Blockchain has come a long way since being introduced in 2008 to empower the exchange of cryptocurrency. As more industries explore the technology’s ability to trace and verify the movement of data, blockchain has come to be seen as a tool with the promise of transforming everything from tracking vaccinations to directing military operations to managing supply chains.
In the world of gaming, the blockchain revolution has already arrived. As early as 2017, blockchain was being used by gaming developers to allow for in-game cryptocurrency purchases of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). While some early games seemed to push blockchain platforms to their limits, the growing pains did little to dampen developers enthusiasm.
As we enter 2022, blockchain is transforming the industry, with more companies than ever incorporating the technology into their game development strategies. The result is a new wave of “play-to-earn” games that are attracting hundreds of thousands of users.
My Crypto Heroes is considered one of the world’s largest blockchain games and serves as a model for successful play-to-earn games. Developed by double jump.tokyo in 2018, My Crypto Heroes is a role playing game built on the Ethereum blockchain. In 2020 its popularity pushed it to the top of the ETH transaction volume chart.
The game play in My Crypto Heroes involves collecting and training heroes from history, like Joan of Arc or King Arthur, and sending them on quests to find rare items. The quests, along with the battles that heroes face along the way, result in earning digital assets that are tradable within the My Crypto Heroes universe as NFTs.
With play-to-earn games, players cash in when they sell the digital assets that they have collected during game play. The Albert Einstein hero, which is the most popular in the My Crypto Heroes game, was selling for 7.2 ETH on December 14, 2021, which at that time translated to more than $27,000.
Bringing blockchain to the world of gaming
On its own, game development is a complicated endeavor. When blockchain is added to the mix, the challenge of development greatly increases, requiring expertise beyond that normally employed by game creators.
My Crypto Heroes takes the blockchain game model to the next level by providing its own token for use within the game environments. My Crypto Heroes Coin is an ERC-20 governance token that was first issued in November 2020. The token can be used for in-game activities, such as voting on in-game elections, as well as to pay for My Crypto Heroes NFTs on certain crypto marketplaces.
“Specializing in developing blockchain games that involve NFT solutions requires more than just gaming expertise,” explains Hironobu Ueno, CEO of double jump.tokyo. “Our success in game development flows from bringing to the table an international team with expertise in engineering, marketing, gaming, finance, blockchain technologies, and cryptocurrency.”
In addition to continuing the development of My Crypto Heroes, Ueno and double jump.tokyo now partner with game developers to provide technology solutions. Gaming companies including Square Enix, Bandai Namco, and Sega are among those that double jump.tokyo has partnered with in game development.
Fueling mainstream adoption of blockchain tools
While blockchain has found dedicated fans within the world of gaming, the technology still presents hurdles to widespread adoption. Just as in the world of cryptocurrency, there is resistance fueled by technical complications and confusion about how to access and utilize the technology. In addition, concerns over scams involving blockchain games have already led to bans on some gaming platforms.
Ueno and double jump.tokyo would love to be part of a movement that takes blockchain games mainstream.
“Our goal is to facilitate the mainstream adoption of NFTs and blockchain technologies across the global gaming and entertainment industries,” Ueno says. “Our experience allows us to provide the necessary technology and tools that creators need to build the metaverse.”