.
- The Use of Blockchain Technology in Gaming Industry, Alexander Pavlov, UseJournal.