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On December 6, just two days after the start of an NFT-backed “card pack” sale for their blockchain-based video game Alien Worlds, the 15-person team behind development studio Daococo did not sell packs after successfully raising $ 250,000.

While a quarter of a million might seem like a pittance in a world where a single NFT bug can get six numbers and more established games such as The Sandbox and Decentraland routinely fetch millionsFor a smaller studio, this is the kind of pay raise that can ensure the success of a project – and, according to Play To Earn editor-in-chief Robert Hoogendoorn, the unique set of buyer incentives means it may well become part of a bigger trend.

“Finding smaller games, investing early, and hoping they thrive is very similar to investing in cryptocurrency,” said Hoogendoorn. “You hope to find that game that grows into the next Minecraft and makes that investment go 100x.”

Where traditional video game crowdfunding efforts allow early believers to pledge their money in exchange for rewards such as in-game characters named after them or invitations to launch parties, NFT-supported games can turn the same concept into a real investment. .

“For centuries, property has been a privilege of the upper classes,” said Michael Yeates, co-founder of Alien Worlds. “Now in crypto, everyone has the chance to earn passive income by owning land that really belongs to them.”

In-game items and assets backed as NFTs can provide significant trade-in value as a game becomes more popular, and complex game economies can even turn them into revenue-bearing assets, according to the Alien Worlds team.

“The [Alien Worlds] NFTs, unlike pure NFT cards, are collectible because they have factual characteristics recognized by smart gaming contracts, ”explains Saro Mckenna, co-founder of Alien Worlds. “One NFT may give you more Trilium (Alien Worlds’ in-game currency) if you use it, another one may be more useful. […] This is quite advanced by blockchain standards, where functionality is often still somewhat standard even when immutability and decentralization are present. “

Alien Worlds, which bills itself as ‘DAOs and DeFi in Space’, is one of the few titles at the forefront of in-game NFT monetization for players, but Hoogendoorn thinks there is more to come.

“For developers, it may sound strange to give players ownership of assets. But what if developers receive 5% on every in-game / on-chain transaction? They will create a new income stream. In addition, they create a community that has a share in their gaming world. The involvement will be much higher because of the economic incentive. “

But developers who want to take advantage of the new trend may want to do research first, Hoogendoorn warned.

Understand scarcity, and build the game’s economy around it, and [make sure] you have a gaming economy that is interesting for players to put in a lot of time and effort. “