The Future of Gaming — Jiho of Axie Infinity
(Part of the ZENZO Beacon Series: Interviewing Gamers, Developers, & Blockchain Enthusiasts — in part with CoinDreams.io)
- What are the biggest reasons that you feel the gaming industry is the most ripe industry for the adoption of blockchain technology?
“Gamers are already very used to digital currencies. It comes naturally to them. They are also young, adventurous, and it’s easy for them to learn new skills and concepts. We’ve always seen gaming push forward new tech like the internet; naturally we think it’s really fertile ground to introduce people to blockchain. The current gaming industry is flawed in structure, similar to the rotten banking structure. The first step with web3 was giving people control of their money and data. Bitcoin and ETH allow people to be their own bank. With blockchain games we are also tapping into the same vein of data sovereignty and allowing people to truly own their game assets for the first time. If a game is just about being fun, it can limit the scope of what a game can be. Earning, learning, and socializing with like minded individuals will make blockchain gaming a fertile laboratory; we’re excited to be in on the ground floor.”
2. What are some of the largest problems in the gaming industry, in your experience?
Problems of Free to Play Models
“Until now, game devs lacked the tools and technology to give gamers real stakes in their ecosystems. This has resulted in developers typically viewing their users as customers, rather than partners or stakeholders. If players are paying solely for entertainment value, rather than something they actually own and can monetize, they are less incentivized to be loyal to the game, less incentivized to spend money in the ecosystem, and less motivated to evangelize the game. For example, the average World of Warcraft player, despite spending hundreds of hours in-game, cannot easily monetize their time in-game. Selling game assets for real-world currency goes against Blizzard’s terms of service.
Right now, a lot of the gaming industry is moving towards free to play monetization model, but that actually makes it so that to have a viable game you need a huge userbase, since so few users spend anything. If you’re only monetizing from a small percentage of your userbase, there are predatory behaviors that emerge (for example: using paid advertising to target people with mental disabilities or addictive personalities).”
Problems of Indie Game Crowdfunding Models
“ Before blockchain came along, developers lacked the tools to be able to tokenize stakes within their ecosystem. Axie is a living testament — rather than give merchandise and other basic stuff, we gave axies and land. We think this created a more healthy relationship between our team and the community. Our incentives are aligned to grow the ecosystem altogether. So, we see our community as part of our team. A lot of people in the community make art, create content, stream, and create tools for othr Axie players. Also, that type of funding model bootstrapped early testers — we had a community from day 1 to help with testing and marketing.”
3. Why does blockchain offer benefits for gamers worldwide?
“ In short, blockchain allow gamers to own pieces of the game that they’re playing. It aligns their incentives with the developers and creates a closer relationship with developers, gamers, partners, and stakeholders. There is no more dev to customer model. It’s more of a co-op model where players truly join the project and work hard because they understand that they are part of something larger than themselves. This makes a new and interesting genre possible.”
4. How do you personally describe Axie Infinity? (What is it to you?)
“ I see Axie as a cute, competitive, digital pet game that can bring the benefits of blockchain to everyday people. Some people like to think of it as an internet monster protocol. We are creating this universe, art assets, and building the game with the community. We see the community contributions and expect it to grow. It is a very community-based game — one where it’s more than about just having fun… it’s making connections, earning crypto, and improving yourself. A lot of people in Axie are into self improvement and health. In modern life, we interact with people who are in the same proximity with us, instead of sharing the same beliefs. Axie is where like-minded people can gather and help each other grow, adopt, and help elevate the same tech they’re drawn to as well.”
5. What’s your background and how does it relate to AI & blockchain gaming?
“There are a few elements that make me predisposed to falling in love with the Axie mission:
1. I’ve been lifelong gamer. I made decent amounts of money with World of Warcraft and Diablo, but it was stressful and you always lose a portion of your earnings to scams. I was in top WoW guild — a guild that was banned for exploiting a hack. My account was banned, even though I didn’t play that summer when they were exploiting. As a player in the Blizzard ecosystem, you have no rights. They can delete your account without question at any given moment and no recourse.
2. I always wanted to monetize in-game time and energy… I studied Military History and Monetary Theory at Yale University. So, my academic background touched a lot on macroeconomices and it comes in handy with Axie, where we need to design a sustainable and healthy economy that works for everyone. A lot of us also played CryptoKitties back in the day and learned from that experience. We are proud of the fact that the cheapest axie on the marketplace has never fallen below the cost to breed an axie. I think that’s an example how we take economics very seriously. We are working on the native token for the Axie universe ,which is called LUNA and we are super excited to share that with the community.
3. I grew up collecting insects, fossils, etc. Looking back, I realize how suitable and perfect Axie is for me. My father is a rather well-known butterfly collector. At an early age, I familiarized myself with the concept of scarcity and aesthetics. There is a heavy collecting element in Axie, which is one more reason why I was attracted to the project.”
6. What is Axie Infinity doing to solve those issues you mentioned in question 2?
“ Basically, we solve both. We believe in giving our users real stake within the ecosystem. That encourages them and changes their behavior to be more positive. In axie, there is 0 toxicity. You could say that’s because we have people who love cute new pets, but from game theory level it makes no sense for players to be toxic because it could cause them to lose money or hurt their investment (both time and money).”
7. What are some of the biggest benefits for Axie Infinity players that blockchain helps to provide?
“Firstly, one of the biggest benefits is giving Axie players real stake within the game and allowing them to earn tokens from other projects in a decentralized manner. Alongside that, they have the ability to engage in trustless trade on the Axie marketplace, which is actually a DEX. Since axies are decentralized and there are apis, players can create their own tools and sites that help improve the Axie gameplay experience and this also does a lot of the heavy lifting for the team and developers… saving them time and energy to focus on other aspects of the game.”
8. What are you most excited about for Axie’s future?
““I think I’m mostly excited about the new application. It’ll feature real-time player vs. player battles as well as Chimera battles. We’ve put a lot of hard work into making it super smooth. It’s something that anyone could pickup quickly and have fun with.”
Final Words by YuurinBee
As a beta player, Axie Infinity has been an exciting experience for me into the world of blockchain games, learning what the current challenges are and the benefits that blockchain brings to players… but most importantly, having fun along the way and making some great, new friends. I am anticipating Axie to be able to reach mainstream gamers and help disrupt the current industry — predominantly coveted by large gaming conglomerates that have yet to build the bridge between players and game developers on this caliber.
Axie Infinity Giveaway
As a special gift, we are doing one of the best Axie Infinity giveaways ever and will be giving away 1 Origin Axie (#2975), 1 Forest Plot, and 1 Arctic Plot to 3 separate winners! The giveaway event will go on for 2 weeks and you can enter it at the link below. Good Luck!
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You can follow their official pages and stay up to date with this project and all of their updates…
Axie Infinity: https://axieinfinity.com