Blockchains for NFT-powered Games
A number of blockchains either have existing games with non-fungible tokens — or have announced an intention to support games. This article covers the major options.
Updated: September 13, 2021. Added Solana and Binance Smart Chain.
If you don’t know why you’d want to include an NFT in your game, or if you have questions about how they work, check out Game Economics, Part 2: NFTs and Digital Collectives.
If you’re planning to include NFTs in your game, here is a summary:
A few factors to consider:
- What marketplaces are available to provide point-of-sale, liquidity or exchanges between players? This is important for unlocking money on the networks, enabling purchases and even supporting the discovery of your game.
- What are the fees on the blockchain? (hint: usually unreasonably high for most games on Ethereum today — and very low or even free on the other options)
- Do you plan to lazily mint NFTs (i.e., mint only when the player wishes to withdraw an item) or mint everything? Will you be minting a subset of special blockchain items or every single item? Will you pre-mint the items you plan to issue (i.e., storing them in a special vault wallet)? Depending on your choices here, it will impact how important the cost structure and network throughput are to you.
The choice of a blockchain is not only a technical and pricing decision, but one of user experience and funding. For that reason, make sure you try out a game on the networks you’re considering.
Directory of the Blockchains for Gaming NFTs
Here are links to all of the NFT-based content on the official websites of each pf the projects mentioned above:
- Ethereum Non-fungible tokens
- Flow Non-fungible tokens
- Worldwide Asset Exchange (WAX)
- Enjin Platform
- Building NFTs on Algorand
- Theta Network Token Items
- Avalanche — Create an NFT
- Binance Smart Chain — Deploy an NFT
- Polygon (formerly Matic) FAQ
If you’re building a blockchain game, I’d love to hear from you! Let me know about your game in the comments.