To the Metaverse and Beyond: The Future of Gaming and Social Media by@cm

To the Metaverse and Beyond: The Future of Gaming and Social Media

The Metaverse already exists, and by reading this article you are already dipping your toes in the very edges of it. It’s very likely that the reason you’re hearing about a Metaverse right now is the recent explosion into the public eye of a very unique and relatively new technology: NFTs. NFT technology unlocks extremely powerful tools for creators to use when building virtual spaces in the Metaverse. The Sandbox is presenting itself as a social hub, a gaming platform, a monetization engine, and more.
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Chase

I am a crypto founder, nft holder, and technology dreamer. Go to https://y.at/🌲🌲☁️🌲🌲 for all my links.

What actually is the “Metaverse”, and why should we care?


What is the Metaverse?

The Metaverse already exists, and by reading this article you are already dipping your toes in the very edges of it. Depending on who you ask, you will likely get a hundred different answers about what exactly defines a “Metaverse”, but in general, there are common threads to these definitions:


Something may be considered a Metaverse if it is…


  • Internet-based
  • Comprised of several interconnected spaces
  • Used as a proxy for real-life social interaction


If that sounds a lot like social media, various chat rooms like Discord, or even websites with active communities (like this one) to you, you may define these things as a sort of Metaverse of their own. Many people consider the broader internet itself to be the first Metaverse.


But there is so much more.


Enter: NFTs

It’s very likely that the reason you’re hearing about a Metaverse right now is the recent explosion into the public eye of a very unique and relatively new technology: NFTs. If you aren’t already familiar with NFT technology, that’s a whole other topic. Suffice it to say, NFTs are a way of provably owning scarce digital assets.


For example, the profile picture that I am using at the time of writing this article is a NFT called a Bored Ape. You can check him out on Opensea.


Bored Ape Yacht Club #1074

Bored Ape Yacht Club #1074

This is, at its core, an image. If you want to have this image on your computer, you can just save it to your computer. But this image is special. There is a piece of technology behind this image identifying me as the unique owner of it, and nobody else on the planet (or any other planet for that matter, screw your Martians Elon) can rightfully claim that it is theirs. If you’re curious, feel free to reach out to me and I’ll happily show you all the technology!


Okay… so NFTs exist. Big deal.

Very big deal. Why?


Using this technology unlocks extremely powerful tools for creators to use when building virtual spaces in the Metaverse.


One of the most powerful examples of how NFTs can drive innovation in the Metaverse is The Sandbox.


Splash image of the Sandbox logo with scenery and voxel avatars in the background.

Splash image of the Sandbox logo with scenery and voxel avatars in the background.

The Sandbox is an upcoming interactive universe that’s a little like some of the other popular voxel based games cough. The big difference being every asset, every player model, every chunk of land in the entire game is an NFT.


The game not only has an economy; the game itself is an economy.


This means artists, builders, game-makers, and even game-players can monetize their playtime in a way that’s never been seen before. This new paradigm in gaming is known as “play-to-earn” and is already making waves. Another NFT based play-to-earn game, Axie Infinity, has provided a livable wage in the Philippines already.


The Sandbox is presenting itself as a social hub, a gaming platform, a monetization engine, and more. It has raised millions of dollars in capital to build out a single node of the Metaverse. And more nodes are coming.


That sounds great, but it’s niche.

You may think that nobody outside of the (relatively) small crypto / NFT community cares about the Metaverse. You would be wrong. There are several tech companies who have already made public their goals of building out a Metaverse, including Facebook, Epic Games, Microsoft, and more.


But those companies are already behind the curve.


The Sandbox already has a burgeoning community of artists and builders creating things for the platform. Better yet, anyone at all can create for the Sandbox and own their own experiences as NFTs. Every parcel of land is an NFT, and as an owner you can do whatever you like with it.


Combine that with the powerful tools for creating experiences, and the support of the extant NFT community, Facebook, Microsoft, and other tech companies may already be outclassed by the open-source nature of the space. As an example, check out a video of a functional experience I built in less than 3 hours using the tools that are already available from the Sandbox. Here’s a screenshot if you don’t want to watch:


My avatar standing in front of a Sandbox Build, a floating temple-like structure in game.

My avatar standing in front of a Sandbox Build, a floating temple-like structure in game.

Alright, maybe I’m interested, what else?

Leveraging the power of the blockchain, there are nearly limitless possibilities of what else can happen in the Metaverse. We’ve reached the ‘beyond’ portion of the article.


Since everything in this space is so new, and evolving so fast, teams of individuals are iterating on what is and is not possible right now. One particularly promising area of development is the formation of DAOs to govern the future of projects. A DAO, or Distributed Autonomous Organization, is a collective set of individuals who are given the authority to propose and vote on actions to be taken.


There are countless examples of DAOs, some of which are even real legal entities in the United States, much like an LLC. These organizations are a far cry from traditional companies, where a CEO or other executives make decisions that impact others. A DAO is more community-driven and grassroots oriented.


My favorite example of a DAO that intersects the Metaverse is The MonstroCities.


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The MonstroCities is an upcoming MMORPG game built in (you guessed it) The Sandbox, but is a completely separate team from the company building the Sandbox. The team building the MonstroCities has partnered with the Sandbox, and has purchased land on which to build their game, but other than that is an entirely separate entity. This is what we refer to as “composability”. The fact that projects in the Metaverse can all interact with one another through NFTs.


In the game, 4 species with 2,000 Monsters each battle it out for supremacy. These battles take place on Twitter, in Discord, and eventually in the game itself. Various prizes are awarded to winners of the battles, and eventually there will likely be monetary value associated with these prizes.


Here’s the kicker though… each monster is an NFT, and each monster NFT is worth one vote in the MonsterDAO. That means that you, as a game-player, can decide the future of the game. The MonsterDAO even has funds that the community will be able to spend in whatever way they decide.


That’s right. Go back and read that last sentence again. Imagine if Epic games set aside 10% of their revenue and let everyone who played Fortnite collectively decide to do whatever they wanted with it. That’s the power of a DAO.


Alright. I’m in. How do I do this?

Step 1: follow me on Twitter… just kidding this isn’t necessary, but might be a good idea if you like this kind of content.


Step 2: start exploring the Metaverse by researching NFTs / blockchain technology!


Twitter actually is a great way to get started, but always make sure you do plenty of research on what you are getting into. Another favorite of mine is content by Bankless. You don’t necessarily need to subscribe to their premium plan, the content they put out on YouTube and via their podcast is great for starting to learn.


Step 3: whatever you want!


Do you want to be an artist, creating content for the metaverse? Do you want to be a gamer, and potentially play-to-earn? Do you want to speculate on the value of assets in the Metaverse in an attempt to get rich quick? It’s all up to you. Just get out there and have fun.


I look forward to seeing you in the Metaverse soon.


The following is a brief disclaimer that I have to include so nobody finds a way to sue me for something. Smh.


Everything in this article is my opinion, and none of it should be taken as financial or legal advice. Seriously. DYOR is an acronym that stands for Do Your Own Research, and you’ll see it a lot in this space. Please don’t just take anyone’s word for something. Trust but verify, because even honest people make mistakes sometimes.


I have a financial stake in some of the projects and companies mentioned in this article. If you are curious about this, go check out my profile, transparent links to everything are there.


Phew. Hope that covers it. <3



This article is part of The Gaming Metaverse Writing Contest hosted by HackerNoon in partnership with The Sandbox.


Submit your #gaming-metaverse story today for your chance to win up to $2000 in SAND tokens.


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by Chase @cm.I am a crypto founder, nft holder, and technology dreamer. Go to https://y.at/🌲🌲☁️🌲🌲 for all my links.
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