Market experts believe that the play-to-earn (P2E) gaming model will soon dominate the video gaming industry. As per the data available for 2020, video gaming was the most profitable sub-segment within the entertainment industry space. The NPD group measured it to have grown by $57 billion in revenue, exceeding the movie and music industries’ growth.
In consumer spending, games occupied a market space of $116 billion worldwide. One of the fastest-growing sub-categories in this space was blockchain-powered gaming. Estimates suggest that it will rise to nearly $40 billion by the time we reach 2025. P2E gaming, or decentralized gaming powered by blockchain, is helping expand the market faster and spreading its benefits to the end-users, the real stakeholders of the process – the gaming community.
Algorand, one of the leading blockchain platforms in the DeFi space, is now bursting onto the emerging play-to-earn (P2E) gaming scene. It announced its intention to establish a niche in the blockchain gaming space by joining an association of gaming and blockchain companies known as Blockchain Game Alliance.
Gaming on Algorand
As of 2022, developers still rely on a plethora of different blockchains to build P2E games. Popular names include the world’s biggest smart contract platform Ethereum, as well as next-generation blockchains like Solana and Algorand. And if you believe Piergiacomo Palmisani of Algorand Foundation, game developers serious about making legacy games should look at Algorand as the go-to blockchain.
As the Ecosystem Development Manager explains, “Algorand is a high-performing, secure, carbon-neutral blockchain that never forks and never goes down – a natural fit for the next generation of AAA games.”
Now, it seems that P2E enthusiasts have caught on to the idea that Algorand’s unique blockchain architecture might be superior to other available solutions. As Dean from Algo Gaming Guild says, “the current Algorand gaming ecosystem is incredibly exciting to be a part of. As we are still in the early stages, there are new and amazing projects being revealed all the time. There are still so many opportunities for new games and even tools to support an eventually thriving ecosystem such as launchpads, guilds, and marketplaces.”
He further adds that “this journey is really starting to ramp up and the future’s looking bright. The Algorand community combined with the technical advantages of the blockchain will evolve into an ecosystem that everyone will want to be a part of and one that we will be even prouder to be involved in.”
The year of the breakthrough?
With P2E games being on the verge of mainstream adoption, Palmisani is convinced that 2022 will prove to be a turning point for the Algorand gaming ecosystem. “We saw impressive growth, with the launch of several DeFi protocols and a vibrant NFT community [in 2022]. Gaming is catching up with a few games already launched and many more to come in the next months,” he explains. An increasing number of developers are now seeing Algorand as the best protocol to build the crypto components of their games.
With dozens of talented developers flocking to the protocol, it is no surprise that a new wave of exciting games could soon become available to the masses. As Palmisani puts it, the initial wave of games sparked the light for innovation. However, he admits that it also attracted plenty of skepticism from the gaming industry and its community. “Oftentimes, rightfully so,” he says.
As the new generation of P2E games revealing its plan, skeptics now appear to be rethinking their attitudes. In the past few months, several exciting games with high potential have joined the Algorand gaming ecosystem. This includes the monster-inspired trading card game Alchemon, Algorand Casino, and a game that allows players to do skill-based wagers on outcomes, dubbed ZCircuit, among others.
Caption: the Algorand gaming ecosystem
Still, the release of a few promising games won’t establish Algorand as the world’s best infrastructure for play-to-earn. The current list of Algorand-based games, although extensive, lacks the x-factor. What Algorand needs is an Axie Infinity. Simply put, it needs a project that is fun and rewarding enough to attract hundreds of thousands, if not millions of players.
The race is on
Every developer wants to put out the best game yet. In reality, though, only a few will actually achieve widespread adoption. Within the Algorand ecosystem, where no project may yet declare itself as the leader of the bunch, developers have now entered a race to create the first mass-adopted product.
But even though the name is play-to-earn, a growing number of blockchain gamers are complaining about the simplicity and, to put it bluntly, tediousness of most P2E games on the market. As veteran game developer Michael Robert shares on Twitter, “if you’re only playing to earn, then it’s not play it’s work.”
P2E games according to science are less fun. If you’re only playing to earn, then it’s not play it’s work. A more organic approach is putting fun first. Giving players ownership in what they unlock. Intrinsic motivators on a random release schedule. Game design 101 #Metaverse
— Papa Nut (Michael Roberts) (@MichaelRRoberts) February 10, 2022
The essential requirement for a good game is that it should be fun to play, no matter if it is a P2E game or not. It is critical to strike a balance between monetization and fun to reach the masses. Without this balance, P2E games will fail to get the desired traction, which will render them commercial failures.
This, of course, also applies to Algorand-based games. So far, none of the existing options has made it to mass adoption. And while many factors play into this, one would be forgiven to think that the currently available games just aren’t good enough.
In 2022, this issue could finally be resolved. Observers were able to spot a variety of promising and experienced developers preparing a game release on Algorand. One project that has seemingly stood out to experts and the press is Cosmic Champs.
As U.Today journalist Vladislav Sopov writes, “Cosmic Champs is among the most technically advanced game designs on Algorand (ALGO) so far.” Moreover, Bitcoinist’s Steven Hay describes the project as “a play-to-earn game that’s actually fun to play,” speculating that the fast-paced, action-packed mobile experience will be outstanding.
CoinMarketCap.com, the world’s biggest crypto platform, even added Cosmic Champs to its shortlist of the best NFT games of the year.
Play, not work
Cosmic Champs seems different from other P2E games because it doesn’t try to create a P2E game, but a state-of-the-art game that happens to offer earning mechanics. Designed for mobile devices, the title delivers a fast-paced, 3D gameplay that incorporates various mechanics from some of the most popular video games of the previous years, such as Clash Royale.
Being a blockchain-powered game, the developers also cleverly incorporated NFTs and even a unique token into the gameplay. Cosmic Champs is full of playable NFT-based characters, spaceships, and other items that give players an edge during fierce battles in the vast cosmos of Cosmic Champs.
Players can start the game by building a crew of eight champs to begin their journey, which will take them to intense battles. Whoever wins will be rewarded with Cosmic Gold ($COSG), the token that fuels the Cosmic Champs space verse.
The token, which is set to launch on April 21, 2022, also comes with several other features, such as staking or making in-game purchases – similar to the in-game currencies of traditional games like League of Legends or Fortnite.
Caption: Cosmic Champs champions and spaceship NFT cards
That said, to maintain its community focus, Cosmic Champs already announced the plan to establish a decentralized autonomous organization or DAO around its business. In a nutshell, this means that any alteration in the game requires the support of the majority of the community.
If any proposal suggesting changes to any part of the game fails to secure the majority vote, it won’t be considered. Even Cosmic Champs’ founding team has no special powers in this regard.
The future of P2E
Despite the recent influx of new P2E games, blockchain gaming is far from mature. Ambitious entrepreneurs are competing on a global scale and across multiple blockchains to climb to the top of the industry. With Cosmic Champs, Algorand may now have a worthy ambassador to rival the most popular Ethereum-based games. With the upcoming token launch and beta release, P2E fans may look forward to an exciting few weeks and months in the Cosmic Champs community.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.
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