Crypto gaming allows players to use their in-game items and XP to earn money via the play-to-earn model. With blockchain technology, players can buy, sell, and trade digital assets globally. Crypto gaming revolutionizes the traditional experience by giving your in-game purchases real-world value.
Crypto gaming decentralizes the traditional gaming process. Instead of earning experience points or XP only specific to one game, players can use their points and other in-game assets across various crypto gaming projects. This is all thanks to blockchain technology.
What is crypto gaming, and how does it work? Does it enhance the gaming experience and support the existing industry? Here is what you need to know.
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Crypto is widely popular as an investment and a form of currency. From bitcoin to NFTs, the crypto world is constantly expanding and changing. Today, it’s undoubtedly the place for investors looking to keep up and stay ahead.
Because crypto is so expansive, many investors understand how it can penetrate various industries. Crypto gaming transforms traditional centralized interactions by introducing blockchain technology. The advancements help players use XP, rewards, and other digital assets to enhance their experience.
Crypto gaming provides a way for players to make money via a play-to-earn model. An excellent example of this is the gaming platform Axie Infinity. In this virtual world, players buy characters, level them up, and then sell them for a higher price to make a profit. Players can also battle against each other to earn Ethereum-based crypto gaming tokens.
When playing games, people usually can make in-game purchases to enhance their gameplay. Spare lives, extra tokens, and character upgrades are standard. Game designers earn profits with every download using in-app advertising and other marketing tactics.
In the real world, in-game purchases hold no value. However, crypto gaming changes that. It allows players to make purchases via the blockchain and trade their digital assets with other players.
Understanding what makes crypto work is essential. Make a purchase, own that asset, and then sell it for profit on various platforms. Your favorite game becomes a lucrative marketplace tailored to improving the user experience. Traditional games don’t allow that because there are no digital ownership or customization options.
Transforming the traditional pay-to-play model into a play-to-earn model could make crypto gaming the future of e-commerce. The notion of earning money while playing a game is understandably appealing to a wide variety of people, both gamers and non-gamers. Crypto gaming takes a leisurely activity and turns it into a money-making opportunity.
It’s also a widely available profitable opportunity. Meanwhile, mobile games only increase accessibility. There are several crypto-based games available already. Some of the most successful options include:
- Plant vs Undead
- Gods Unchained
- Axie Infinity
- Gala Games: Town Stars
- The Sandbox
- Age of Rust
NOTE: Most crypto gaming platforms use currency exclusive to that game.
Two other sectors of crypto gaming have also emerged. While similar, they each have differences that set them apart. These other two sectors include:
- NFT Gaming
As crypto gaming began rising in popularity, another branch emerged called NFT gaming. An NFT, or non-fungible token, is a crypto asset on the blockchain that represents real-world, physical items like art or real estate. However, you can’t make replicas because each one is unique (hence the value).
In-game NFTs function like collectible items. When the NFT gaming sector emerged, it reimagined and enhanced the play-to-earn crypto gaming model by introducing the collectible gaming concept. NFT gaming also creates rare collections that users can trade on the blockchain.
In many cases, the terms “NFT gaming” and “crypto gaming” are used interchangeably. While the two have some similarities, they’re still different concepts. The main difference is that crypto gaming transactions are made with crypto coins. In contrast, in NFT gaming, native coins are used to generate or gather NFTs.
GameFi is another type of blockchain gaming that combines decentralized finance or DeFi with games. DeFi is a type of financial technology based on a secure ledger, similar to cryptocurrencies. The idea is to remove third parties, like banks and other institutions, from in-game financial transactions.
With DeFi, you keep earnings in a secure digital wallet that’s instantly accessible regardless of business hours and bank holidays. This technology also eliminates any fees banks and other financial institutions charge for their services. Because the wallet is solely digital, it’s accessible by anyone at any time so long as they have an internet connection.
One GameFi platform is MOBOX, which combines NFT collectibles with yield farming. Yield farming is a means of earning interest on your cryptocurrencies, similar to how your savings account accumulates interest in a bank. Players can take out loans or borrow assets for in-game purposes to yield a higher ROI.
Earning money while playing a video game is hard to turn down. It’s a creative and relatively easy way to accumulate assets and wealth in the crypto gaming space. Other advantages can include:
- Instant Transactions
- Open Availability
- Enhanced Security
- Earning Opportunities
Crypto gaming also helps the industry develop better products to support the growing community.
There is no bureaucracy or big banks in charge of transactions in crypto gaming. This means the process is more efficient and instantaneous when you make transactions. Because of the speed and efficiency, cryptocurrencies make in-game purchases much more accessible.
Users don’t have to wait for third-party providers to process or approve transactions. It all happens at the will of the player. This also means you can avoid any extraneous service fees.
Smartphones and mobile gaming make it so anyone can participate in crypto gaming anywhere at any time. Similarly, cryptocurrency is just as widely available. Using crypto allows players to play and make transactions internationally without any issues with security and exchange rates.
Open availability also means that crypto gaming has a very expansive reach. Borders and competitive economies can trade seamlessly. It helps streamline massive purchases and substantial investments to build wealth in underrepresented communities.
Transaction security is often top of mind when making online purchases or selling digital assets. Blockchain technology and smart contracts help secure it, preventing illegal asset trading, hacking, and duplication. Many crypto gaming platforms create a fixed ledger more discreetly than entering credit or debit card information.
The play-to-earn model may be the next big thing in gaming. It already has the potential to revolutionize the industry. Traditional gaming was focused solely on leisurely entertainment. Yet, crypto gaming can enhance every aspect of our most beloved games.
Some online games have started introducing in-game economies. Take “The Sims” series, for example. You send your character to work where they earn a paycheck, then use that money to buy necessities, build homes, and raise virtual families. Unfortunately, all that effort and money don’t hold any value in the real world. There are no realistic earning opportunities within.
Enjoy an added monetary incentive in crypto gaming. The more a person plays, the more in-game items they can collect. The more they collect, the higher their profits will be.
The gaming industry is constantly evolving as new technology and ideas step onto the scene. The last ten years have brought incredible advancements in how we enjoy virtual playtime. Product developers release games wildly different from the originals, and that’s the only way to stay competitive.
Crypto gaming is beneficial to the industry and community in four distinct ways:
- Developers can create new types of games using decentralized applications (DApps).
- Casual users can also bypass the limitations of game development.
- People can collaborate on a secure blockchain.
- Digital asset trading is more dynamic and profitable through crypto gaming.
While the pros of crypto gaming are undoubtedly appealing, it’s also crucial to consider the potential risks. While crypto is generally a very secure network, there is always the possibility of encountering preventable and unavoidable pitfalls.
Some of the risks of crypto gaming include:
- Potential Loss
- Poor Definitive Structure
- Enjoyment Depletion
- Stock Market Volatility
- Entry Costs
Enjoying a play-to-earn game will usually require you to spend ample time playing before seeing any notable returns. This means you could invest much time just trying to recover your initial investment. However, your profits aren’t always guaranteed or consistent.
If you misplace your crypto wallet password, you could get locked out of your assets and funds. Or play an unregulated crypto game and put your money at risk for hacks and scams. Meanwhile, cryptocurrency could crash anytime, resulting in a tremendous loss of profits.
Blockchain technology serving as the hypothetical backbone for many crypto gaming platforms is still in its infancy. This means it can, and likely will, change over time. Being in its infancy means there are still wrinkles to iron out from an imperfect system.
This is important to remember, especially if you’re considering investing significant money into crypto gaming. Crypto tokens and NFTs often have volatile, fluctuating prices that could make them risky assets to own. Without a definitive structure overseeing every operation, you must manage your assets and determine the best course of action for them. Digital asset management could be too challenging for some people.
Traditionally, games were all about having fun. They provided casual recreation and a break from the mundane. Crypto gaming and the play-to-earn model could refocus the average gamer’s attention. Profits often take the fun out of our pastimes.
For instance, developers could make leveling up or unlocking items in the game much harder. Many people might find their games less appealing because of it. Crypto gaming might be practical, but it’s not for recreation. Earning profits comes first, and having a good time comes second.
Crypto market volatility is evident. The value of cryptocurrencies is likely to change over time. Those changes could be mild or severe, depending on several factors. Meanwhile, everything could happen at a moment’s notice. Digital tokens and assets associated with crypto gaming don’t have a fixed value. This means they react dramatically to market trends, putting your investments at a higher risk.
Some crypto gaming platforms may have a high entry cost. You must pay before playing the game and collecting assets or selling NFTs. For example, the crypto gaming platform Axie Infinity requires you to purchase three NFT characters (Axies) to begin. These digital assets can range in price, often with various market conditions.
Most traditional new release games rarely cost more than $60. Thus, anything more than that could deter newcomers and avid players. Curious gamers should explore the pros and cons of crypto gaming to determine their ideal path.
Crypto gaming changes the traditional, centralized gaming experience by introducing blockchain technology. It allows players to use XP, rewards, and other items across various virtual platforms. Many participants earn significant profits from high-quality NFTs.
Embrace the industry changes to enhance gameplay and make money. Crypto gaming has already seen tremendous growth and increased interest. It’s only a matter of time before we’re all involved in trading on the blockchain.
About the Author
Jonathan Hung is one of the most active angel investors in Southern California; his mission is to drive value creation within each portfolio company. In support of this mission, he serves as Co-Managing Partner at – Unicorn Venture Partners.
He and his team target investments in US companies with global market potential, focusing on long-term growth expansion to East Asian markets.
As a Managing Member for his family office fund, J Heart Ventures, Jonathan developed his investing prowess, making investments in start-up companies such as Gyft, ChowNow, Miso Robotics, Clover Health, and Bitmain, to name a few start-ups he funded.
Jonathan has various degrees from the University of Southern California, London School of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.