The Rise of Crypto Gaming Guilds in Africa by@victorfabusola

The Rise of Crypto Gaming Guilds in Africa

This is a story about the Web3 revolution in Africa through NFT gaming. The virtual assets (NFTs) required to play these games are expensive to purchase. Gaming guilds solve this problem by bringing gamers together, renting NFTs out to them and taking a cut of their earnings. This revenue-sharing program is called a scholarship. By reducing the barrier to entry for these games, he can play them and manage to make a living for himself. While blockchain gaming is popular in Western countries, it's never really seen as a good career path.
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Victor Fabusola

The only interesting fact you should know about me is that I'm obsessed with mental models.

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This is a story about the Web3 revolution in Africa through NFT gaming.


It's midday in the bustling city of Lagos. The city is known for its famous yellow buses, fast lifestyle, and the never say die of the 20 million people who live there. It's also the home of 21-one-year-old Salami, a crypto gamer.


Despite being in his third year studying Physics at the state university, Salami confesses that he currently dedicates almost half of his time to playing crypto play-to-earn games. He also says that he owes his current progress at crypto gaming to a gaming guild he joined late last year.


Unlike traditional gaming guilds, crypto gaming guilds aren't based on a group of gamers just coming together to play games. Instead, crypto gaming guilds are a million-dollar crypto phenomenon. They rose in popularity with the exponential rise in popularity and value of NFTs, and are the only way poor people or people in the global South can play Blockchain play-to-earn games like Axie Infinity, The Sandbox, etc.


The reason is simple; the virtual assets (NFTs) required to play these games are expensive to purchase. While this is a normal barrier to entry for most gamers of any kind — after all, high-end consoles and computers aren't cheap — it's more so for crypto gamers because of prohibitively expensive NFTs. Game consoles could cost hundreds of dollars, but the NFTs needed to play these crypto games could cost thousands of dollars.


These gaming guilds solve this problem by bringing gamers together, renting NFTs out to them, and taking a cut of their earnings. In other words, the gaming guilds help players play expensive games in return for a cut in their earnings. This revenue-sharing program is called a scholarship.


For people in emerging markets like Salami, these gaming guilds are a lifesaver. By reducing the barrier to entry for these games, he can play them and manage to make a living for himself. And it's not only young students like Salami who are getting into the game of crypto gaming.


Because of the precarious economic conditions in Africa, both old and young people all over urban centers in the continent have been learning how to play these games and joining crypto gaming guilds. The fact that their earnings can easily be converted to dollars, an extremely valuable currency unit in the continent, means that gaming is a lot more lucrative for these African players.


It also means that crypto gaming can be a real career path for many African gamers. While blockchain gaming is popular in Western countries, it's never really seen as a good career path. Of course, there are several reasons for this, but the important reason boils down to the odds of success being not very good.


Sure, some game NFTs are worth tens of thousands of dollars — however, a vast majority are worth nothing or will soon be worth nothing. In a world where there are better career paths with more stability and bigger odds for success, treating blockchain gaming as a valid career path will just not work.


However, this dynamic does not exist in Africa. For example, the GDP per capita of most African nations hovers below 5,000 dollars. On the other hand, there's hardly any western country with a GDP per capita lower than 30,000 dollars. What this means, in essence, is that there are very few career paths with more stability and bigger odds for success than crypto gaming in Africa, while the opposite is true for developed nations. In the final analysis, this dynamic guarantees that more Africans will be interested in crypto gaming than in the West.

Africa: The Future Of Gaming Guilds

In 2021, a report by Kucoin affirmed what most analysts already knew; crypto adoption was growing at an unprecedented rate in Africa. Interestingly, this wasn't because of external factors. It was even despite external factors, as poor socioeconomic and regulatory metrics ordinarily meant that crypto adoption would be stunted in Africa.


However, this was not the case. According to the report, crypto adoption grew by 2500% in a single year. Analysts further predicted that this trend will continue for a long while, even if regulatory and economic indices remain opposed to cryptocurrency adoption growth.


With the growth of crypto in Africa came the growth of crypto games. Ordinarily, the adoption of these games would have been met with hesitation.  However, 2020 was a period of an extraordinary bull run in the cryptoverse, and this gave most gamers renewed confidence in the market.


Within mere months, African gamers realized that crypto gaming was a viable industry. They also realized that only a gaming guild can reduce the barrier to entry and make the space attractive for gamers. Thankfully, there were already a few gaming guilds in place for that purpose, and that's how the gaming guild industry in Africa began to grow.


Today, there are loads of gaming guilds in Africa. Some have even been accepted into the Binance Labs accelerator program, and many are poised to interest many crypto VCs. Afriguild is one of those guilds, and the company has been growing exponentially.


The guild is certainly the most ambitious gaming guild in Africa right now, as it aims for the ambitious — but still possible — goal of onboarding a hundred million Africans into the world of Web3 in five years through education, gaming, and community building. The team-building effort of Afriguild is led by some of the brightest lights in the Nigerian Web3 space, including Toyosi Abolarin, and Tomiwa Olajide. And the guild itself is already doing exploits. Despite being only a few months old, Afriguild won 2nd place at the Axie Infinity Game Tournament at the Meta Conference In Dubai.


This win shows that the startup has built a very vibrant network of young gamers, and its repertoire of games and NFTs is expanding by the day. Right now, the startup is still in early-stage funding, but its magnificent team and expanding community mean that it is one of the most promising guilds in the African Web3 space today.


Despite it being a young company, Afriguild has made rather impressive strides in reaching this goal.


The startup has built a very vibrant network of young gamers, and its repertoire of games and NFTs is expanding by the day. While many sincerely doubt that the startup will reach its goal of converting 100 million Africans into the world of Web3 within five years, one must realize that it's merely a matter of 2000% year-on-year growth. That has happened before, and it surely can happen again. Are you looking at the next Yield Guild Games (YGG)? What do you think?

The Future Of African Gamers Today

For young people like Salami, crypto gaming is a lifesaver. Right now, he is pretty confident that his future lies in Web3, whether it's through playing games or participating in some other way.


"I think I've gotten half of all my friends into crypto gaming. Of course, the money isn't a lot. However, while 0.2 BTC or ETH may not be a lot of money in United States Dollars, it's quite a lot in Nigerian Naira. With that you can feed yourself, and even pay your tuition"


He says.


And what about his degree in Physics? Will he still pursue it?


"Of course, I will. But that's just for a degree. The opportunities in Web3 are a lot more profitable than a degree in Physics. And that's not a bad thing — after all, Elon Musk left a graduate degree program at Stanford to build two internet companies."


When asked whether the bear market scares him, Salami just nodded.


"Yes, there might be some economic uncertainty. But there's economic uncertainty everywhere. Didn't a global recession happen in 2008?"


There are thousands or even hundreds of thousands of African gamers on the continent who feel the same way. The only question now is whether time will prove them right or prove them wrong.



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