How NFTs dey disrupt the Gaming industry inside developing nations
Jeff Zirlin, Head of Growth at Sky Mavis, ontop democratizing play-to-earn for inside the Gaming industry
We don kick off season two of Voices of the Data Economy with Jeff Zirlin, Head of Growth at Sky Mavis, the creator of Axie Infinity, a game wey dey use non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to reward players financially the more them play. During our conversation, Jeff dey describe the disruptive business model wey dey behind Axie Infinity, democratizing Gaming rights through NFTs, and how developing nations dey getting involved in play-to-earn. Here na edited excerpts from the podcast.
The Business Model of Axie Infinity
The business model of Axie Infinity dey different from a traditional game studio or Gaming company. Rather than relying on selling copies of a game or in-game resources, them don created an in-game economy, where players fit sell their NFTs and in-game resources to anyone, anywhere in the world.
“We just dey take 4.25% of all marketplace activity as a fee. For example, if today, around $3 million of NFT volume on our marketplace dey; 4.25% of am go dey taken as a fee to run the game. Right now, that payment dey go to Sky Mavis, the developers of Axie Infinity. For future, we go even dey share that fee with all the owners of our governance token,” says Jeff.
How NFTs dey change the Gaming industry?
“I think sey the fundamental innovation wey NFTs bring to the Gaming market na to allow for user-owned, user-operated games and economies. E dey create much more interesting aligned incentives where the players and the developers dey both incentivized to grow the ecosystem around the game.”
Players wey dey new to Axie Infinity need 3 Axies to fit start, costing approximately $150. The majority of players na from developing nations and developing economies where them no fit afford to start dey play on their own. That na where organizations like Yield Guild go come in, wey get massive amounts of Axies, the game’s native NFTs. Yield guilds dey offer scholarships to cover these costs; new players wey dey participate in the scheme dey aptly called scholars.
But why be sey play-to-earn NFT Gaming dey interesting for developing nations? A large percentage of Axie Infinity’s player base don dey come from the developing world — Indonesia, the Philippines, Brazil, and Venezuela.
“Around 80% of our player base na from developing nations. That one dey important because these na the types of people wey need dey use blockchain. E no be just for people wey dey Silicon Valley or Berlin. We need people wey dey come for the benefits. One of the problems wey the industry get be sey people think about how we fit make am easier to use the technology, but them no think enough about why people go use the technology in the first place.”
Scaling NFT Gaming by to reduce barriers to entry
Recently, Sky Mavis raise $7.5M to scale Axie Infinity. Jeff mention sey a part of am dey go into reducing barriers to entry for playing. People go fit dey able to play for free to get started; them go dey get three starter Axies wey no be blockchain assets. But them go learn how to play the game; them fit get a taste for earning. Them fit dey able to make 5% of the in-game resources wey one blockchain user fit use.
“I think sey the market for NFTs go be a trillion-dollar industry in 10 years. At present, the in-game market na only $50 billion which na small size. Why? Because people no wan spend money on stuff wey them no earn, or wey them no own. It fit dey banned or confiscated by the game developers. Once them own their game assets, them go dey spend trillions of dollars,” Jeff talk so.
Jeff conclude sey Gamers deserve to own their game assets, their game profile, their game identity — this na all property and information them suppose own. We just never even think sey people suppose own this stuff. “For mass scale, as a society, we still dey grasp why people go wan own their data online but more people dey start to demand these types of rights. E go only increase over time.”
Here na list of the selected time stamps on the different topics wey dey discussed during the podcast:
01:46–04:00: Business Model of Axie Infinity
04:00–05:20: How NFTs dey change the Gaming industry
05:20–06:25: Jeff’s relationship with Gaming
06:25–11:42: How to fit start with play-to-earn in a developing nation
11:42–15:00: Managing a global community of gamers
15:00–18:20: The growth projections for NFT Gaming
18:20–23:18: Deploying $7.5 million to scale Axie Infinity
23:18–25:35: The EU and US vs developing nations as a user base for NFT Gaming
25:35–27:45: How to choose a credible NFT project
27:45–End: The Future of NFT Gaming