Crypto gaming: what's it all about

A peek behind the scenes of blockchain-enabled gaming.
WRITTEN BY
Daniel Taylor
29/11/2022
4 min

Over the years, blockchain has spread through nearly all industries and walks of life - and gaming is no exception. In 2021, the global video game market topped $195 billion. As more players around the world become immersed in online gaming, it’s only natural that cryptocurrency will play a more significant role. 

In fact, crypto is already integrated into the gaming economy. There are Play To Earn (P2E) games that reward players by paying them in digital tokens or cryptocurrency depending on how much they play or achieve.

What is a crypto/blockchain game?

A crypto game, otherwise known as an NFT game or blockchain game, is a kind of video game that incorporates elements that utilise blockchain technologies, such as non-fungible tokens and cryptocurrencies.

These games give players the ability to purchase, trade, or sell in-game items with different players on online marketplaces. To monetise this, the publisher of the game might take a fee from every transaction or earn money via in-game advertising. 

Many of these games are P2E, which encourage users to spend more time on the game as they earn rewards for completing tasks, such as killing a certain number of enemies or completing collectable sets.

Blockchain games first came onto the scene in 2017. The first widely recognised blockchain game was CryptoKitties. Players can own, breed, and trade NFT kitties, which are the only property in the game. The game gained explosive growth upon its release but these days is mostly known for its role as a waymarker in the crypto story.

However, the video gaming industry has really taken a shine to these games within the past couple of years.

Why crypto gaming?

Encourages crypto and blockchain adoption - The popularity of crypto gaming naturally adds to the adoption of crypto and blockchain technology.

Rewarding for developers and players - Not only are players financially incentivised, but developers can grow their revenue sources as the P2E ecosystem grows.

A new gaming era - We have already seen P2E crypto games create fresh trends in the wider gaming world. Coupled with tech such as AR and VR, P2E games can pave the way for unique projects in the future.

You can earn crypto while you play - Who wouldn’t like the opportunity to earn while they are having fun?

Real-world value - Assets in these games will have real-world value and also it prevents the sale of fake in-game assets.

Full ownership - In traditional games, assets are owned by the game developer and confined to the particular game. In crypto games, players have full ownership and can trade them for other assets, real-world money or stablecoins.

What are some of the best-known projects?

There are an increasing number of crypto games entering the market. Some crypto games to consider playing include:

  • Tezotopia (UNO) - A new Tezos P2P blockchain game, it’s an NFT game that lets players have Tezotops so they can battle each other and win loot boxes that contain prizes, rare artefacts and collectibles. You can buy, sell and collect digital territories and units.
  • Axie Infinity (AXS) - Axis Infinity is a crypto-meets-Pokémon style game revolving around NFT pets known as Axies. Players can raise, battle, trade and breed the creatures. It’s the biggest blockchain game available today.
  • Star Atlas (ATLAS) - The world of P2E crypto gaming and space exploration combine in this futuristic MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) built on the Solana blockchain. This fantasy game is based in 2620 in a metaverse-style virtual world.
  • Gods Unchained (GODS) - A Magic: The Gathering inspired trading card game that lets players duel each other in fantasy realms as part of a strategic and competitive play-to-earn system.
  • MetaBlaze (MBLZ) - A newer game that has a unique and exciting rewards system where players can earn some of the top coins on the market, not just the MBLZ token. This immersive, narrative-driven RPG allows players to explore and battle for control of the vase Galaxia Blue universe.
  • Silks (STT) - The first horse racing and breeding P2E game that mirrors the real world of thoroughbred horse racing. It takes the public data and stats of real thoroughbred horses and links them to NFTs. When real horses win races or breed, the equivalent Silks horse earns rewards.

Will crypto gaming take off?

According to Newzoo, the global gaming market is expected to bring in revenue of $225.7 billion by 2025. Blockchain games are expected to play a key role in this growth.

In 2021, there was $4 billion raised for blockchain games. However, a report by DappRadar, which is a market tracker, has revealed that we could see investments of over $10 billion in blockchain games this year. This gives you a great indication of where the market is heading.

Despite the fact that the market cap has taken a considerable hit, like a lot of other crypto industries, there continues to be increasing institutional and venture capital confidence in game finance or GameFi and we are starting to see more partnerships between big brands and cryptocurrencies.

One example is Misfits Gaming Group, an American esports organisation based in Miami which has teams that compete in Call of Duty League and League of Legends, and which announced earlier in the year a cryptocurrency partnership with blockchain company Tezos. Tezos will be the official blockchain for Misfits and Tezos will help Misfits Gaming launch its new blockchain gaming platform called Block Born.Over the next year, we can expect to see companies take considerable steps to lower the barriers to entry into blockchain gaming. New platforms are already being developed to ensure this is the case. With a more scalable and transparent ecosystem, crypto gaming is set to flourish. It will be exciting to see how the developments of blockchain gaming might integrate with the growing metaverse.