Blockchain Gaming is an Untapped Opportunity
The potential of blockchain gaming, or even single-ecosystem currency gaming, as a massive opportunity for developers and marketers alike.
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One of the yet-to-be explored areas of the crypto industry is “blockchain gaming.” This category has promised decentralized in-game transactions from as far back as 2017. It’s promising, but the “GameFi” revolution hasn’t really materialized yet.
I see the potential of blockchain gaming, or even single-ecosystem currency gaming, as a massive opportunity for developers and marketers alike.
This concept isn’t necessarily new, but hasn’t been used to its potential. Earlier versions of Xbox Live required users to buy points in order to purchase games or downloadable content through the Xbox.
I imagine a world where a developer like, say, Electronic Arts (publisher of games like Apex Legends, Mass Effect, Jedi Fallen Order, and most of the sports games) creates a token. That token is native to the EA ecosystem, making it accepted across all of their games. You can use the tokens to purchase weapons in one game. Then you can sell other weapons back for tokens, which can then be used to buy skins in a different game.
One token for all of your games, across all of your games. Amazing.
And now we have a handful of developers creating games with native tokens. A particularly interesting one is Star Atlas, “grand strategy game of space exploration, territorial conquest, political domination, and more.” The game is built on top of the Solana blockchain, an increasingly popular “Ethereum killer” candidate.
Pretty awesome trailer. You should also check out their website. Honestly one of the coolest sites I’ve ever seen:
My understanding is that Star Atlas is going to be similar to the largely successful Eve Online, providing users with a free-roam universe to explore.
“Players are thrust into the middle of an intergalactic conflict and embark on an odyssey that will take them to the deepest reaches of the galaxy to gain clout in one of three main factions holding up universal peace.” - Star Atlas blog post
But where does the token come into play?
Well, they’re actually launching two tokens: ATLAS and POLIS. They both serve different purposes in the Star Atlas ecosystem:
ATLAS: a native utility token in the Star Atlas ecosystem. Players will be required to leverage ATLAS to acquire digital assets such as ships, crews, and lands.
POLIS: a POLIS is a governance token that represents all-encompassing jurisdictional power in the metaverse. Players can take another approach to exert their dominance through holding POLIS, which serves as a pivotal role in setting the dynamics and between different guilds.
Very cool, but still kind of confusing. Here’s how they explain it:
“To mimic the complexities of real-life politics, Star Atlas is driven by a dual token system of ATLAS & POLIS, which allows Star Atlas to create a tug-of-war between players in two different verticals. Political influence is represented by the ownership of POLIS, and in-game transactions like buying items are supported by ATLAS. Together, these tokens rival any real-world economy and governance with layers of intricacy to the gameplay.”
Token holders will also get additional perks, including exclusive NFTs posters, in-game skins, and more.
I highly recommend checking out their recent blog post on the game’s tokenomics. With the token sales launching soon, you can also learn more about that on this Cointelegraph article.
This is the first time we’ve seen a project take a real stab at creating a mainstream game with blockchain technology at its core. I’m going to be keeping a close eye on this space going forward as Star Atlas set a new precedent.
As a marketer, the GameFi space offers a number of new opportunities. For years the crypto marketing community has been saying one thing:
Mass audiences don’t care that a product is built using blockchain technology. They only care that it works better than the product that isn’t.
With the introduction of native and decentralized tokens into the gaming ecosystem, this is one of the few examples where that sentiment is being realized.
If you’re new to the whole blockchain gaming category, I highly recommend you also check out Decentraland. Built on the Ethereum blockchain, Decentraland a 3D virtual reality world created by its users.
Decentraland users can buy and sell digital real estate, while exploring, interacting and playing games within this virtual world. It’s also built with two native ERC20 tokens, MANA and LAND, which help you with land ownership and the purchasing of in-game goods.
One of the cool things about Decentraland is that marketers can buy ads within the virtual world. Even cooler, users can sell ad space to advertisers on their virtual land. This is potentially a huge opportunity for marketers to reach a notoriously difficult to reach audience.
Republic Realm’s Janine Yorio agrees:
“Companies are starting to advertise to them (users) where they are. Virtual Real estate is the way for those companies to buy the land, the pixels, the parcels, inside those games. Put ads up, put stores up, put communities inside there where they can market directly to customer.”
This is the bedrock settling before the building of the ground-floor of this emerging category. It’ll pay to keep an eye here going forward.