Blockchain gaming is a topic that has been widely discussed in the cryptocurrency industry. Today we guide you through the development of the union between gaming and blockchain, and review some of the successes as well as the obstacles we are seeing today.
Widespread adoption is a topic that relates significantly to blockchain technology. The common point is that blockchain holds so much potential, but has yet to appeal to the masses. As hard as it is to believe, especially when you take the acclaim into account, no consensus-backed currency has been able to appeal to the mass market. Therefore, it cannot achieve the mainstream adoption it needs to properly thrive.
There are two important terms that are recurring in the explanations behind the technology’s lack of adoption. Those terms are “mass appeal” and “mass market.” Like with any other innovation, it has to captivate the target demographic or else it will flop. Or, at the very least, its performance will be greatly underwhelming.
An additional drawback that can arise pertains to the range. Specifically, the range of groups that could help enhance the popularity of the innovation. Once you succeed in captivating a certain demographic, you may start thinking about expansion. In regards to blockchain, cryptocurrency is it dominating market, so those who specialize in virtual currency are (usually) onboard automatically. However, despite its high regards, mass adoption is still nothing more than a goal that they aspire to reach.
Evidently, it is going to take more than crypto to help boost them to that particular level of recognition. This is where gaming platforms come in. With gaming being a popular activity, it’s possible that collaborating with it could help them get closer to widespread adoption.
Advantages of the alliance of blockchain and gaming
The real-world value of virtual assets isn’t a new concept by any means. The act of exchanging fiat currency for items that are powerful or rare pre-exists the original online multiplayer games. Those responsible for the critical failure of this market are, unfortunately, the developers themselves. Because there are no overseers or discernable standards, the game creators are able to make more of any item that becomes valuable. As a result, it has the potential to seriously damage – or ‘crash’ – the item’s overall value.
Blockchain gaming platforms could conceivably remedy this issue by way of the distributed ledger consensus system. Every single transaction must receive validation by an array of dissimilar locations that will then come to a majority consensus. Following the platform’s release and the nodes’ creation, the developer has no more control over what undergoes construction.
Blockchain technology provides a handy tool for gamers for a wide variety of reasons. These include decentralized asset trades, confirmable insufficiency of virtual objects and collectibles, and payment networks that are fast and stable. Moreover, they provide developers with the ability to monetize their creations in a proper manner. On top of that, there are ongoing searches for methods of providing viable and enjoyable games for blockchain gaming platforms. This effectively leads to a number of interesting innovations in both blockchain scalability and asset creation.
The proper monetization of game creations is typically a problem for a majority of game developers. By providing direct creator-to-consumer interaction, blockchains allow developers to build and disburse their products any use for expensive intermediaries. This also grants them total control over the process of digital rights management. Developers are able to monetize games via special in-game tokens or assets as part of the game’s design. Consequently, they will receive automatic payments in cryptocurrencies by way of leveraging smart contracts.
CryptoKitties is a game that focuses primarily on “breedable” digital assets. According to its website:
“In CryptoKitties, users collect and breed oh-so-adorable creatures that we call CryptoKitties! Each kitty has a unique genome that defines its appearance and traits. Players can breed their kitties to create new furry friends and unlock rare cattributes.”
Users are only able to purchase digital cats by using Ethereum. This, if you don’t know, is a smart contract cryptocurrency that comes in second on the CoinMarketCap behind Bitcoin. The kitties themselves are made as an ERC-721 token within their blockchain.
ERC-721 is one of many codebase standards that are of use in the Ethereum blockchain. To be more specific, it is a standard that is non-divisible and non-fungible. You can reduce Ethereum itself into small fractions, which is actually counterproductive to the CryptoKitties platform. Furthermore, there is a crucial requirement that each cat is unique. So, each ERC-721 token is unique and trackable.
Users can breed and exchange their CryptoKitties for Ethereum while in the marketplace. The company behind this game are unable to fill the market with cheap cats due to the blockchain system. Furthermore, they cannot make duplicates of the more valuable cats and they can’t remove cats that already exist. In essence, the market is generally pretty trustless, and the user base is what creates the value. This effectively averts value loss because the creators are not able to meddle with their own system.
Enjin provides users with a blockchain gaming platform that’s all-in-one and can help create communities that draw from specific gaming platforms. It retains its very own content management system (CMS), as well as a website builder. The latter feature functions on a ‘drag and drop’ system, meaning that you don’t need any coding experience to build a professional-looking website. This is undoubtedly ideal for both novices and skillful programmers who want to save time and effort.
The Enjin platform consists of forums that are already built with the conventional features of discussion. Its design draws from gamification standards where users can acquire points and receive awards. Additionally, they can level up by creating a solid reputation for themselves within the community.
There is also an Enjin native app specifically for Android and iOS devices that will serve your community. It includes all content that exists across your modules on the platform in one location for your group to access. The primary advantage that stems from this is that users will receive push notifications via the app. This way, they will never be out of the loop.
In their manifesto, they state the following:
“We want to reignite the spark of creativity that lies in every game developer’s heart, extinguished by years of battling with game monetization models fueled by greed and monopolies…We want to unite gamers and game developers under a single banner, so they can become an ocean that will obliterate the old, corrupt structures of the gaming industry — and reshape it into an art form that is made fair and revolutionized by new technologies.”
ETH.TOWN is a blockchain gaming platform made of – as its website boasts – diverse features and exceptional quality. In the game, you play as a real estate investor who works with the Crypto Tower. Your goal is to buy low, sell high, obtain bonuses, and ultimately develop your share in the crypto enterprise. According to their website, the general gameplay is like this:
“Become a realtor buying out floors for certain crypto-companies in a crypto-business tower. Having your price beaten wins you a big profit, successfully buying out a floor wins you the whole floor and membership in the investors club.”
The Crypto Tower is a structure with crypto affiliations that contains crypto offices and apartments. Some of the businesses are traditional, while others are comparatively more “crazy.” Every floor has its own rules, profit structure, bonuses, etc., and there is often the addition of fun twists. Any other details that pertain to them will reveal themselves gradually over time. Whenever you acquire a new floor or participate in it in a variety of ways, you will then add a special achievement to your collection. By having a lot of these achievements, it will provide you with special perks on your journey through the game.
The obstacles in the way
With the above-mentioned examples, plus others like TRON Dogs and CryptoCountries, one would think that the collaboration of blockchain and gaming would be the obvious move. However, there are several obstacles in the way of a complete intersection between the two. The primary one is scalability.
A helpful tool for activity evaluation regarding decentralized applications (DApps) that exist on top of Ethereum is DappRadar. It also displays an indisputable lack of users for blockchain games and decentralized asset exchanges. It’s still in its infancy, but the trend is indicative of a current lack of sustainability for blockchain games. Gas costs on Ethereum tend to be considerably high during times of network blockage. This causes numerous gaming DApps to fall into obscurity following a launch.
Another problem that comes from the scalability limitations of blockchain gaming is the scope of games that a blockchain network helps create. Slower network speeds and a lack of developer activity leads to several games being iterations of more popular mobile games or games that focus on collectibles. This is not necessarily a long-term problem, due to some projects focusing chiefly on creating three-dimensional worlds. An example of this particular kind of game is Decentraland. Moreover, a great number of games are starting to make the shift towards more ambitious goals.
Regardless of the obstacles, it’s apparent that the union between blockchain technology and gaming is possible. Not only that, but it can produce fantastic results for all of the participating parties. Only time will tell if this will successfully push blockchain closer to mass adoption, but it appears to already be on the right track.