What Is Play-to-earn And Why Should Marketers Care About It?


Games are already the most profitable form of entertainment on the globe. The introduction of web3 provides new opportunities for game creators and players to make money. So, what exactly is ‘play to win’ (P2W), and why should experienced gaming marketers be concerned? This is all you need to know.

Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies are spawning a new kind of games that, in principle, enable gamers to win’money’ while playing. They enable users to produce or buy in-game assets that are connected to non-fungible tokens (NFTs). The owners of such assets boost their worth by participating in the game.

Resources, land, and in-game commodities are all tokenized, which means they can be traded to anyone, anywhere on open peer-to-peer exchanges. 

That is the premise of the previously described P2E gaming economy, which converts in-game objects into assets that players may own, raise in value, and eventually sell to generate real-world money.

Sky Mavis, the makers of Axie Infinity, explains it in grandiose terms: “Axie offers an entirely player-owned real money economy.” Instead of selling things or copies of the game, game producers concentrate on expanding the economy from player to player. Market fees are deposited into a Community Treasury, the usage of which is determined by AXS holders. Developers profit from their holding of AXS tokens. Axes are made by gamers and sold to new/other players using in-game resources. Consider Axie to be a country with a functioning economy. The government obtains tax money from AXS token holders.” Blockchain technology spawning a new play to earn game platform development

Brands and celebrities are flocking to the venue, enticed by the chance to receive a percentage of any transaction. Gino D’Acampo, a celebrity chef, has invested in Big Town Chef, a metaverse game that “enables participants to cultivate, trade virtual supplies, and engage in culinary tournaments.” Chef avatars created by gamers, including D’Acampo, are eventually exchanged as investments.

Gino D’Acampo’s official avatar

Nike, which has previously found success in establishing your own metaverse places, has the chance to successfully utilize players to boost the worth of your branded NFTs and gain a cut of the sale.

Genuine worth

The interaction of real and virtual currency in games has existed for many years. One of the world’s greatest multiplayer online games, World of Warcraft, battled to regulate its population of “gold farms,” in which in-game cash was illegally acquired and sold for real-world currency. Other multiplayer games with intricate in-game economies, such as EVE Online, have had assets valued roughly $378,000 in real-world cash go missing in unusual in-game instances.

For years, players have been used to considering in-game currency to be genuine. However, with the introduction of NFTs, which can be swapped for cryptocurrencies on the blockchain, this has become quite literal.

However, things have changed since then. Axie Infinity was the victim of the “largest crypto theft in history,” with over $600 million stolen. The market’s lack of stability was further emphasized when the official Formula 1 NFT game, F1 Delta Time, was shut down owing to licensing concerns, rendering player-created tokens in that arena effectively useless.

The problem for proponents of NFTs in gaming is determining how to reach out to an audience that is generally unhappy with the incorporation of NFTs to date. NFT’s apparent encroachment into long-running brands has elicited much more unfavorable responses from gaming fans than successful implementations.

After a fan protest, Team17 was forced to abandon its NFT ambitions. Ubisoft, the publisher of titles such as Far Cry and Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon, had a similar response from both their audience and their creators when they attempted to include NFTs into their games.

It also emphasizes the need of adding value to the gaming ecosystem in which NFTs are introduced. That is not a speculative viewpoint. – P2E, according to Reddit co-founder Alex Ohanian, will be the dominating form of play in a few years: “In five years, you will really treasure your time.” And instead of being harvested for commercials or tricked out of money to purchase silly hammers you don’t truly own, you’ll play an equal on-chain game that is just as exciting but genuinely gains value, and you’ll be the reaper.”

It remains to be seen if NFTs will permeate the gaming market broadly enough for this to become a reality. Many NFTs’ prices fell early this year, and there is still a major public perception challenge to address. There are still safety problems, as the cautionary stories of Axie Infinity and F1 Delta Time indicate.

What is evident is that enormous money is already pouring into the NFT gaming market – but companies must tread carefully to avoid offering value to gamers.


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