The metaverse is expanding. An immersive world replete with interactive experiences is opening up in front of us, and thanks to the nascent play-to-earn model and NFTs, economic opportunities are baked in.
Although it’s too early to say whether the metaverse will achieve widespread adoption, and in the process become a hub where participants can play, work, and socialize, several blockchain-powered virtual reality (VR) applications have already achieved a measure of success. Investors, meanwhile, are increasingly writing checks for disruptive metaverse startups that have the potential to deliver awesome returns.
Even Facebook is getting in on the act, pledging $50 million to build out metaverse technologies compatible with VR headsets and augmented reality (AR) goggles/wristbands. The latter is designed to interpret complex hand gestures via sensors that detect electrical motor nerve signals in the wrist, enabling wearers to interact with the environment projected through their glasses.
It all sounds a little futuristic – but didn’t they say the same about the internet in the early days? Here are seven projects currently expanding experiential horizons in the digital realm.
PlanetSandbox is a recently-launched 3D game that allows players to earn digital currency both from conquering other players and customizing worlds for use within the metaverse.
The crypto-powered physic sandbox game will have an AR/VR integration in the future and distinguishes itself from contemporaries by giving gamers access to a building tool. Ever wanted to tweak the terrain of a game – or design a different ecosystem entirely? This feature makes it possible, enabling changes to the landscape, weather, and gravity. Players can also determine game rules for modes such as combat, zombie mode and racing, and invite others to participate.
Best of all, created sandboxes can be traded or leased to earn in-game digital assets. Speaking of earning opportunities, PlanetSandbox’s developers intend to introduce token staking early next year, something that’s likely to pique the interest of experienced DeFi users. Here’s a trailer of the game to whet the appetite.
Pocket Arena is a strategy-focused decentralized application (dApp) produced by Swiss mobile game developer Emoji Games. Specializing in skill-based tournaments and user-generated NFT gaming, the venture is behind the immersive Castle Defense release, which should be familiar to fans of empire-building titles.
With over 40 map levels and multiple themes, Castle Defense has a simple premise: build an impregnable fortress and ward off the enemies, which can take the form of wizards, princes, monsters, dragons and knights. Players can get together to form guilds with fellow users, and earn profit from slaying opponents; even the glorious castles can be monetized. With several other titles in the works, Pocket Arena has set a target of reaching 2 million monthly active users by the end of 2021.
Good Games Guild
Good Games Guild (GGG) isn’t just a dApp; it’s a Gaming Hub that aims to create the largest virtual world economy by optimizing its owned assets utility for maximum reward generated. This is to say that in this particular world, all players have a say in how the project operates.
Still in its formative phase, the Guild aims to become a fully-fledged play-to-earn gaming ecosystem, enabling all participants to earn revenue from interacting in the metaverse, including from renting NFTs to be used by the platform’s scholars. There are staking opportunities, too. Interestingly, the GGG recently formed a partnership with the aforementioned PlanetSandbox. What is it they say about a rising tide lifting all boats?
The Killbox is an action-packed, somewhat bloody first-person shooter game in which players assemble elite squads and trade in-game NFT weapons (AK-47s, grenades, swords). Featuring weekly challenges, ranking matches, and a lottery system for the distribution of crypto prizes, The Killbox will probably appeal most to fans of legacy shooter games like Call of Duty.
The Killbox’s gameplay will be interactive with a 360-degree arena combat experience with VR capabilities. Additionally, users can choose from various gameplays, such as sniper and DM mode, while earning rewards from their gameplay. Keep an eye on The Killbox as they get ready to launch their native token to the public market.
Rokosoft is, like the Good Games Guild, building a veritable gaming ecosystem through technological infrastructure for both its own releases and that of partner companies. Metaverse solutions include a P2P marketplace for the trading of in-game collectibles, a native token ($ROCO) integrated into game economies, and open-source software development kits (SDKs) for developers.
The first release to roll off the production line is Rise Online, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) set in a fantastical kingdom. After significant early traction, Rise Online will be at the forefront of Rokosoft’s upcoming public launch, including the introduction of $ROCO to the market.
When we speak about the metaverse movement, we have to highlight the games that have already caught the attention of users around the world. Bemil is one. Officially released on Google Play last quarter, Bemil hit the 15,000 active user mark by the end of August with an impressive 5% daily growth rate.
The game includes a galaxy theme and play-to-earn features that allow players to engage in battles, build clans, play minigames, and more. Led by proven entrepreneur Han Nguyen, the founder of Fado.vn, Bemil’s model is focused on aligning incentives between developers, players, and investors to create a long-lasting experience. Keep an eye on Bemil as they announce more information around an upcoming token sale.
Last but not least is Faraland, an epic metaverse-based RPG built on Binance Smart Chain (BSC). Collectible items such as heroes (humans, orcs, elves, demons, etc) and rare equipment are tokenized, with assets denominated in Binance’s native BNB token. The goal? To prepare and equip your heroes for war, of course. Various play-to-earn mechanisms are built into the metaverse, which supports both direct trading and staking of NFTs.
Competition between these seven projects, and the many others currently emerging, is understandably fierce as the metaverse concept gradually takes hold. If they get their way, these play-to-earn releases with an inbuilt DeFi mechanism will usher in an exciting new era for the gaming industry, and provide a popular use case for NFTs and blockchain into the bargain. Who’d bet against them?
Image by Esa Riutta from Pixabay