The State of Crypto in Gaming

The discussion on cryptocurrency and blockchain has been gaining traction ever since Bitcoin’s value rose to record heights in 2017, from $900 to just shy of $20,000 per coin. Cryptocurrency and the blockchain have already emerged in several business circles, including healthcare, financial services, and food.

One area that cryptocurrency is also seeing growth in is gaming. The two are a good match, considering how both communities are tech savvy and that there are several areas wherein the two could naturally cross over. But adoption in gaming is slower than in the industries mentioned above, and the integration is still largely at its infancy. Nevertheless, there is major potential for crypto in the gaming world, and here’s where things are currently at:

Gaming ICO Projects

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are essentially tokens in the form of new cryptocurrency that startups offer to investors in exchange for existing cryptocurrencies. ICOs are applauded for their high liquidity as well as their openness, as anyone who wants to can invest.

A good number of ICO projects are set to transform gaming this year. ALAX, for instance, is aimed at helping emerging markets in the mobile gaming industry with the use of blockchain, while Flux Gaming ICO plans to monetize games for both developers and players with blockchain technology.

Rise of Gaming dApps

A dApp is short for decentralized app, as it has a back-end code that runs on a decentralized peer-to-peer network. The edge that dApps have over regular apps is that they are more stable, autonomous, and secure thanks to the blockchain technology behind them. DApps also employ digital currencies as a medium of exchange.

An impressive range of gaming dApps have emerged in recent years, paving the way for gaming enthusiasts to be more familiar with cryptocurrency. A popular gaming dApp at present is Gods Unchained, which is a trading card game set up on the Ethereum blockchain. Here, players can buy or trade cards using ERC271 tokens. There is also EtherCraft, a decentralized RPG where players can trade in-game items that adhere to the ERC20 token standard.

Blockchain-based Games

Cryptocurrencies run on blockchain technology, or a decentralized public ledger of digital transactions. Both rising and established game developers are currently seeking ways to integrate blockchain into gaming and take advantage of the technology’s many benefits.

For instance, video gaming giant Atari has recently partnered with a blockchain startup in an effort to re-launch its mobile games. Titles like RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch and Goon Squad will get blockchain integration and will be distributed globally.

In a similar vein, the world’s most popular gaming franchises are also adapting to the cryptocurrency hype. A feature article by Sandlot Games listed some of the bestselling online games in 2018, which include Overwatch, League of Legends, DOTA 2, and Minecraft. In addition, among those listed are the titles that are at the center of the battle royale craze — Fortnite and PUBG. Any move made by these games would have a significant impact on how cryptocurrency is accepted in gaming, given their immense popularity. League of Legends, for example, now allows players to earn cryptocurrency for simply playing or winning. This is possible through the integrated blockchain system known as Refereum. Then, there’s the Overwatch team, which created their own currency for fans who want to purchase character skins based on the Overwatch League teams. A portion of the crypto sale will go the team that the skin represents.

Overall, these highlights, though impressive on their own, are still the beginning. Baby steps for cryptocurrency have been made, and given a few more years we may well see its full potential in the gaming sphere as the technology continues its development.

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