Blockchain technology is leading to never-before-seen gaming models that are disrupting the industry. Gaming has always been one of the most exciting industries out there, constantly evolving and taking us deeper into an immersive virtual world. With blockchain, it is going further than any one of us could have predicted and beginning to prepare us for the next big leap — the metaverse!
Blockchain is revolutionizing gaming from top-to-bottom, and there are so many new models being introduced. Before we dive into those, let’s look at how far the modern gaming industry has come since its inception.
Ping Pong to the Metaverse
Did you know that the first recognized example of a game machine dates all the way back to…1940! At the time, Dr. Edward Uhler Condon unveiled a game based on the ancient mathematical game of Nim, and it was only played by about 50,000 people during a period of six months.
Gaming didn’t hit commercial homes for another 27 years, at which point Ralph Baer released the “Brown Box” in 1967. Connected to a television set, the device could be programmed with games like ping pong and checkers.
We would never be able to fit the entire timeline of gaming into this one article, but following the “Brown Box,” the industry witnessed arcade gaming with Atari, the multiplayer gaming craze, the mass adoption of home gaming, personal computer gaming, a major North American video games crash due to market saturation, online console gaming, and mobile gaming. We are now witnessing the next step in this evolutionary process with blockchain technology and the metaverse!
Not only did the market evolve in types of games available to consumers, but also in the way consumers paid for their games. Starting out as a one-time payment to purchase a game, the market was eventually dominated by subscription models, then free-to-play games, and now play-to-earn games.
Perhaps the biggest contribution blockchain is making to the gaming industry at the moment is the ushering in of a new “play-to-earn” model. Current gaming models are heavily reliant on in-game purchases, which can divide the community and create an unfair environment in many cases. When these current models are implemented the wrong way or abused, it creates a “pay-to-win” system. This also discourages new players from trying out a game.
Where’s the fun in that?
With blockchain technology and NFTs, the new play-to-earn models are based on real asset ownership. Instead of spending money on gaming items that have no-real world value, and only serve to one-up your fellow gamers, blockchain technology allows you to invest in assets that can rise in value and be sold on secondary markets.
The gaming industry has seen some major data breaches over the last few years, leading many consumers to be weary of some of the major platforms. Even tech giants like Google and Apple, which many believe to have some of the best security measures, have been hit hard.
Here are some of the most notable incidents:
- Popular virtual pet platform WebKinz was compromised when a hacker accessed 23 million usernames and passwords.
- Nintendo suffered a data breach that involved 300,000 accounts. Hackers gained access to users’ stored payment methods, including credit cards and PayPal accounts.
- 1.3 million user records from the popular MMO game Stalker Online showed up on dark web forums after the game server was hacked.
- Game developer Zynga, who is responsible for games like Words with Friends and Farmville, suffered a breach when 200 million Android and IOS users’ login credentials were stolen. This data could then be used for spam emailing, scams, and phishing attempts.
The major advantage that blockchain gaming has over these other models is that many of the games only require cryptocurrency to play. Since owning crypto inside a wallet provides no personal information, you can play these games anonymously, meaning there is no risk of your personal data being compromised.
One of the most exciting aspects of modern gaming is that it gives us the ability to create a gaming profile. It’s a virtual version of ourselves that we use to interact with others. What if, instead of having to create a new profile for each individual game, you could create a single, integrated profile that could be used across various gaming portals? That’s exactly what blockchain technology enables.
These integrated profiles lead to an even more interactive and interconnected gaming universe, where you could focus on creating the best virtual version of yourself.
A New Type of Gaming
Blockchain technology isn’t just adding on to the existing gaming industry, but rather completely revolutionizing and changing what gaming is. It is creating a more interactive, secure, fun, and smooth gaming experience.
The biggest impact it will have on the average player? They can earn rewards while playing, independent of their experience level. Many of us believed that the only way you could receive compensation for playing games was by being a professional tournament player. But this is no longer the case!
With these new gaming models, the industry will attract massive amounts of new players from all around the globe. We are going to look back on those days of ping pong and arcade gaming with disbelief over how far the industry has come!