What Blockchain Gaming Needs to do to Join the Ranks of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo
The blockchain space has seen exponential growth over the last decade. The space has gone from a niche corner of the internet only attracting tech and finance enthusiasts to being adopted by some of the world’s largest companies and personalities. However, there is still a long way to go before blockchain and digital assets can be considered mainstream.
One sector with the most potential to reach mass adoption is blockchain gaming. The sector has grown rapidly recently, with the number of blockchain games doubling in the past year.
While blockchain gaming has flirted with the traditional, mainstream gaming industry, it has yet to really push through and become an integral part. For the space to survive, it needs to progress past being used exclusively by enthusiasts and be adopted by a more mainstream audience.
What exactly is needed for blockchain gaming to be a part of the larger, traditional ecosystem and appear on Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft’s gaming platforms?
A Step in the Right Direction
Many big-name names from the traditional gaming industry have already dipped their toes into the blockchain gaming space, mainly through NFTs.
There have been many examples of the traditional gaming industry integrating blockchain features. Some of the more prominent ones would be Ubisoft’s NFT platform, Sega registering the ‘ Sega NFT’ trademark in Japan, and Epic Games allowing NFT games on its platform.
The most recent news is GameStop’s new NFT marketplace which has already seen tremendous growth, reaching over 5,000 Ethereum or around $7.2 million in trading volume since its launch on July 11. This more than double competitor and digital asset veteran Coinbase’s all-time NFT volume, quickly establishing the game retailer as a significant figure within the space.
Many other massive names in gaming have already spoken about plans to integrate NFTs and blockchain into big-budget games. Most notable would be publisher 2K stating that the next Grand Theft Auto, easily one of the biggest names in all of gaming, will have NFT integration.
Though many big names within gaming have or have plans to join the blockchain space, many roadblocks still need to be overcome before mass adoption is reached.
What Is Preventing the Further Progression?
Though there have been many attempts to bring NFTs to the mainstream gaming audience, it seems to keep stopping short — why is that?
One of the more significant issues is that most traditional gamers are against monetization in games, especially those they have already purchased.
The gaming industry has been vocal about its distaste for aggressive monetization, seen especially by the ‘ loot box’ issue that has been going on for many years. Loot boxes are essentially slots that allow players to win in-game items. This can be seen as gambling, causing many to be outraged by having such activity in products initially designed for children.
However, loot boxes give access to digital in-game assets that are nothing more than cosmetic or provide an advantage within the one game they are won in. As many know, blockchain gaming, while similar, also allows users to take their in-game items and sell them, use them in other games, and more.
The most crucial step needed for blockchain gaming to reach the same level as traditional gaming is education. Many still believe that blockchain and digital assets are a scam, with some still spreading the notion that print screening an NFTs is the same as owning it.
The mainstream audience will need to be educated about the value blockchain can add to their games to feel that it is a worthwhile addition and not simply another tactic for developers to make money.
Where to go From Here?
While education is one of the essential factors in blockchain gaming reaching the next step, it is just the beginning.
The games are among the most significant differences between blockchain and traditional gaming. Blockchain gaming tends to be less interactive as players engage in passive combat, racing, and more. Within traditional games, players learn the game’s mechanics and put them to use in fast-paced interactive experiences that keep them engaged.
Graphically, blockchain games are far behind traditional games, making them an even harder sell. Gaming tends to be at the cutting edge of consumer technology, integrating photo-realistic graphics. At the same time, most blockchain games resemble phone games that could’ve existed 10–15 years ago.
For blockchain gaming to join the ranks of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, they will need to build a game that naturally integrates NFTs in a meaningful way while also utilizing well-establish game mechanics used in the traditional gaming space, all while having cutting-edge graphics that pull players in.