Gaming and stepping to the new Web
Updated: Feb 27
Several industry leaders are already racing and trying to consolidate their place in the metaverse. Tech giants like Microsoft purchasing Activision Blizzard for $75B and Take-Two's plan on acquiring Zynga for $13B shows that gaming is the first step into the new era of the web.
What is the new Black?
The internet is a breathing living thing that evolves with its users. Currently a group of well funded and tech driven minds are working on the next project: rebuilding the web on the foundation of cryptocurrency and blockchain aka Web3. Let us take a walk back as to what the previous two versions did. Web1.0 (1990s) brought in online publishing and introduced e-commerce, while Web2.0 (2000s) enhanced the options of sharing content and platforms. Web3 aims to reform transactions and the economy around digital assets.
Evolution in progress
Blockchain and crypto has been existing for over a decade but recently showed how they are the new ways to monetized new kinds of organization and assets. The rise of NFTs and Facebook's Meta have accelerated the attention and cash flow to the creation of this all encompassing virtual world. The evolution of the Web is usually seen from the software perspective but it is the hardware that will also finally shape the experience of it (personal computer for Web1 and smartphones for Web2) Progress to the next stage will depend on the ever-improving GPUs, photorealistic 3D engines, AI driven content, cloud space and 5G as well as a better understood and sophisticated blockchain infrastructure. Many companies are competing for the next hardware wave with AR/VR glasses as the main key; Extended reality (XR) will be the new black.
Larger than just in-game experience
Did you know that there are approximately 2.5 billion gamers in the world who spend a good chunk of their time in a virtual world? The gaming culture has changed drastically over time, where innovations and updates are more consumer centric, creating subcultures of their own. In-game purchases, events and similar attractions make this industry a solid $150 billion market. Gamers have been introduced to digital currency and digital ownership way before it was a norm, and free-to-play garners more attention, this has spread the culture in all types of platforms. In one month, an average Roblox daily user is spending more than $5 a month on the platform. By creating verifiable digital scarcity for virtual goods using NFTs or integrating cryptocurrency as a payment method expands the scope of brands to build a track record in the digital economies in the metaverse. Many gaming companies have shown interest in adopting blockchain technology and NFTs in their system and even though it is not exactly welcomed by the gaming community, it will be seen that iconic IPs that have been existing for generations like Nintendo, will be adopted for the new Web. This gives brands a huge opening to adapt their powerful stories and characters for the new Web era to engage their fanbase. Just like how Adidas has joined the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT collection, starting the trend of collaborating and adding new content in Web3, NFTs can be the potential IP equivalent in the coming future.
It is pretty early to call out and pinpoint exactly how this new era is to unfold. While ideally metaverse is to have free interoperability and decentralized powers, allow people to collaborate and pool resources, it is hard not to say that industry leaders will try to dominate it. But it is proved that gaming could initiate the Meta and influence how Web3 will turn out to be.