Although the process has been slow, web3 gaming has certainly been gaining adoption. Game developers in the blockchain space have remained focused and continued building despite the web3 and crypto market taking multiple bad hits leading to 2023.
It was revealed in a recent study that 75% of game developers expect that they will work in the web3 gaming sector in the near future. The study was conducted by web3 mobile gaming company Coda Labs.
All this goes to show that there is a lot of anticipation surrounding web3 gaming and rightfully so because the technology holds true potential to improve gaming causing it to break new records by userbase and market cap.
Web3 Gaming Statistics
The web3 gaming market cap is estimated to be $27.5 billion. This is almost 10 times more than it’s value of $3.2 billion in 2021. Currently, gaming accounts for 60% of activity on blockchain. 40% of that total activity occurs on the Wax blockchain.
In the first half of 2022, almost 800,000 people interacted with web3 games on a daily basis. The number of gamers in blockchain is a mere fraction of the $3.03 billion gamers in the traditional gaming world.
The prices of web3 gaming tokens tripled in January 2023.
Delphi Digital: Gaming token price increases in January 2023
According to data from CoinGecko, Apecoi (APE), Axie Infinity (AXS) and Sandbox (SAND), were the leading tokens in price increases.
Challenges that web3 games face
There are several challenges that impact the growth of gaming in web3. These include scalability, user education and user acquisition.
Game development requires multiple layers of different technologies to be accomplished. With the integration of web3 technology, the number of layers is only multiplied. To achieve scalability, these layers of web3 technology have to be matured. This is something that requires a lot of time, research and money put into it. Unfortunately, until web3 games reach scalability, they won’t be able to accommodate heavy mainstream usage.
Web3 gaming uses a lot of new and complex technology. While most of this technology is on the backend and so, unseen, there is a layer that runs on the front end that players will come into contact with. Players need to learn about self-custodial and non-custodial wallets, seed phrases, private key security and gaming tokens.
The user journey in web3 differs greatly from web2 and requires users to explore new reasons as to why they are getting involved with something. In web2, the user journey is quite simple as it generally involves less upfront investment. When interacting with web3 games, users explore new motivations that will make the investment worthwhile.
A high barrier to entry is another factor impacting the growth of games in web3. As it stands, most games require users to connect to their site with a crypto wallet before they can start interacting with the platform. To play a game most platforms also require you to hold tokens. Most people prefer to test out a game before committing to it. Because of token requirements, most people are economically excluded from playing web3 games, even if they are interested.
Top web3 gaming companies
Immutable Games Studio
Immutable is a developer platform for web3 games. Their mission is to scale web3 gaming by improving asset ownership and commerce in digital worlds through NFTs. The popular Gods Unchained is one of the games produced by their studio.
Established in 2017, Horizon Blockchain Games provides a player-driven ecosystem for decentralized games that are free to play where players can win, own, trade, and sell their NFT cards. It is best known for its game Skyweaver; a competitive card trading game. The company also developed Sequence, which allows developers to integrate their products with blockchain.
Gala Games creates web3 games with an invisible blockchain layer that makes the gaming experience seamless and accessible to all players. It is community driven and makes decisions based on their community members input and suggestions.
What To Expect From Web3 Gaming In The Future
In 2023, we can expect to see web3 gaming undergo many unexpected changes. Despite the crypto bear market, the sector has continued to receive large investments from top companies such as Microsoft.
Web3 game development companies are going to need to uncover ways to make the technical layer of web3 less visible so that users can experience their games more seamlessly.
Another way to open up the web3 gaming industry is to lower the barrier to entry. With more accessible entry requirements, the number of people who can interact with web3 games will increase. In the future, we can expect to see development companies testing new models that improve web3 accessibility.