OCT 16, 2023
Play-to-Earn Gaming: Introducing Billions of Dollars in Value to Digital Assets and an Additional Source of Income to Players
MAY 05, 2022
Video games started as a small niche market almost 50 years ago. Many expected video games to be nothing more than a child's toy. Rather than fizzling away, this form of entertainment has become a massive industry, with the market worth over $90 billion in 2020 and expected to reach $256.97 billion by 2025.
Video games have become part of pop culture, becoming as ubiquitous as other media forms like movies, music and books.
As the industry grows, it continually integrates the best consumer technology available, adopting the latest and greatest through graphical fidelity, processing power, virtual reality and more.
Some of the most prevalent trends within technology over the past few years include blockchain, NFTs and digital assets like Bitcoin. Just as in the past, video games have welcomed and incorporated this new technology, bringing it to the masses in the process.
NFTs are currently being integrated into some of the industry's biggest names, such as Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty, Ghost Recon and more. While games have already utilized NFTs in the past, this move into mainstream video games will put these exciting new tokens in front of millions or even billions of users.
Through these innovative technologies, gamers can not only use video games for entertainment purposes, but they will now be able to use them for financial gain. The process of earning digital assets while enjoying a video game is known as play-to-earn.
Play-to-earn games reward players with in-game tokens, NFTs or other digital assets just by participating and playing video games.
Though play-to-earn gaming is not a new concept, it was only able to break through and make an impact following the integration of blockchain and digital assets. With the inclusion of blockchain technology, play-to-earn games use NFTs as leverage and provide true ownership, something missing from mainstream video games.
For the most part, NFTs have been relegated to collectibles. However, gaming has created additional use cases for these tokens, expanding their reach and bringing the market closer to the mainstream. And, thanks to the immutability of blockchains, true ownership ensures that every in-game item truly belongs to the player, with no way of altering that.
These design choices ensure that control stays in the hands of the users, maintaining the decentralized future the space is constantly working towards. Conversely, with more traditional gaming, the in-game assets do not belong to the user and can easily be taken away at the developer's whim. A lack of ownership over assets has led to millions of dollars wasted yearly through micro-transactions - this is why the inclusion of NFTs is so integral to play-to-earn games.
The true ownership of in-game assets in the form of NFTs verified by blockchain technology ensures assets can’t be taken away or altered, even if the game's server crashes. The interoperability of NFTs also allows players to use them anywhere, trade them for other digital assets, and more, all without being restricted to a single platform.
The non-fungible nature of NFTs ensures that each token is unique and its supply and attributes are fixed and cannot be changed. This system leads to the rarity of a particular NFT being unable to decline over time.
NFTs are constantly growing, with the total NFT sales equating to approximately $1.8 billion per month. The range of applications for these tokens quickly increases as the years pass, making more and more use cases across different platforms
In summation, with all of the advantages of NFTs listed here, it is clear that play-to-earn gaming has been transformed and evolved through the power of blockchain and digital assets.
Play-to-earn gaming's development has become closely linked to the progression of blockchain and digital assets, a space that has seen a meteoric rise within the last few years. This indicates that the idea of engaging and participating with video games as a real job is now a possibility.
When you mention making money from playing video games, your mind will likely wander to esports. However, with a play-to-earn structure, anyone can make capital from playing games, regardless of skill level or if you have dedicated your life to a single game.
With an estimated three billion-plus gamers on the planet and counting, it is clear that video games as a vehicle are the most accessible way to bring digital assets into the mainstream. Through things like play-to-earn gaming, digital assets will no longer be something reserved for the finance and tech crowd.
This gaming model will entertain and provide an alternative way to earn income for close to half of the earth's population while also being available globally to anyone with an internet connection.
About the author:
Premium Carrots is the VP of Data Science at Riot Racers, a play-to-earn car racing game where players can own parts of the game. Players can earn by playing the game for free or by simply owning parts of the game. All ownable parts of the game are in the form of verifiably owned NFTs.