When you think about games, the first thing that comes to mind is that they’re hobbies that we engage in during our free time. This can range from a simple mobile game like Candy Crush to a console game like Grand Theft Auto (GTA).
For a long time, video games have been split into two models: pay-to-play and free-to-play. Your typical console game where you pay to download the game before gaming is pay-to-play. Some examples are FIFA 21 and God of War on PlayStation or Xbox.
In contrast, free-to-play are games that allow you to play them for free, but you may need to pay for extra content. Some great examples are PUBG, Fortnite, and Temple Run. Fast forward to 2021, a new model based on blockchain technology has emerged, and it’s called play-to-earn.
Play-to-earn is a gaming model that allows you to play games and earn rewards you can convert to real money. With this unique concept, gaming becomes more than a hobby. It becomes a realistic source of income.
How does play-to-earn work?
Play-to-earn games use non-fungible tokens or NFTs to represent in-game assets. In-game assets are items and properties you own within a game that make the experience more interesting. This can be characters, objects, sound effects, maps, environments and more. For the uninitiated, NFTs are tokens that prove ownership of a digital asset or physical asset.
Play-to-earn games give players 100% ownership of their in-game NFT assets. Let’s assume that you’re playing a war game that uses the play-to-earn model. All weapons within the game are represented as NFTs.
During the course of gaming, if you unlock a special weapon, you receive an NFT that gives you complete ownership of the weapon. Similar to traditional gaming, you can decide to use the weapon to engage in combat and unlock new levels within the game.
However, unlike traditional gaming, you can also sell the weapon as an NFT on special marketplaces. Once the transaction is complete, you receive crypto-assets that can be exchanged for real money while the NFT is transferred to the buyer who gets ownership of the weapon within the game.
How to start playing play-to-earn games
Several play-to-earn games have different requirements for new players. However, you’ll be required to have a crypto wallet to store your crypto and connect it to the game.
You will also be required to make an initial investment to play, such as purchasing characters or in-game items. As of November 2021, the initial cost for playing Axie Infinity, the most popular play-to-earn game, is around $600.
Thankfully, a few platforms take care of these initial costs and support new players to achieve steady income from popular play-to-earn games. Metaverse Magna (MVM) is an example and is the largest crypto-gaming community in Africa, where you can earn up to $1000 a month playing crypto games.