Blockchain games are the newest trend in gaming. They allow players to earn cryptocurrency while playing video games, and they are seeing a huge growth in popularity despite some controversy surrounding them.
To find out more, we spoke with PlayToEarn, a platform that helps gamers use this technology to take control of their game time and get rewarded for it. Here’s what you need to know about blockchain games.
What is a blockchain game?
A blockchain game is a type of video game that exists within a decentralized ledger. All transactions within the game are stored on that public ledger, meaning they are transparent and cannot be changed once they have been submitted into the chain.
As well as being decentralized, many of these games are also provably fair. This means that each roll of the dice or card draw can be checked against previous activity on the chain to ensure it adheres to all of its rules.
How do they differ from classical online games?
Typically, this kind of transparency would be frowned upon by players because it makes botting and cheating easy to spot. However, in decentralized games, much like the real world itself, trust must be earned by other players.
This sense of community ensures that many blockchain games are a little different from the face-to-face games we might enjoy at a local tavern.
What is blockchain technology?
The technology behind decentralized ledger systems such as blockchains is still very new and could have wide-reaching impacts well beyond the gaming industry. Decentralization means that there is no central bank or governing body which can arbitrarily change its rules and shut down an entire game with ease.
This also enables gamers to stay in control of their funds and not be subject to the decisions of a central power like a game developer or publisher.
Why do we need blockchain games?
Blockchain technology has already allowed for the creation of digital currencies such as Bitcoin, but its use goes far beyond this. It can be used to track any kind of transaction between parties in a transparent way. This then allows players’ actions within the game to have real-world consequences.
This means that gamers can earn money while playing their favorite titles.
So, there’s no middleman?
That’s right – unlike typical online games, which use a central server, blockchain games run on thousands of individual computers. This means that transactions between players are done peer-to-peer, and the game’s creator (or indeed another player) cannot simply decide to shut it down or steal your winnings.
Are there any downsides?
At the moment, you’ll struggle to find many titles which allow full player-versus-player interaction due to speed issues with transactions waiting for verification on the chain before being accepted. However, this is expected to improve as new generations of blockchains emerge.
It will also increase in speed as more people start mining or staking tokens within a particular blockchain – where they offer their computing power in exchange for rewards from the system itself.
What can I do with games based on a blockchain?
There are currently two main types of blockchain-based games: Collectible Games and Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). A collectible game is one in which the player purchases items or characters, similar to opening a pack of trading cards.
The value of these assets comes from players desiring them due to rarity, so it’s more like investing than traditional gaming. These tokens can be bought, exchanged, and even sold for cryptocurrency.
Blockchain technology really shines with its use in NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, where each token is unique. An example would be Cryptokitties, where each kittie is unique. As they aren’t necessary to win the game, they can be traded for other in-game items, cryptocurrency, or fiat currency.
How do blockchain games make money?
Unlike most video game publishers who sell access to their games and then profit from microtransactions, blockchain games instead focus on creating tokens that people want to own and use within the context of a particular title.
The more valuable these tokens become through popularity and scarcity, the bigger the potential profit margins for those behind them – especially as there’s no middleman taking a cut!
Do I need cryptocurrency to play blockchain games?
No – you can play many blockchain titles without needing to buy any cryptocurrencies at all. Some games can be played using a standard web browser, and others require a free download to run on a computer or mobile device.
Our favorite crypto games
Cryptocelebrities – A celebrity trading card game where members of the public can trade ‘celebs’ including Paris Hilton, Elon Musk, and even YouTubers.
Ether Shrimp Farm – This viral title allows users to breed shrimp in a race against time to harvest their eggs for Ether tokens. It’s currently one of the most popular blockchain games out there.
Etheremon – A monster-collecting RPG in which every element of the game is backed by Ethereum’s blockchain technology.
Axie Infinity – A game where players fight with and breed fantasy creatures called Axies. It even allows you to create your own characters, future games, and items based on them.
War Riders – A post-apocalyptic car combat game where the vehicles themselves are blockchain assets that can be stolen or exchanged for cryptocurrency.
Is it going to be the future of online gaming?
Blockchain is currently in its infancy, but if more developers embrace this technology, we can expect things to improve as time goes on. In particular, as new generations of blockchains come into being, they should become more robust and scalable, increasing speed and hopefully eliminating those pesky transaction fees which have been so prevalent up until now.
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