The growth of blockchain-based games isn’t something that the cryptocurrency industry is now unaware of. The latest bull run paved the way for the gaming industry to introduce its presence and thrive in terms of engagement and value. P2E games were one of the fastest growing categories in the entire industry, where projects like Decentraland and Axie Infinity dominated the markets entirely.
The whole idea of blockchain games was to incentivize the gaming experience to be integrated with monetary rewards. NFTs, which were a huge part of these games also managed to gain much value, as games like Axie Infinity which featured NFTs were worth tens of thousands of dollars during its peak.
This exponential growth in the sector contributed to the introduction of newer games with more features and innovation. However, all this started to slow down as soon as the market crashed a couple of months ago. Top blockchain gaming projects that were topping charts in terms of traded volume and player engagement began to fall at a drastic speed too.
This not only put several companies and investors at a massive loss but also brought about discussions surrounding blockchain games.
NFTs Create a Sense of Haves and Have Nots
While blockchain gaming aims to create a better platform for players, it comes with limitations. NFTs being an integral part of games makes it difficult for everyone to participate since a majority of the projects need a player to buy them from a marketplace to go forward in the game. This becomes difficult for several players since it may not be possible for everyone to afford an NFT.
In fact, some games can only be played after the user buys an NFT. Many times, these assets may be costlier than one would anticipate. Some in-game items that had been tokenized in the 2021 Bullrun also traded in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. While there may not be a requirement of such a high amount, there still is a divide between the payers who can afford them and those who can’t.
Moreover, their volatility also exposes players to potentially losing money, which puts the game in a bad light. For all these reasons, legacy game studios have started to withdraw their attempts to crack the blockchain gaming industry. While Mojang, a Microsoft game company, claimed that NFTs lead to exclusion and scarcity, the developer of Minecraft prohibited their use entirely. This led to the closing of several sub-projects that were planned within the game ecosystem.
“NFTs are not inclusive of all our community and also create a scenario of the haves and have-nots”, Mojang said in a recent blog post.
Crypto-Native Projects May Benefit From These
Blockchain games were initially started by smaller blockchain enthusiasts or developers who were aware of cryptocurrencies as a concept. This quickly shifted, as major organizations came into the industry with huge funding, disrupting several newly created crypto-native projects.
The exit of such companies will once again give room for crypto-native entities and developers within the industry to create more projects that are in sync with the true fundamentals of blockchain games. It will also pave the way for experimentation, where creators will be able to actually test out several major benefits of integrating NFTs, like interoperability.
The aspect that allows players to use their assets in several games was one of the most boasted features of blockchain-based NFT games. However, the emergence of several major organizations has forced smaller developers to focus only on the financial aspect of new projects. This move from major gaming studios can reverse this.
As an industry that is still in its infancy, P2E games may be a sector that requires more time to match the potential it promises fully. While some projects like Axie Infinity, Alien Worlds and The Sandbox already boast of achieving many of them, a majority of projects are yet to assume the same position fully.
The future of blockchain-based gaming will likely be determined by the projects being introduced now and what utility they will bring to the table by the time the next bull market starts making its move.
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