Virtual currency games

The dream of every little boy (and many adult men) to make a living playing video games is approaching reality. The recent release of HunterCoin and the development of VoidSpace, games that reward players in digital currency rather than in virtual princesses or gold stars, point to a future when the scoreboard can be rewarded in dollars as well as in pounds sterling, euros and yen.

The story of the millionth (virtual) real estate agent …

Digital currencies are slowly gaining maturity both in terms of their functionality and financial infrastructure, which allows them to be used as a reliable alternative to a non-virtual fiat currency. Although bitcoin, the first and most famous of the cryptocurrencies, was created in 2009, in virtual games there have been forms of virtual currencies for over 15 years. Ultima Online 1997 was the first notable attempt to incorporate a large-scale virtual economy into the game. Players could collect gold coins by conducting quests, fighting monsters and finding treasure, and spend them on armor, weapons or real estate. It was an early embodiment of virtual currency, as it existed exclusively in gaming, although it reflected the real world economy to the extent that Ultima’s currency experienced inflation as a result of gaming mechanics that ensured a constant supply of monsters to kill and thus collect gold coins.

Released in 1999, EverQuest made gaming games with virtual currency a step further by allowing players to trade virtual goods with each other in the game, and although the game designer also banned the sale of virtual items to each other on eBay. In a real-world phenomenon that was entertainingly explored in Neil Stevenson’s 2011 novel “Reamde,” Chinese gamers or “gold farms” were busy playing EverQuest and other similar games in order to score experience points to level their characters thereby making them more powerful and in demand. These characters will then be sold on eBay to Western gamers who were unwilling or unable to invest hours to raise the level of their own characters. Based on EverQuest’s exchange rate, Edward Castronov, a professor of telecommunications at Indiana University and an expert in virtual currencies, estimated that in 2002 EverQuest was the 77th richest country in the world, somewhere between Russia and Russia. and its GDP per capita was greater than that of the People’s Republic of China and India.

Launched in 2003 and reaching 1 million regular users by 2014, Second Life is perhaps the most complete example of a virtual economy to date, when it is a virtual currency – a fake dollar that can be used to buy or sell gaming goods and services. . exchange for real currencies through market exchanges. In the 10 years between 2002-13, $ 3.9 billion was recorded in virtual goods gaming transactions. Second life became a market where players and businesses could develop, promote and sell the content they created. Real estate was a particularly lucrative commodity to trade, in 2006 Eileen Graf became the second millionaire of Second Life when she turned an initial investment of $ 9.95 into more than $ 1 million over 2.5 years through the purchase, sale and trading of virtual real estate other players. Examples like Eileen are an exception to the rule, however only 233 users earned more than $ 5,000 in 2009 on Second Life activities.

How to pay in dollars for asteroid mining …

To date, the ability to generate non-virtual cash in video games has been secondary because the player has to go through unauthorized channels to share his virtual booty or he has to have some creativity or business acumen. which could be traded for cash. This may change with the advent of video games that are built from scratch around the “plumbing” of recognized digital currency platforms. The approach used by HunterCoin is “gamification,” which is usually a fairly technical and automated process of creating digital currency. Unlike real-world currencies, which emerge when printed by the Central Bank, digital currencies are created by “mining” by users. The basic source code of a particular digital currency that allows it to function is called blockchain, an Internet-decentralized government book that records all transactions and currency exchanges between individuals. Because digital currency is nothing more than intangible data, it is more prone to fraud than physical currency, because you can duplicate a unit of currency by causing inflation or changing the value of a transaction after it is done for personal purposes. To prevent this, the blockchain is “guarded” by volunteers or “miners” who verify the authenticity of each transaction, so that with the help of special hardware and software they ensure that the data will not be tampered with. This is an automated process for Miner software, albeit extremely time consuming, that involves more computing power from their computer. To reward Miner for verifying the transaction, the blockchain releases a new unit of digital currency and rewards them with it as an incentive to continue to maintain the network, thus creating a digital currency. Because a person can successfully mine coins from a few days to a few years, user groups pool their resources into a mining pool, using the combined computing power of their computers to extract coins faster.

The game HunterCoin is in such a blockchain for digital currency, which is also called HunterCoin. The act of the game replaces the automated process of extracting digital currency and for the first time makes it manual and without the need for expensive equipment. Using strategy, time and teamwork, players are selected on the map in search of coins, and if they find them and return safely to their base (other teams there try to stop them and steal their coins), they can cash their coins by depositing them in their A digital wallet is usually an app designed to receive and receive digital payments. 10% of the value of any coins deposited by players is sent to miners who support the HunterCoin blockchain, as well as a small percentage of any coins lost when a player is killed and their coins are dropped. While game graphics are basic, and significant rewards take time to accumulate HunterCoin – this is an experiment that can be seen as the first video game with a cash prize built as a main feature.

Although VoidSpace is still under development, it is a more appropriate approach to gaming in the current economy. A massively multiplayer online gaming game (MMORPG), VoidSpace is located in a space where players explore an ever-growing universe, extract natural resources such as asteroids, and trade them for goods along with other players in order to create their own galactic empire. Players will be rewarded for mining in DogeCoin, a more established form of digital currency that is now widely used for micropayments on various sites on social media. DogeCoin will also be an in-game currency between players and a means to buy in-game. Like HunterCoin, DogeCoin is a legitimate and fully functioning digital currency, and like HunterCoin, exchanges such as Poloniex can trade in both digital and real currency.

The future of video games?

Although in terms of quality early days, the release of HunterCoin and VoidSpace is an interesting testament to what could be the next development of the games. MMORPGs are now seen as a way to simulate outbreaks of epidemics as a result of a player’s reaction to an unintentional plague reflecting recorded hard-to-simulate aspects of human behavior on outbreaks in the real world. It can be assumed that ultimately gaming virtual economies can be used as models to test economic theories and develop responses to massive failures based on observations of how players use digital currency with real value. It is also a good test of the functionality and potential application of digital currencies that promise to go beyond simple vehicles and, for example, move into the exciting realms of personal digital ownership. At the same time, players now have the ability to convert hours in front of the screen into digital currency and then into dollars, sterling, euros or yen.

But before you quit your day job …

… it is worth mentioning the current exchange rates. It is assumed that the player can comfortably reimburse their down payment of 1,005 HunterCoin (HUC) for joining the HunterCoin game for 1 day of play. Currently, HUC cannot be exchanged directly for USD, it needs to be converted into a more established digital currency such as Bitcoin. At the time of writing, the exchange rate of HUC to bitcoin (BC) is 0.00001900, and the exchange rate BC to USD is 384.24 dollars. 1 HUC traded in BC and then in US dollars, before taking into account the transaction fee, it would have been … 0.01 US dollars. This is not to say that as a player becomes more aware that he cannot grow his team of virtual CoinHunters and may use multiple “bot” programs that will automatically play the game under the guise of another player and earn coins for them . but I think it is safe to say that at the moment even such efforts can really only lead to a change in the number of daily McDonald’s. If players don’t want to be subjected to intrusive game advertising, share personal information, or join a game like CoinHunter that is built on a bitcoin blockchain, it’s unlikely that the rewards can be more than micropayments for the average gamer. And maybe that’s a good thing, because maybe if you get paid for something, it will stop being a game?