How Blockchain Technology is bringing a change in Online Gaming Industry

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The gaming industry has grown significantly, evolving from basic games & consoles to a multi-billion dollar industry with global player base. Today, gaming is fully immersive experience that offers players wide range options to customize their gaming experience. From personalizing avatars to customizing environments, purchasing tools setting up tournaments, players are presented with many ways to enhance their time spent in virtual word...

The gaming industry has undergone significant development and growth, progressing from outdated consoles and simple games to a multi-billion dollar industry with a global player base of over 2.7 billion. Today, gaming has evolved into an all-encompassing experience, featuring highly realistic animations and a seemingly endless array of entertainment options.

One of the most significant changes in the gaming industry has been the shift towards open-ended, sandbox-style games that offer infinite playable loops, challenging players to engage with the game in new ways. Games like Minecraft, Roblox, and Fortnite are seeing tremendous success on the back of user-generated content (UGC), allowing players to create and exchange their own content.

However, the majority of gaming experiences are still trapped in traditional, centralized models, where developers and gaming companies hold the most power within the ecosystem. This means that even when players create their own content, its value is entirely tied to the gaming dynamics set by developers. In these centralized models, games are provided to players on a licensing basis, meaning they can play and enjoy them, but they do not own any in-platform assets. This can limit players' possibilities and subject them to unexpected or arbitrary decisions, such as the value of their creations or the number of units that can be sold or exchanged in a marketplace. These centralized models do not benefit players and fail to reward even the most loyal ones, despite the time they spend online. The solution to this problem is a decentralized gaming model where players have more control over their own content, assets, and gaming experience.

Blockchain technology is set to revolutionize the gaming industry by introducing a decentralized architecture that empowers users as the primary decision-makers and adds real-world value to virtual assets. Through the use of blockchain, players have ownership and control over their in-game creations such as avatars and props and can monetize them by trading or selling them through marketplaces using crypto or fiat currency. The value of these creations is determined by the community rather than developers, and the use of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) ensures that each item is unique and verifiable, adding trust to the overall ecosystem. Additionally, play-to-earn games allow players to earn incentives and tokens as a reward for their investment in the game, making blockchain games a highly appealing option.

Recent Boom and Rise of Crypto Gaming

The gaming industry has seen a growing interest in cryptocurrency as a result of advancements in PC and mobile gaming. Crypto games are disrupting the traditional gaming market by allowing players to earn while they play (play-to-earn model) and rewarding them for their time and effort. Players prefer platforms where they can create, collect, and exchange digital assets in exchange for virtual currencies or real-world money. A recent study shows that over 75% of online gamers would like to exchange their virtual assets for a currency that can be used across multiple platforms.

Blockchain technology offers a secure and rewarding system for monetizing the gaming industry. As a result, the industry is embracing blockchain-based crypto games, with $476 million worth of investments in the first half of 2021, which is double the total amount invested in 2020. There are already several successful play-to-earn blockchain games, such as Axie Infinity, which recently reached a record $1 billion in sales.

How interesting Gaming can become after the integration of Blockchain Technology

Tokenizing gameplay allows players to have ownership and control over their digital assets, while also giving them more influence over their overall gaming experience. Blockchain games utilizing a decentralized structure bring multiple advantages to the table.

1. Digital Property Rights: Players can retain ownership of their in-game virtual assets through blockchain technology, allowing them to verify and trace their ownership, thus unlocking the value of their gaming experiences.

2. Monetization Opportunities: In-game items can be monetized and traded, opening new revenue possibilities for players to cash in on their skills and create, buy, sell, or exchange digital assets.

3. Decentralized Platform: Publishers and creators can come together on one platform, with equal say and no central entity having the power to change the rules or limit market opportunities.

4. Transparent Marketplaces: Blockchain technology makes virtual economy marketplaces and Crypto betting safe, fair, thriving, and transparent, particularly useful for royalties.

5. In-Game Currency: Crypto gaming platforms often feature a native cryptocurrency that can be used to buy and sell digital assets, and can be exchanged for crypto or actual money via exchanges, making in-game purchases more convenient.

6. Player-Driven Economy: By giving players more control over the ecosystem, the gaming industry can thrive on original content and organic engagement between users.

7. Interoperability: Gamers can switch between games and hold crossover digital assets (NFTs) that can be sold or exchanged across platforms and marketplaces.

8. Community Governance: Blockchain games harness the power of the community to democratize gaming mechanics, through decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) where players can vote and agree on changes.

9. Creative Freedom: When a game is on a centralized server, developers have the most control. With blockchain, players are not limited by pre-set rules and can create freely without the fear of their creations being taken away or rules being changed by a third party.

Fairness in Winings

The benefits of using blockchain technology in the gaming industry are significant for both players and gaming companies, as it has the potential to bring about positive and long-term outcomes.

1. Revenue Generation: Blockchain technology allows creators to receive a significant portion of revenue generated from the game, such as micro-transactions, which can lead to high payouts for developers and increased player retention rates, as seen in platforms like Roblox which paid $250 Million in 2020 to its developers which worked well for them in case of user retention.

2. Cost-Effectiveness and Security: Blockchain's secure nature ensures that all in-game transactions are protected and the absence of intermediaries leads to faster and more efficient exchanges, saving time and money for both players and developers.

3. Transparency and Responsibility: Blockchain games offer a level playing field where all in-game transactions are publicly recorded and easily tracked, allowing for a neutral playground. Players also take responsibility for key aspects of their gaming experience, such as product-related decisions, instead of relying solely on developers to determine the course of the game.

Where are we Heading Next?

The integration of blockchain technology in the gaming industry is still in its early stages, but the initial results have been promising. The success of games like Axie Infinity and Crypto Kitties demonstrates that blockchain is not just a trend, but a powerful technology that is ready for widespread adoption.

It has upgraded gaming from a mere pastime to a profitable activity for players around the world and also helps improve virtual environments such as metaverses. An example of this is Sensorium Galaxy, a metaverse whose blockchain-based virtual economy can fairly and transparently reward users for their contributions in co-creating its various worlds.

Given the incentives and the clear appeal it holds for players and developers alike, blockchain is likely to become a standard feature in the decentralized gaming industry.

#Raghav Sawhney is an Indian Entrepreneur, Investor, and Keynote speaker, Active Author, Marketing, Business, and Fundraising Consultant. His breakthrough is primarily from generating millions of digital impressions for Entertainment, & Blockchain Industry, and various Startups. Founding director of Wasserstoff, a tech incubation company that helps startups grow without worrying about technology, and founder of BTCwires and Blockchainorbuzz.

This article was first published on January 15, 2023