What has happened in the beginning of 2022

As I explained in January’s article, 2022 is going to be the year of GameFi and January’s data confirms it.

According to Dapp Radar, the investment in the first month of the year was 1Billion $ and all of it went in games and their infrastructure.

This data is relevant as during 2021 the total investment was 4 Billion $. In only one month we had 25% of what was invested in the whole year of 2021 and need to take into account that the crypto market was at a low point at the beginning of the year. As we have already mentioned, this 2022 is going to be very interesting and busy.

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If we review the Google search trend for the NFT market, closely related to the world of blockchain gaming, we can see that its interest has been growing during the month of January.

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More and more people playing

The data provided by Dapp Radar tells us that the number of gaming dapp has grown by 52%, analysing the on-chain data, this means that there are more and more blockchain games waiting to continue to grow during the year.

Given the market situation, wallets connected to dapps have fallen since June 2021, but this was not the case in the gaming category that grew.

In the total number of UAW, the single connected wallets interacting grew by 2%, with more than 185,000 UAW on average per day in January. On the other hand, DeFi dapps seem to be more sensitive to the cryptocurrency market. Usage in this category fell 3%, with 825,000 UAW connected daily to DeFi dapps in the last month, according to data from the Dapp Radar.

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Polygon was the fastest growing network with a 76% increase in UAWs, surpassing 209,000 on average per day… a real blast.

This increase was due to the launch of very popular games on this network, such as Crazy Defense Heroes, a tower defence game like the popular Clash Royale, with P2E mechanics also available for mobile. CDH was the most popular dapp on Polygon, only surpassed by DEX QuickSwap.

Another interesting game launched was Arc8, still in beta version and owned by Gamee, a subsidiary of Animoca Brands.

The biggest news was the loss of the leadership of SunFlower Farmers, the network collapsed at its launch.

Polygon’s ecosystem is starting to expand with games such as Pegaxy, Aavegotchi, Fear, Phantom Galaxies, REVV Racing, Zed Run, Doctor Who: Worlds Apart, and the upcoming Galaxy Fight Club and Riot Racers among others. 

In addition, Polygon bets heavily on this sector through Polygon Studios, which has important partners such as Decentraland, The Sandbox or Animoca Brands, which of course is on all sites that have to do with blockchain gaming.

The top games remain

The most difficult thing in gaming and not only in blockchain games is user retention. This point is critical to their survival and is the case of the 3 biggest games on the market:

  • Splinterlands – this game has been most played according to metrics. This multiplayer collectible card game with a design that will make you think of a symbiosis between Pokemon card games and World of Warcraft characters has grown by 312,000 UAW on average per day during January.
  • Aliens Worlds – WAX’s flagship blockchain game, based on the simulation of Earth’s economy using the Trilium token and NFTs and that 2021 was the reference game in attracting players. In this 2022 it is being criticized in its game mechanics, but it continues to attract more than 205,000 UAW daily on average in January, being the second game with the most UAW.
  • Axie Infinity – the undisputed leader, with more than 2.8 million daily active users (DAUs) play Axie Infinity per day. However, Axie is in third place with more than 100,000 UAW per day on average in January, if we take into account on chain data.

From here we will see how the gaming segment shares over the coming months, given the exceptional situation we have today in Europe due to the war.

What’s next

As I have been explaining, on-chain gaming metrics show us that the sector is in a good moment. If we add to this that the most popular games continue to grow in number of players as well as the networks in which they run, as we see in games like DeFi Kingdoms, Bomb Crypto or Crazy Defense Heroes.

With all the data we have and the releases that are coming up, the increase in interest and number of users will continue to grow, and with the events coming up in the short term the interest will be even greater:

  • Illuvium closed beta– Illuvium is one of the most anticipated blockchain games ever. Labeled as a AAA game, the play-to-earn dapp will allow a limited number of qualified players to test one of the game’s features on the Immutable X solution.
  • Virtual Worlds alpha – Virtual worlds continue to expand problems. The second Sandbox alpha will bring more players and new mechanics. Meanwhile, the open social virtual world of Nifty Island launches its first alpha on February 17.
  • Axie Infinity economic adjustments – Changes to the SLP reward rate may affect game metrics in the short term, but will improve the long-term sustainability of the ecosystem. This is a very important point and may change the way we approach tokenomics in games.
  • And how can we miss the launch of the Outer Ring IDO at March 3rd, this you cannot miss.

From Belobaba we continue to firmly believe in this sector and we continue our investment in it, both in new projects in initial rounds and in projects already consolidated but with great growth potential. I myself will be next week at the Mobile World Congress, seeing new projects and technologies that will continue to evolve this sector. If you are in Barcelona and want to chat, don’t hesitate and let me know.