A Sustainable Play-To-Earn Gaming Model

Image: by Chuck Fortner on Unsplash

Play-to-Earn is the gaming model of the future but not as presented today by the blockchain industry.

A realistic play-to-earn model should begin with free-to-play. Otherwise, it just becomes an investment and most probably an inferior one.

Games like Axie Infinity and Splinterlands delivered profit to part of the gaming population. Concerns, however, always exist, and especially during a crypto downturn, the chances of these models succeeding are slim.

It was all euphoric when the market was rising, with blockchain games receiving funding from VCs and billionaires.

Although, the market, is still immature and tied to the BTC boom and bust cycles, initiated by each 210,000 block halving events.

The play-to-earn model will evolve and expand beyond gaming, corporations, and crypto price fluctuations.

Features of Success

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We can separate the features that can lead a blockchain game to success in two sections:

The Gaming Aspect and Entertainment Value

  • A Virtual World with up-to-date graphics and animations.

Modern MMORPGs, should be the standard. Not easy to create a high detailed virtual environment and demands constant funding.Depending on the genre and gameplay graphics can be adjusted. Blockchain games should match the quality in graphics and detail of the corporate games to achieve competitiveness.

Some micromanagement games or other genres don’t base their success on graphics, though, so it depends on the type of game.

  • Addicting Gameplay

Either make it addicting or don’t make it at all. Even without the graphics design and audio features, a game can still be competitive. It needs the factor of gameplay boosted to the maximum and it can achieve growth.

The entertainment value will be the factor of successfully integrating the gaming market. It stems from the above two features modern gamers DEMAND.
Do you think you can attract real gamers instead of just profit-seekers while offering poor entertainment?

Make the blockchain games, with the gaming factor as a priority.

Earning Aspect

  • Free To Play model

Make the game open for all, and perhaps ask for a subscription that will unlock features and offer extras to the gamer that pays.

There should be a balance, though, and the game won’t turn into Pay-To-Win.

You want everyone to have a chance to make it to the top, depending on their skills.
Some gamers can afford to pay and skip parts of the game (mostly the farming part) that may also seem boring.

In most online games, there will be “whales”. Gamers that simply want to live the full experience the game has to offer, buy skins, items and customize the appearance of their avatars.
Some free-to-play games sustain themselves just by creating new skins and items and upgrading the in-game shops every month.
You don’t need to exclude free players that want to test the game first. Eventually, if the game contains the required elements, most will spend some money on it, even if they are just trying to earn crypto and don’t consider the gaming aspect at all.

  • Incentivize new players

You can’t expect new players to take the risk and pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars in any game. This is a financial risk not wise to take. Even F2p players must find ways within the game mechanics to profit.

As the difficulty will increase especially close to end-game stages, even the free-to-play users will need subscriptions and items that will be available in the game marketplace, so they will also become part of the game economy.

  • Advertisements in-game

Advertising raise awareness and increase the userbase. Including advertisements in the games is an additional profit stream that could be shared with the players.

A banner or even full advertisements can be visible inside the virtual world. This is basically the end-game for the Metaverse. Adding advertising banners in the game will become a source of income above subscriptions and in-game sales.

The vast market of mobile games understands this concept better.

Finally, devs should avoid greed. No gamer wants to pay excessively for gaming, even when there is an opportunity to make a wage. Usually, online games ask for a monthly subscription, to pay for the cost of operations and profit the corporation. This is money not so important to pay and help the gamer by providing extra perks and items. Greed has destroyed many blockchain games, although this field remains suppressed by another kind of greed, the blockchain fees.

In Conclusion

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The gaming industry will evolve and integrate blockchain games to create a unique blend as game-NFTs achieve the deserved popularity.

Selling virtual items and in-game tokens is not new. Since the first MMOs appeared there was always demand by gamers. The stance of corporations was to keep the digital markets always under control and not allow in-game trading of assets for money. Black markets with PayPal exist (since the 90s) serving the needs of gamers. Although, PayPal was never reliable as a payment method for digital goods since it retains a chargeback option that was abused and created uncertainty to gamers trading game items.

With cryptocurrencies, marketplace websites for gaming items are thriving with escrow services involved, since chargeback does not apply, however, the black markets can evolve into in-game markets with the use of NFTs.

Ethereum is the platform NFTs originate from, however, the scalability issues it presents make this blockchain incompatible with online gaming. Multiple smart contract networks with EVM compatibility are trying today to bridge the chaotic Ethereum fees and scalability issues.

VCs are funding some smart contract networks (Solana, Avalance, Fantom, Polygon), but many fail to achieve significant efficiency levels. There are also new networks like smartBCH offering high throughput and a cost-efficient approach, funded by people of this industry.

NFTs, smart contracts, and gaming are a combination that can only fail if the selection of the blockchains is not the right one. The Metaverse won’t wait for Ethereum to upgrade to ETH2.0, which doesn’t guarantee scalability either.

The Metaverse is not far, but only a few years shy, and anything we create should consider efficiency and compatibility.

Cost-efficient networks are already in demand, either for payments or for smart contracts.

The era of investors randomly buying assets with zero fundamentals is coming to an end.

The investment focus is shifting, so don’t get caught by surprise in the coming months when the prices of some cryptocurrencies the mainstream was disregarding, finally start performing.

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Originally published at https://read.cash.

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Cryptocurrency Writer. https://read.cash/@Pantera

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Pantera

Pantera

Cryptocurrency Writer. https://read.cash/@Pantera

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