Axie Infinity became the world’s most expensive NFT collection last month. A phenomenal success motivated by one simple factor: gamers can make money while playing.
The primary challenge resembles Pikachu’s endless battle with a wild Pidgey. We’re fighting swarms of Axies instead of Pokémon. Instead of being restricted to Gameboy, the game may be played on desktop or mobile. Axie Infinity is the hottest new blockchain card game. They buy land and gear, feed, raise, and drill Axies that they can send into combat or sell for real cryptocurrency.
Making money with merriment
Play-to-earn is used in Axie Infinity to give people a new way to use Ethereum blockchain technology for fun. As tokens that can’t be changed, monsters and gear can be easily tracked. The prizes of Axie battles go to the winners, in this instance, Bitcoin currencies (SLP).
Users may even breed, feed, and drill their own Axies, thereby developing an army—or an inventory. To do so, players must pay in SLP and Axie Infinity Shards (AXS), the game’s second cryptocurrency. SLPs are like experience points and are needed to play the game. AXS is a type of governance token. Those who hold them may actively contribute to the game’s future design.
We have a million-dollar Axie
The game’s purpose is to gather the most Axies. The price of Ether is used to figure out how much it is worth. Ether can then be exchanged for money in the United States, Europe, or the Philippines to make things even more accessible. And there is the precedent that it may be a profitable undertaking. An AXS coin costs EUR 75 against 9 cents for SLP. Players get SLPs after every battle won. There are also rewards for participating in a particular number of bouts. Players may also profit by selling their Axies. Each Axie has six body parts and may be used to breed up to seven times. The Axie increases in value with rarity.
The top Axie sold for EUR 950,000. People in Vietnam and the Philippines started playing the game to earn money because COVID deprived them of any means to generate money. Now gaming is not only delivering a consistent income but also converting pandemic victims into NFT traders and maybe increasing NFT adoption. There is a road to substantial income with gamers in SE Asia making up to USD 1000 per month (considering the average monthly salary in the Philippines is EUR 117) and Youtubers in the West estimating an average player may make USD 6 per hour.
The thousand-dollar trap
But before they can start making money from the game, gamers must first pay up. To start, each player requires three monsters. The cheapest is presently under USD 200; a triple used to be over USD 1000. Some Filipino or Vietnamese gamers bought AXS tokens from other players on Facebook groups, paying up to 30% interest.
Thousands of gamers in the Philippines have made Axie their full-time job. And the trend isn’t slowing—30,000 DAUs (daily active users) in April. By August, it had risen to a million. The value of each AXS coin has surged 250-fold in the last quarter, and the total value of all NFTs exchanged on the market has surpassed USD 1B. During the same time span, the market worth soared to USD 22B, making Axie Infinity the world’s most expensive NFT collection.
Not everyone is sure about how long the game will last. Coinmonks, a non-profit group, sees a ponzi scam. Players invest their own money in the expectation of profiting. For Coinmonks, this works since the number of new participants monthly exceeds the number of existing players, keeping the SLP value stable. If the number of new users falls below the number of current players, the value of SLPs will fall. Experts warn about hyper-inflation.
Also, some gamers may earn a living playing the game, but not all. According to Coinmonk’s calculations, just 1 in 700 gamers can afford a full-time income.
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