Crypto Gaming Explained: Why Play Crypto Games?
Boom… Bam… Eeep… Zoom… Winner!
Ahh, the lovely sounds of game play. Even if you are not a hardcore gamer, you have probably been in the same room while a console or PC is turned on. It would not be surprising if your brother, sister, nephew, or friends have ample experience playing, creating, or sharing video games.
Video games come in all different genres, age ratings, and price points that draw various demographics to the gaming industry each day. Some games are meant for fun, some for exploring, while others exist to rescue or protect someone from harm. Other games are created specifically to inflict harm on others through an intense war situation for example.
Since gaming is a global phenomenon, it boasts a handful of staggering statistics. According to Grand View Research, over $195B in revenue was generated by the global video game market in 2021. By the end of 2022, the revenue number is predicted to climb up to around $220B, conservatively.
Investopedia reports more than 2 billion gamers across the world, amounting to roughly 26% of the global population. Gaming is an even bigger industry than movies and music combined.
Gaming is expected to get much more immersive in the next 10 years and beyond with the introduction of the metaverse, drawing even more attention to an already booming market. What is it about crypto games that draws such trending attention?
“One of the most difficult tasks men can perform, however much others may despise it, is the invention of good games.”
― Carl Jung
Crypto gaming benefits
Just like with traditional video games, crypto games can be beneficial in terms of player-to-player interaction and various levels of problem-solving involved. Crypto games offer 2 main benefits to the player that serve as an incentive mechanism and are possibly more effective than traditional means.
· Crypto rewards
In the past, traditional video games such as Mario Brothers or Sonic the Hedgehog, offered rewards in the form of points that didn’t really amount to anything. The more points you acquired, the higher your score became, but there wasn’t a real reward except for possibly extra lives.
With the genesis of crypto gaming, there now exists built-in incentive mechanisms where players can engage in what’s called, Play-to-Earn. Play-to-Earn games are free games that pay you in the form of collectibles or cryptocurrency upon completing certain in-game activities.
With the introduction of blockchain technology, and developers incorporating it into their game programming, came the ability to take real ownership of your in-game assets. For instance, Splinterlands, a top crypto game, allows players to own the cards they purchase or trade. The acquisition of the card is uniquely recorded on the blockchain, never to be removed or altered. The player can then take those cards and use them to play, trade, or sell whenever they like.
Another form of ownership in crypto gaming are NFTs, or non-fungible tokens. Essentially, a non-fungible token is a unique token, or asset on the blockchain that only you own (unless you trade or sell it). The token is non-fungible, meaning that it can’t be replicated or replaced like cash or stocks can. Each NFT has its own properties and is only held by 1 owner at a time. Which crypto games utilize NFTs and/or crypto rewards to their users?
Top crypto games
Crypto games, and the gamers who play them, are the glue that hold the crypto gaming industry together. As in the traditional gaming world, some games are more popular than others for various reasons. Below are 3 of the top crypto games currently available to play and start earning real rewards and take ownership of your assets.
Axie Infinity by Sky Mavis is a virtual world full of fierce, adorable pets called Axies. Axies can be battled, collected, and even used to earn cryptocurrencies. The game has been known to have a Pokemon-like feel to it as players breed, raise, battle, and trade Axie characters. But, unlike Pokemon, the amount of Axies that can be created are essentially limitless due to the various combinations available.
The Axie Infinity world is a play-to-earn realm with the help of AXS tokens, or Axie Infinity Shards, used as a game reward incentive and for governance voting.
Decentraland encourages players to create, explore, and trade in a virtual world owned by the users. With Decentraland, you can create your own scenes and artwork, as well as acquire and maintain digital assets such as land, outfits, and character names. Decentraland is controlled exclusively by the DAO, owning the most important smart contracts and assets of the virtual world.
The game utilizes the MANA token which can be used to purchase plots of land or various goods and services within the marketplace.
The Sandbox is a virtual realm that enables players to create their own world on land they acquire. Users have the ability to play, build, own, and monetize the world they engage with. The Sandbox uses SAND token to buy and sell land and various assets within the metaverse.
The Sandbox has partnered with big brands from across the world such as Adidas, Atari, Snoop Dogg, and Roller Coaster Tycoon. Owning land in the metaverse is a big deal as it enables you to live, earn, and grow with opportunities you may not have access to normally.
Splinterlands is a game previously introduced on the Steem blockchain, and now being ran on the Hive network. This game has NFT written all over it in the form of collectible cards where users can buy, sell, trade, or battle their character cards against one another.
Each card is paired with a unique identifier making it impossible to duplicate. If someone happens to be a big fan of Yu-gi-oh! or Magic the Gathering, then Splinterlands would be a great addition to that list.
Crypto Gaming Obstacles
Certain challenges await those who experience Web3 games for the first time. Unlike traditional PC or console games that only require a software update now and then, crypto games tend to involve a bit more configuration.
First time newbies to the crypto gaming space are going to have questions such as, “What is an NFT?”, “What is a blockchain?”, “What do I need this token for?”, or “How do I get a wallet?”. Even though many crypto games have good walkthroughs on how to get set up, the learning curve can be quite steep for those who have never been exposed to crypto in the past.
The time to get started playing a crypto game may be a bit lengthier than expected. It is possible that a player needs to acquire crypto, sign up for a wallet, put the crypto into said wallet, download the game, connect the wallet to the game, etc. The onboarding process can be more involved than even experienced gamers are used to.
Since cryptocurrency is not fully regulated like stocks, bonds, or real estate, it is important to be cautious when dealing with rewards in the form of real assets as they are treated as taxable income in some countries. Reading up on the laws in your territory as they relate to crypto gaming may be a good way to stay in the clear when it comes to playing a crypto game.
Are crypto games worth it?
Even after learning some of the downsides of crypto gaming, they still don’t outweigh the advantages. Yes, they may take a bit more effort to get set up, but, once you are up and running, you won’t even remember what it took to begin with.
The crypto gaming industry is expected to rise significantly with more people seeing the value in owning their own tokens and earning real rewards for playing virtual games. One thing is for sure, and that is the video game industry setting new records in user growth year after year. Getting involved and claiming your land now may help get you in a good position for future success.
P.S. The team at Cindicator has developed a crypto trading bot called Stoic AI designed to rebalance long-term portfolios. GameFi tokens, as mentioned above, are often included in this portfolio by the Stoic algorithm. If you are interested in the crypto gaming industry’s long-term growth, consider entering a position with Stoic AI today!