Ask the Orb: What is a crypto metaverse?
A cryptocurrency metaverse is a virtual environment that combines blockchain technology with cryptocurrency.
What Is the Metaverse?
For decades, the vast potential of virtual worlds could only be imagined in science fiction literature. Today, the term “metaverse” is one of the most popular in technology, and it is being warmly adopted by software and game developers in sectors ranging from cryptocurrency and gaming — to social networking. The metaverse has evolved into a very real phenomena, with a slew of thriving sites boasting more deep crypto connections.
A metaverse is a shared, immersive virtual environment in which people, often represented by avatars, may interact with one another, build experiences, and create in-world items and landscapes. Users can purchase, sell, and trade digital real estate, products, avatar accessories, and other objects in metaverses, which often have their own intrinsic economies and currencies. The metaverse can be accessed by a computer, virtual reality (VR) headset, or smartphone.
A crypto metaverse, in particular, is a metaverse that uses blockchain as its underlying technology and crypto assets, such as metaverse tokens, in its economy. Decentraland, Cryptovoxels, Alien Worlds, Axie Infinity, and The Sandbox are examples of crypto metaverses and protocols that integrate metaverse aspects.
While metaverse-like environments have existed for some time in massively multiplayer online games, the incorporation of blockchain, crypto, and VR into the sector is not only drastically changing who can participate and what they can do, but also demonstrating the real-world market value of assets, interactions, and experiences earned in the digital realms of blockchain games.
Different forms of metaverse tokens are often used to represent metaverse crypto assets and commodities, such as digital land and goods. Their ownership is recorded on the blockchain, and they may even be traded for digital assets such as bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) on a variety of decentralized exchanges (DEXs).
The actual world is increasingly migrating to the metaverse. A number of firms, both mainstream and crypto native, have established virtual offices in crypto metaverses and host virtual events and festivals attended by thousands of people on a regular basis. For example, the renowned auction firm Sotheby’s will establish a digital duplicate of its London offices in the blockchain game Decentraland in 2021. The area has a multi-room virtual art exhibition that metaverse visitors can explore.
Similarly, Decentraland conducts live music events, seminars, and gatherings on a regular basis.
Key Features of Crypto Metaverses
Crypto metaverse designers have often endeavored to separate their worlds from previous generations of metaverses in three crucial ways:
Decentralization: Unlike early virtual worlds, which were owned and managed by corporations, crypto metaverses are often decentralized, with some or all metaverse games based on blockchain technology. As a result, blockchain metaverses deviate from the standard corporate structures and value extraction strategies of today’s gaming sector. Because of the unique structure of blockchain games, participants may have more fair involvement options. It also implies that ownership of the metaverse is distributed among its players. Even if the original architects of the metaverse blockchain leave, the game itself may continue to exist indefinitely.
User governance: Decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and governance tokens are used by crypto metaverses like Decentraland to help put their users in charge of the game’s destiny, allowing them to influence changes and updates through voting. As a result, metaverses may become more than simply crypto games; they can develop into full nations with economies and democratic government.
Provable provenance: Crypto tokens, such as non-fungible tokens, are used as in-world things in crypto metaverses (NFTs). Achievements and acquisitions in gaming environments may have a high monetary worth for players. NFTs provide much-needed transparency and access to asset markets to the standards of in-game goods. Because each NFT is distinct, metaverse tokens and objects may be simply written to assist in proving the provenance of in-game user-generated material as well as NFT gaming assets.
Real-world economic value: Because crypto metaverses employ cryptocurrency tokens and blockchain infrastructure, their economies are inextricably linked to the larger crypto economy. Holders of metaverse currencies, avatar skins, and digital real estate may now exchange them on DEXs and NFT marketplaces, commanding real-world value for their in-world assets.
Metaverse Games Provide a Social and Financial Opportunity
While crypto metaverses (and NFT games in general) are still in their infancy, these new worlds offer exciting social and financial potential for the future. Crypto metaverses can provide people with new opportunities to play, invest, collect, and communicate — as well as earn money from it all.
Furthermore, although progress on the different unique metaverse platforms is notable, it is the ability for the numerous metaverse games to connect and interoperate with one another that has the potential to propel the nascent blockchain gaming ecosystem into a pillar of the global economy. Metaverse games are positioned to become a major part in the next phase of the internet by merging the immersive surroundings of VR, the addictive playability of video games, the interaction of social media, and the value propositions of cryptocurrency.