The NFT or non-fungible token is a cryptographic virtual item that represents something unique. Unlike cryptocurrencies, which are replicated and exchanged identically, the NFT is unique, indivisible, and transferable .For everything else, this blockchain-based technology may be used to create and distribute all types of material, including music, movies, video games, the metaverse, and other virtual worlds.
If NFTs began to be talked about on a large scale last year , what does 2022 hold? Will it be a fad that will be forgotten or are there really exciting projects on the horizon that will make NFT commonplace in certain industries for years to come?
Sports and NFTs
The international consultation Deloitte predicted at the end of last year that NFTs related to sports will generate around 2,000 million US dollars in 2022. And that more than 5 million fans will acquire an NFT product during this year. But to make this possible, platforms and projects that offer sports-related NFTs need to emerge. Something that already exists.
One of the most popular NFT projects in the sports field is NBA Top Shot , the official NFT platform of the NBA, the American basketball league. Making a comparison with the classic trading cards and stickers that sport has always used as a claim, the NBA has created NFTs starring its franchises, players and highlights. It is in beta phase but it already allows you to purchase NFTs in its own marketplace using Bitcoin, Ethereum, DAI or USD Coin.
American football also offers its NFTs through the NFL All Day platform , managed by Dapper. In its marketplace you can search by player, team, position or price. As a curiosity, the NFTs offered correspond to videos with the most outstanding plays of the most iconic players.
Beyond the collection of images or videos, the NFT development has much to contribute to the world of sports. For example, virtual tickets. Soccer teams such as Paris Saint-Germain or Manchester City have created fan tokens that allow them to decide aspects of the club, such as the music that will be played before the game. And in the future it is expected to use NFTs in the form of season tickets so that the most loyal fan has an incentive. In addition to watching matches, you will save a digital memory of them.
NFTs in video games
Released in 2018, Axie Infinity is an online video game that can be played on PC, Mac, iOS, and Android. One of its peculiarities is that it is based on blockchain technology and uses NFTs to play. As a result, in the summer of 2021 it was considered the most valued NFT collection. Developed by a Vietnamese company, Sky Mavis , it uses Ethereum-based cryptocurrencies to run the game.
Another success story is The Sandbox , an online gaming platform that resembles Minecraft and which, in practice, offers itself as a metaverse in which to play, own virtual land, create your own games, etc. Like other projects, it uses the Ethereum network for its operation and has its own cryptocurrency called Sand .
More video games based on NFTs. Battle of Guardians , an arena-style multiplayer game and using the Unreal Engine game engine. Designed for PC, it can also be played on iOS and Android. Or Gods Unchained . Another card game like Axie Infinity in which the playing cards are precisely NFTs.
Special mention for CryptoKitties , the first game created on the Ethereum network, back in 2017. The characters are cats with different outfits and characteristics that, precisely, are NFT elements that can be sold and bought on the OpenSea platform.
And to finish, one of the games that combines metaverse and NFT with more projection. Its name is Silks and it is inspired by horse racing. We can get human avatars, horses and participate in virtual races that are determined by horse races in the real world. At the moment it is available in a trial period for those who ask for early access . Like other games mentioned above, Silks joins the list of play-to-earn (P2E) NFT games, that is, they allow you to earn cryptocurrencies in exchange for playing.
The metaverse and NFTs
Some of the most interesting projects related to NFT development are also related to the metaverse. Virtual spaces in which you can interact in a way that is equivalent to the real world. A world of avatars that can acquire virtual space or land to build, create or do whatever they see fit.
There are several examples. We have previously mentioned The Sandbox as an online game based on the metaverse concept. Another of these rising projects is Decentraland . The idea is to create a virtual world owned by its users, not third parties. In other words, you can visit the worlds and spaces already created or be a creator and create your own scenarios. The NFT and blockchain component is in the virtual items. In the marketplace, you will find everything from avatar clothing, plots or land to build and create, registered names, etc.
Other games or platforms that recreate virtual worlds in the metaverse are CryptoVodels and Somnium Space . Together with the previous two platforms or games, last year they generated more than 105.8 million US dollars in the sale of virtual space, equipment for avatars, etc.
A whole universe of opportunities
Beyond what we have seen, during 2022 there will be a multitude of proposals and projects related to NFTs and their involvement in the real world or in the digital world. On this first, projects that use the NFT as a claim for more traditional topics such as the love of coffee ( Crypto Barista ), exclusive foods ( Flyfish Club ), avatars to use in social networks ( Doodles, DeeKay, Women Rise ) are beginning to emerge. or signatures of athletes and other well-known figures ( Autograph.io ).
In short, the blockchain and especially cryptocurrencies and NFTs are going to play an important role both in the current Internet and in the metaverse, which is expanding at full speed with games and platforms beyond the domains of giants such as Microsoft or Meta ( formerly Facebook). It remains to be seen how far its dimensions will go this year.