NFTs: The Next Gaming Revolution?
|— Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are blockchain-based tokens that represent unique or rare digital and real-world assets.
— NFTs can enable gamers to truly own in-game items and transfer their assets from one game to the other.
— Gamers can sell their in-game NFTs in blockchain marketplaces. One of the most expensive gaming NFTs was sold for $170,000.
You’ve heard of NFT art – but did you know it’s causing huge disruption in the world of gaming?
It’s in the gamers’ blood. The moment they switch on their favorite games, they are immersed in a totally new world. Whether it be Fortnite, Minecraft, Call of Duty, or any other game, they take us the closest to living a virtual life. If you are a gamer, you probably know this too — your alias, your character, your skin, and your in-game items are an extension of your creative self.
But ask yourself, how much of everything you own in a game is actually yours? And are your assets unique from what others own, or are they at least rare items? Something you can show off and say with pride that you’re among the few people who globally own a particular asset? There’s no way to tell.
Thankfully, the advent of blockchain and cryptocurrency is changing the course of the gaming industry. In this article, we will particularly focus on one aspect — non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, and how they are significantly improving the gaming experience.
What is an NFT?
To understand the concept of non-fungible tokens, it is critical to learn the difference between fungible and non-fungible items.
Fungible items are anything that can substitute another item of the same category. For example, if you own a 100$ bill, you can exchange it with another 100$ bill without gaining or losing anything. Not that you want to overburden your wallet, but you may also exchange it for 10 bills of 10$ or 100 bills of 1$ each. There’s nothing unique in one bill that you can’t find in the other. In the crypto and blockchain sense of the world, fungible tokens are tokens like Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), and Litecoin (LTC). Similar to the dollar, one BTC, ETH, and other fungible cryptos can substitute an equivalent amount of the token without any gain or loss.
Contrarily, non-fungible items are items that cannot be wholly or partially exchanged with each other. An example of a non-fungible item could be a real estate property. If you own a house, it is unlikely you can exchange it with your friend’s house even if both houses have the same monetary value. There are many other factors such as the design of the house, the number of rooms, the location of the house, its color, balconies, and so on that you cannot substitute. The two houses are unique, and maybe yours is better.
In the world of cryptocurrencies, non-fungible tokens are crypto assets that represent a unique or rare digital or real-world item. NFTs are becoming more popular in gaming as the demand for unique in-game items increases. Let’s see how NFTs are shaping the future of gaming.
NFTs in gaming
Remember the days when tucked between the pages of your diary and inside your drawers were unique panini stickers, pokemon cards? There was no joy as great as being the first one in your friend circle to add a new card to your collection and show it off to your friends. Some of us even struck deals in the alley beside our house and sold our collections to our friends for an amount that gave us the Richie Rich feels.
NFTs in gaming are similar to those stickers but with some added benefits. Today’s games took a radical departure from many aspects of what owning cool stickers, cards, and similar assets used to be. Neither is there any way to define the uniqueness of an in-game asset nor do the gamers completely own them.
The use of NFTs in gaming can enable you to claim full control of the in-game items you purchase or win, just like the good old days. Additionally, each of the items can have a unique identity that will be pegged to your account as long as you own them. This will allow you to securely store your assets without fear of theft. You can also monetize your assets, value them depending on their scarcity, and trade them in blockchain marketplaces in exchange for crypto or fiat.
While we’re yet to see the use of NFTs in mainstream arcade and battle royale games, exclusive crypto collectible games have gained immense popularity in recent years. The craze is such that one of the most famous crypto collectible games, CryptoKitties, caused significant network congestion in the second-largest blockchain, Ethereum. The game allows users to buy unique digital cats and breed them on the blockchain. One of the most expensive CryptoKitties ever sold was worth approximately $170,000.
A more recent example of gaming NFTs is the Ethereum-based fantasy football game Sorare. Users in the game collect cards of football players and create a team to challenge other users. In a recent auction, the Sorare digital card of Kylian Mbappe, the forward of 2020 Champions League finalist Paris Saint-Germain FC, was sold for $65,000.
Apart from revolutionizing in-game ownership, NFTs can also help you create a single digital identity for all games. This means that they may enable you to move your skins, experience levels, and other in-game items across games, thus creating a more unified gaming experience.
Are NFTs the next gaming revolution?
Non-fungible tokens have a huge deal to offer to the world of gaming. The biggest impact they will have is by enabling users to truly own unique and rare in-game assets. Users who own extremely rare NFTs may also make a considerable income by selling their assets. Whether we call it a revolution or not, NFTs will change the way gamers interact within games.
Knowledge is power – so keep on learning! If you enjoy getting to grips with crypto and blockchain, check out our School of Block video How to Make an NFT.