The juicy moment to tell our parents, “You’re wrong!” may finally be here.
Gaming has typically been a pay-to-play-driven industry. While eSports and professional gaming have made full-time gaming a possibility for just a select few, a new trend is bringing professional gaming to the public. This phenomenon is called play-to-earn, also known as GameFi.
What Is GameFi? What Is Play-To-Earn?
GameFi is a broad category of gaming that creates opportunities to profit for players through play-to-earn games operated on a blockchain. More specifically, play-to-earn are blockchain-based games that allow players to farm or collect crypto-assets like NFTs through gameplay. The stronger the player or the more time that a game is played, the more crypto-assets a player will typically earn. GameFi and play-to-earn are exciting new developments in both the gaming market and cryptosphere — and players are making fortunes raking in NFTs, while games and guilds (more on this later) are raking in funding. It’s a win-win for everyone!
How Do Play-to-Earn Crypto Games Work?
Traditionally, games were about driving revenue to the developers that made them. Developers would sell the game for a fee — or provide it for free and then offer in-game purchases for players to access add-on features.
GameFi developers have completely revolutionized the economic model for gaming by swapping out “in-game purchases” for “non-fungible tokens (“NFTs”),” which in this case are typically characters, lands, weapons, or other accessories. In these player-owned ecosystems, players are able to mint, purchase, and sell NFTs, which can be used to play the game and, in turn, earn more NFTs. By running these games on a blockchain, the blockchain also serves to verify players’ unique ownership of the items within the game.
What these games share in common is the opportunity to earn NFTs through gameplay — though, the monetization model that each game offers can differ. Let’s look at some of the major players to get a sense of how these games are played and how players get paid to game.
With over $2.6 billion in NFT trading volume, Axie Infinity is one of the top play-to-earn games today. Developed by a Vietnamese studio, Sky Mavis, Axie Infinity appears to be a reconstructed take on the Nintendo classic, Pokémon. Within the game, players can breed (mint), trade, and battle Axies, which are Pokémon-esque cartoon monsters. Each Axie comes with varying attributes and strengths, and players face off in turn-based combat to secure victory. By winning battles, players can earn in-game currency, which can either be sold on the open market for fiat currency or used in-game to breed new money machines — more Axies.
Other top GameFi games, like Cryptoblades, have opted to include a yield farming approach to allow their users to compound gains. Developed by Riveted Games on the Binance Smart Chain, Cryptoblades is a play-to-earn NFT RPG game, in which players can mint unique characters, battle other players, and raid villages. Successful battles and raids will score players some sweet $SKILL, the game’s native coin. As players progress through the game, defeating higher level characters will net increasingly higher payouts.
From there, players can recruit more characters, forge and reforge weapons to optimize them. Or, for players with a hefty horde of $SKILL, they can stake their tokens to compound passive income or cash out on exchanges for fiat currency.
You no longer have to be a professional in order to make money with eSports. In fact, many games have opted to reconstruct eSport gaming styles on the blockchain. Developed by WolfFun, Thetan Arena is a classic multiplayer online battle arena (“MOBA”) style game, in which you can gather your friends, form a team, and battle with others. Players battle with heroes, which are avatars that fall under three different categories based on their skill: Tank, Assassin, or Marksman. Impressively, in true liberalized fashion, there is no barrier to entry for Thetan Arena. Players can opt to join the game with a free hero in order to start earning $THC, the game’s native token, and then later purchase a Premium Hero with earnings. Players can also sell and trade their Premium Heroes to earn extra income.
With opportunities abound for play-to-earn gaming, why not earn through multiple games? Unfortunately, many gamers find themselves limited by rising entry costs into new games, due to the cost of minting necessary avatars, characters, or other NFTs that are required to initially join a game. Also, as shown by primary examples like Axie Infinity, Cryptoblades, and Thetan Arena, these games are spread out across various blockchains, making it difficult for players to carry their crypto wealth when they make the switch. However, there’s a solution to these issues: Kyoko.Finance.
Kyoko offers a cross-chain lending platform, in which guilds and players can lend or borrow digital NFT assets. If you or your guild have unused resources for Cryptoblades on the Binance Smart Chain and are looking to make the switch over to Axie Infinity on its own private game chain named Ronin, you can easily lock in or list your unused assets on Kyoko and borrow your desired NFTs for the Ronin blockchain. Put your unused assets to work while lowering your barrier to entry into new games to keep the cash flowing; it’s that easy!
How Much Can You Make with GameFi?
Early adopters of the GameFi movement have shown tremendous success in terms of real-world earnings. Axie Infinity, for example, has reported that the average player is raking in $400 monthly through gameplay. Though, some famous success cases have really turned heads. For example, John Aaron Ramos, a 22-year-old Filipino, went viral on social media after reportedly buying two homes solely based off of his earnings from the Axie Infinity game.
Top Play-to-Earn Games Gross Millions in Monthly Volumes
Millionaires have already been made through GameFi, and the future holds plentiful bounty as more games and players join the craze. Daily, we are seeing upwards of 80–100 million in-game transactions, and, monthly, there are upwards of 70 newly released play-to-earn crypto games. Don’t miss out on the opportunities abound, and, if your parents get on your case about how video gaming does not pay the bills, be sure to point them to this article.
Kyoko.Finance is a cross-chain GameFi NFT lending market for guilds and players. Kyoko’s Guild-to-Guild lending, P2P NFT lending, and cross-chain asset lending platform aims to solve the most pressing issues challenging the GameFi market, including the rising cost of entry and siloed in-game assets across different blockchains. Kyoko’s metaverse will also allow Guilds to display their history, progress, and other accomplishments, while players can connect with others in a world that can be built in, developed, and sold off.
Follow Kyoko at the links below to stay up to date on upcoming events, releases, and news.