NFTs are everywhere right now. It’s hard to traverse the crypto landscape – or even the non-crypto landscape – without encountering NFTs in some capacity. Art; real estate; digital collectibles; you name it, it’s being traded and auctioned off as non-fungible tokens. Quite where the trend will end is anyone’s guess, but given that someone just spent $7.5 million on a pixelated CryptoPunk, it seems NFTs have still got some way to run.
One industry that has natural synergies with NFTs, and where much of the innovation is occurring, is gaming. From enabling in-game items to be freely traded, to supporting the sale of virtual land in metaverses, NFTs are being ingeniously applied to provide provable ownership in digital lands where resources are programmed to be as scarce – and thus valuable – as their real-world counterparts.
Blockchain technology gives users the ability to verifiably buy, sell, earn, and exchange tokens in a digital ecosystem. This allows people to earn income in new ways, something that VulcanVerse is now bringing to the gaming world. With the explosion of NFTs and alluring virtual universes bringing in a new wave of players, blockchain-based games where users can monetize their skills have started to take off. Although many blockchain games are still relatively rudimentary, only allowing for very basic functionality, VulcanVerse has created an entire MMO ecosystem where users can fight, undertake quests, work together, and play in a universe with a deep and all-encompassing fantasy lore.
VulcanVerse takes the traditional dynamics of a fantasy MMO and gives it a blockchain twist, allowing users full ownership over all in-game assets bought or generated. The project originally launched on Vechain Thor, but has chosen to move to the more NFT-friendly Polygon network (previously Matic). Buoyed by the rapid growth of NFTs, VulcanVerse has increased its trading volume from around $10,000 to over $6 million. This increase can be partly attributed to its migration to a more suitable network in Polygon and the continued speculation on the value of NFTs.
VulcanVerse is demonstrating the viability of the play-to-earn economy, which allows gamers to earn a living or side income by producing value-adding in-game assets. The concept, at least, makes perfect sense.
For example, if someone spends 20 hours completing a hard mission to earn a rare item, they can quantify the skill and man-hours it took to obtain that item and sell it on the open market if they wish.
A robust secondary market is generated around popular games with interested users, giving full autonomy and decision-making power to individual gamers.
Traditionally, game development was left at the sole discretion of its dev team, but this is now starting to change through titles such as VulcanVerse. The project has introduced an innovative new feature known as Create Your Own Quest (CYOQ), which, as you've probably guessed, allows gamers to design their own adventures for themselves and others to undertake. With PYR, VulcanVerse’s native cryptocurrency that powers its gaming economy, users can create their own quest or adventure once they obtain a level 7 land plot within the game.
Users can earn PYR by completing various quests and tasks, rewarding gamers with tangible value for their efforts. By combining the collection of NFTs in the form of items, creatures, and land, as well as the ability to earn a real currency and design your own in-game outcomes, VulcanVerse is redefining how developers and gamers can approach online games.
VulcanVerse isn't limiting its gaming metaverse solely to the digital world, as the team is collaborating with some of the top gaming fantasy writers in the industry to introduce its gaming lore as a full-length book series. With hard copy fantasy and a breadth of lore history important for the long-term success of an MMO, this will help VulcanVerse bridge the gap between the traditional gaming community and its own ecosystem.
Teaming up with famous authors behind series such as Fabled Lands, Fighting Fantasy, and Way of the Tiger, VulcanVerse plans to release a series of five books in Q1 of 2021, taking a deep dive into their gaming lore and “history.” As the hype behind NFTs continues to grow and more people begin to understand that they can make money while having fun gaming, multiverses like VulcanVerse will form the hub around which a thriving digital economy revolves.
Disclaimer: This material is not sponsored by any organization mentioned in the article.
Lead image via IGDB.