What if you could make a living from playing your favourite game? That’s what play-to-earn, a new generation of video games, promises. In this model, every player can monetize fun by generating tokens and NFTs and selling them via online marketplaces later on. It can be a nice bonus to your salary or an original alternative to standard income (check out what Axie Infinity did in the Philippines).
The adoption of blockchain games is accelerating day by day, but the sphere could develop faster if there were more blockchain game development specialists on the market. Most game devs stick to traditional gaming, and there’s a good reason for it: web3 development has quite an entry barrier. What is it and how to remove it once and for all to make play-to-earn games flourish? Let’s find out!
Blockchain game development step by step
Game developers might have cool ideas on how to implement web3 development in their projects. What prevents them from creating marvelous blockchain games is, first and foremost, the technical entry barrier.
Blockchain game development is complicated. Producing a traditional game that will be fun and engaging is difficult itself. The web3 development component makes it even more challenging as it adds new layers to these games.
Let’s look at a Maslow-like pyramid showing how to make a blockchain game playable and fun.
Similarly to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, in the blockchain game development process, one needs to take care of the fundamentals before they proceed to the next layer.
At the bottom, there’s the game engine, the basic tool of a game developer. Could be Unity, Unreal Engine, Godot, or any other according to one’s preferences. It’s the foundation of every video game that has a significant impact on the other elements of the pyramid.
The next area to take care of is networking and security. As blockchain games involve users’ money, they need to be 100% secure, without compromises. There are many ways of exploiting security weaknesses in blockchain (Andressen Horowitz summarized some of them here), and developers need to prepare their games for all of them.
Unfortunately, they usually don’t have such competences. Security is the weakest point of today’s blockchain games, and this problem affects the reputation of the entire sphere. Players coming from traditional gaming won’t trust web3 titles until we get rid of hacks and other types of fraud. That’s why it’s so important that the web3 development gap in gaming gets covered.
Once developers take care of security, they can go to tokenomics, the eternal economy of their game and the apple of the eye of the team members with a blockchain background. It doesn’t make the game more fun (actually, may be the opposite), but incentivizes people to play, especially those from the web3 community.
Here’s the mistake of most web3 development projects: starting from tokenomics. It’s especially common for teams coming from the blockchain, not gamedev, community. Knowing the market trends, they start from writing whitepaper and building attractive roadmaps. Why is it a problem? Because they don’t think about security requirements at this point, and, in effect, making their vision come true may prove impossible.
Finally, once the game engine, networking, security and tokenomics are in place, developers creating blockchain games may focus on gameplay. It’s the heart of each production, and the core of the brilliant ideas born inside game studios. Gameplay is what makes games fun, engaging and replayable, and that’s what developers should focus on.
Unfortunately, developers dealing with web3 development are too busy with the previous, purely technical steps to devote their time to this core layer. Instead of designing engaging, skill-based gameplay known from the top console or mobile games, they learn web3 development nuances and get stuck with smart contracts.
Fortunately, there’s a way to free up their working hours.
Game development vs web3 development
Blockchain game development imposes new requirements that call for specific competences. Most game developers simply don’t have them because they were trained to make games, not write smart contracts. Web3 development for gaming is a tiny niche, and so developers specializing in it are very expensive (if someone manages to find them on the market).
Because of that, many marvelous blockchain game development ideas get wasted. If developers had a solution that would take the technical difficulties of the blockchain technology off their shoulders, they wouldn’t have to learn web3 development and could focus on what they’re best at: designing engaging gameplay.
With this assumption in mind, our team created a tool that plays exactly this role.
A single tool with multiple purposes
Elympics is a networking engine for multiplayer blockchain games that frees developers from the so-called heavy lifting. It allows them to build secure browser-based games and publish them in no time (even 48 hours!). Its server-authoritative approach and ML-based matchmaking provide fair, skill-based duels without the pay-to-win mechanics. The result? More engaging blockchain games!
Thanks to our tool, game developers don’t have to know how to make a blockchain game. Elympics covers the engine, network and security layers from our pyramid. It also facilitates tokenomics design thanks to its Essential Smart Contracts library.
This way, developers have more time for gameplay design, and players enjoy better games!