NFT (Non-Fungible Token) is basically a file format for transferring user content on blockchain network. It converts your assets uniquely by creating a blockchain based unique digital signature that defines ownership of your assets and that can be bought and sold for real money.
While NFTs are hugely gaining popularity in two areas; digital art and digital collection, the bond between NFTs and gaming is ionic. If you want to read more about basics of NFT, I would suggest reading this article.
So What are the Player Needs?
We have already discussed on blockchain games and we might think Implementing NFTs might be easy. But its always a challenge in creating a compelling and immersive ecosystem that can seamlessly enable NFTs in the core gameplay. For that we need to understand what player needs are. I more or less agree with what Aakash Gupta has to say here, but from gaming perspective, gaming needs can be broken down into following aspects:
NFTS Enable Ownership
The sole need here is for glory, bragging rights and exclusivity. Examples can be buying a virtual land in games like Upland, win a championship trophy in monthly contest, win rare cosmetics in tournament or create a competition where winner gets a unique item.
Gameless Platform using NFTs
Currently, when a player leaves the game, there is a regret of not only leaving the game but also leaving the investment player has done over the years (buying items, building characters, creating an empire, collecting unique items etc). Thanks to NFTs, players will be enabled to bring their items into another game.
Imagine Geralt or Rivia sporting a unique and customized look that you created in Witcher 3 and bringing him into Fortnite as your protagonist or Roblox character customized to your preference fighting side by side in PUBG. Even if you want to start over from scratch, NFTs can enable you to sell items from your previous game as ETH (i.e. melting) and invest it in the next game that you are about to start.
Collect and Share Stories.
Players who go after mastery and achievement want to create a trophy section to show their achievements and share stories. Just as the action figures we like to collect and put them on the shelve to see.
Though not a game, but a good example here is NBA top shots by Dapper Labs, which is a good example of collecting best moments and keeping them for display. Just think of it in a gamified manner. Infact, Dapper labs has said that it is developing a game on top of NBA Top Shot. It is expected in the game to build NBA-like rosters to compete in online tournaments.
So, are there any games who have implemented NFTs seamlessly?
Although still in fledgling phase, there have been some decent implementations using NFTs. Here are a few games that you can not only play but also look at their own marketplaces:
Axie Infinity. Game where you possess land and wild animals. Wild animals can also be purchased and sold on their market (Game using Ronin wallet and LOOM coin).
Sorare. A Football fantasy game like Ubisoft’s One Shot League but with focus on Cards and their trading.
Upland. Property trading game mapped on real world where you can buy real properties in virtual and then improve them for staking. You can later sell them for profits
So where is the world going with NFTs? There are two major platforms in NFT space; Enjin and Sandbox. Sandbox has already raised $93M for its NFT-based MetaVerse (A virtual open world associated for NFTs). Moreover, Upland has also been successful in raising $18M
Hypercasual used to be hottest trend in the mobile gaming, but it seems like NFTs will replace it.
Hypercasual did create its impact on gaming world, NFT is going to change how the gaming was done. Its a matter of when will it happen.
If you’re in gaming industry and still haven’t looked at NFTs and its application in games, I would highly recommend to tap into this avenue.
GenITeam Solutions, is leading full service game development agency helping clients builds games from scratch to finish. We are helping various clients build and market, blockchain games. If you are planning to develop blockchain games, please do not hesitate to reach out to experienced game designers for free consultation.