For better or worse, one of the most popular words in the gaming landscape right now is “blockchain”. Blockchain games, crypto games, NFT games – whatever feels most appropriate works. While the Web3 community believes that gaming may be the biggest driving force in bringing mainstream Web3, gamers themselves have long resisted the idea.
In the wider gaming community, blockchain games do not receive the highest respect. But why? For most gamers, the issue may have nothing to do with environmental concerns or the looming threat of bad faith actors licking their paws at any mention of the word “blockchain.” The problem could be that there are no blockchain games really capable of capturing the mainstream gaming market at the moment.
The triple A problem
Does this mean that blockchain games are inherently bad? Absolutely not. They simply cannot compete with the mainstream gaming industry’s ability to capture the attention of the majority of gamers. At least not yet.
Gamers looking to relax and have a good time only want one thing: a great gaming experience. So where do they go to look for new games? On online gaming marketplaces for the platform of your choice.
Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo, the three biggest players in console gaming, have home markets. On the other hand, PC gamers have options like Steam or the Epic Games Store. But what all of these digital storefronts have in common is that the games featured on their covers are big-budget, triple-A gaming experiences created by some of the most experienced and talented developers in the industry. And, of course, the players do not get tired of them.
That’s not just a general assessment of what players want. NPD’s report on the best-selling games of 2022 so far suggests these types of games sell and sell Really right. A lot of this comes down to trust. That is, trusting that games submitted by big publishers will work, come with a certain degree of polish, and of course be fun. Name recognition also plays a role: Starting this year alone, returning fans of long-running franchises like Obligations, grand tourerand even star Wars he gladly parted with his money to play new entries in these franchises that came out this year.
Invest in gaming culture before money
So if all blockchain game developers have to do to appeal to mainstream gaming audiences is make a triple-A game, why don’t they do that? Funding will certainly not be a problem. In Web3, specifically the NFT space, projects regularly raise millions of dollars in funding, with some initiatives even hitting the eight-figure ballpark. The thing is, you need a lot more than cash to make a good game. You need to know how to make a good game, and that means creative drive, talent, and skill.
But above all, it is also necessary want to make a good game, full stop. Crypto veteran and budding blockchain game developer Roy Blackstone believes that many blockchain game developers hoping to release the next big play-to-earn (P2E) game don’t. “The problem is the video game industry. Now it’s so big that there are essentially hundreds of billions of dollars to be made. All this money is at stake, and [that isn’t encouraging] players come and build games. It’s attracting people who see dollar signs,” she now said in an interview with nft.
These types of new entrants into the blockchain gaming space are people who have “never played a video game in their life,” Blackstone added. Sadly, Blackstone said this mentality has affected the mainstream gaming industry as well. Even on Web2, game developers have resorted to increasingly predatory monetization tactics in hopes of getting players to spend as much time and money on their games as possible.
“I think it’s causing a lot of… I mean degradation [in gaming]. I mean, assassin’s Creed is a perfect example, right? like maybe even black flag [it was] fairly good. But then it’s been the same game ever since, which sucks,” Blackstone said. “It’s this whole philosophy of ‘the more time we can get players to spend in our game, the better. So let’s give them a bunch of daily quests and stuff. [other] things that waste time. So it’s just bad design.”
Mighty Bear Games CEO Simon Davis has a different perspective: “There’s nothing inherently wrong with live service free-to-play games with the microtransaction model: it lowers the barrier to entry and allows players who might not otherwise they could pay full price for a game so they can start playing and have fun,” he said in an interview with nft now.
The role of playing and winning
Of course, not all developers in the blockchain gaming space are acting as cynically as those described by Blackstone. “Gamers who put in the time and effort don’t benefit when a game or developer is successful and the developers’ goals don’t always align with those of the players,” Davis said.
Instead of focusing solely on profit margins, a sizeable number of blockchain game developers believe this new technology will benefit players in the long run. “The advent of Web3 has for the first time enabled an unprecedented level of transparency between us as developers and our players. Players are now stakeholders as well and will tangibly benefit from the popularity and growth of the game over time. There will also be a fairer distribution of loot between developer and players, and this will build trust, increase engagement, and create new opportunities between both parties over time,” said Davis.
With the upcoming release of Mighty Bear Games’ mighty action heroesDavis hopes the upcoming title will provide the gaming industry with a new model that rewards players for their skills. And it won’t be another P2E game either. “We want to create games that players enjoy and have the option to earn assets if they play well or rank high on the leaderboards. The old’ [P2E game] The model also has a sustainability issue, where most utility tokens are inflationary by design. A play-and-win model will create a more sustainable ecosystem for gamers with, hopefully, [fewer] fluctuations in asset prices. This is definitely more player friendly as it skews the rewards towards active players rather than speculators,” said Davis.
The waiting game begins
In Web2 and Web3, game development is no joke. Regardless of a developer’s intent, creating a game, let alone an entire triple-A title, is a long and arduous process. Projects like NFT Worlds seemed well aware of this, building their bet on the virtual land craze into what are essentially just Minecraft mods. Following Minecraft’s outright ban on all blockchain integration, NFT Worlds has to redo everything on its own.
Throwing blockchain integration into the mix just adds another potential pain point for developers and gamers alike. “There is a friction that is inherent in getting into Web3 products,” ZED RUN co-director Jason Melo said in an interview with nft now. “Having to set up a wallet, fund the wallet, and acquire an asset are tasks that the general public is still learning. All of these things are foreign to people who are used to traditional web experiences.”
Regardless of how fun or polished a blockchain game might be, how you integrate blockchain technology into the overall experience could play an equal role in the success of the next big blockchain game. Playing and winning is just the beginning: the most thoughtful and frictionless integration of blockchain in a game may be discovered. “I think once a web3 crypto game comes out that has the right formula, it will be very obvious,” Blackstone said. “Once it comes out, people will look at them and say, ‘ah, why don’t we think about this?‘ – One ‘aha’ moment.”