Online Gaming Platforms May Be the Next "Killer App" For Blockchain Technology

  • Online gaming such as ESports is becoming increasingly popular.
  • Other than cryptocurrency, gaming platforms could also become a legitimate use case for blockchain technology.

Darryn Pollock, a Forbes contributor who writes mainly about finance and economics, recently pointed out the similarities between the evolving blockchain industry and the “global phenomenon” that online gaming has become.

Pollock noted that the gaming sector is similar to the nascent distributed ledger technology (DLT) industry as they’re both “run by people who are technologically inclined, and predominantly younger.”

Gaming Platforms' Popularity Is Increasing

Pollock, who writes extensively on the regulation and adoption of blockchain and cryptocurrency, mentioned that mainstream consumers do not fully understand many of the concepts related to the world’s gaming economy. This, despite the rising popularity of ESports - which involves organized, multiplayer online video game competitions.

Similarly, many of the important concepts related to blockchain-based networks and cryptographic assets are hard for many less tech savvy people to understand. Given that DLT-powered systems and gaming platforms share many similarities, Pollock argues that online games could be “blockchain’s killer app.”

Gaming Is "Far More Receptive Space" Than Crypto

According to Pollock, the gaming industry has “the right people” and “environment” to handle a “disruptive technological upgrade.” Compared to the crypto space, gamers are “far more receptive ... to technological change”, Pollock wrote.

Commenting on the potential application of DLT to the development of more sophisticated online gaming networks, Andrew Colosimo, the founder at Xaya, a UK-based blockchain platform for gamers, said:

I think gaming definitely has the potential for being a catalyst for bringing more of the masses to blockchain. Gamers, particular PC gamers are normally somewhat technical and typically enthusiasts who like new technology, and blockchain does need that bit of expertise at the moment. From our point of view - we know there is going to be a market for blockchain gaming but it needs to be approached carefully.

Andrew Colosimo

However, Colosimo acknowledged that “it’s still early days” for blockchain, and that even though large investments are being made to develop DLT-powered games, “there [are] actually very little gamers playing.”

Improving "User Experience"

He revealed that the most popular blockchain-based games only have “10s of daily active users” as it’s more of a “niche” at present. Current challenges such as poor “user experience” and overly complex nature of blockchain-based gaming platforms must be addressed before mass adoption can be achieved, Colosimo noted.

He described the current blockchain-powered games as “slow” and criticized them for not having a well-developed theme. Also, games that are actually fast and engaging may not be using DLT for most parts, or features, of their platforms. They might just be using “blockchain as a buzzword only”, Colosimo said.

As CryptoGlobe recently covered, a blockchain-powered virtual reality (VR) game called Chainbreakers is currently being developed on the Ethereum-based Decentraland platform. The role-playing game is centered around events that took place in Ancient Greece.