Beginner’s guide into blockchain gaming
Since the creation of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies, a plethora of different opportunities and new experiences emerged in several industries and markets, but all of them based on the same principle: decentralized control.
These cryptocurrencies were developed to function as decentralized assets stored on digital ledgers, under strong cryptography that makes them virtually unhackable. They are not controlled by banking institutions or government agencies, and were only made possible by the creation of blockchains.
The world’s first blockchain was created way back in 2008, by a group of developers under the name Satoshi Nakamoto, to act as the transaction ledger for Bitcoin and to be managed by peer-to-peer networks. Within a blockchain, records are called blocks, and each one contains a cryptographic hash of the previous block, timestamps, and permanent transaction data; a process that makes blockchains incredibly resistant to modification of their data. Bitcoin was the first functional cryptocurrency, and the first to use a blockchain, however, today there are several other cryptos in many exchanging platforms and digital wallets.
Finally, we get to blockchain games, or crypto games. A new genre that has been revolutionizing the gaming world, blockchain gaming allows players to have total control over every aspect of the game, from account information to in-game items and assets. All content is owned by the players, and cannot be operated or supervised by anyone else. Blockchain games are also decentralized, and content rights are held by users, instead of developers and publishers, which gives players the possibility of monetizing their content within these games.
As blockchain technologies are continuously improved, many exciting new games are under development, offering gamers a whole new world of possibilities. But to join these gaming experiences, players must follow a few simple steps before choosing which game to play.
Exchanges and wallets
Before you start playing blockchain games, you’ll need some money in the form of a cryptocurrency stored in a proper digital wallet. Digital wallets, or e-wallets, are applications or devices that store some form of currency on a desktop or mobile app, hardware devices, or even in the cloud. For real money, there are popular services like PayPal or Apple Wallet, but for cryptocurrencies, there are specific wallets to store these cryptographic keys, such as Exodus and the hardware wallet Ledger Nano.
After choosing the wallet that best suits your needs, it’s time to trade money for one of the many cryptocurrencies available today. Since most blockchain games are based on the Ethereum blockchain, Ether is required to play, and it can be acquired through a cryptocurrency exchange. There are several exchange services operating in the market, and each one offers different features, and fees that vary depending on the market’s activity. Some of the most popular exchanges today are Kraken and Coinbase, the oldest active exchange, having been launched in 2012.
Time to play!
Since blockchain games are still something new, the list of titles is somewhat limited, with many games featuring collectible-like gameplays, such as cards and virtual pets. The first crypto game to get players’ attention was CryptoKitties, released in 2017. In this game, you can collect, breed, buy, and sell virtual cats, with similar mechanics to the popular 90s toy Tamagotchi.
Even though CryptoKitties is not as popular as it was in 2017, there are several games with the same gameplay that are attracting a lot of users. With more than 170,000 active users last month, My DeFi Pet also has a collectible gameplay, with the addition of a battle system with play-to-earn features. The game is based on the Binance Smart Chain, and generated almost US$60 million last month.
If collecting virtual cats and monsters isn’t your thing, there are also incredible adventure games like The Sandbox. Based on the Ethereum blockchain and developed by Animoca Brands, The Sandbox is a new gaming experience in which players can build virtual worlds, create interactive adventures, and monetize all content created with the game’s own cryptocurrency called SAND. The game has a revolving metaverse, allowing players to have total control over governance decisions, in a fully decentralized environment.
Certainly one of the most popular crypto games in the past few months, CryptoBlades is a role-playing game developed by Riveted Games, and based on the Binance Smart Chain, in which players create characters to battle monsters, craft weapons and items, participate in raids, and trade their items in the game’s own decentralized marketplace. According to DappRadar, the game recorded more than 600,000 active users last month.