If you’ve been keeping an eye on tech-related news, you’ll know that Facebook’s Meta isn’t exactly our first attempt at building a metaverse. In fact, if we’re being technically accurate, the metaverse has been around for quite some time already.
From ‘play-to-earn’ games to online casino slots in extended reality (XR), several examples of metaverse video games already exist. In order to give you an idea of what metaverse games look like, let’s take a look at eight current and future releases that you can expect to play in 2022.
Since its release back in 2018, Axie Infinity has grown into a tremendously popular play-to-earn game. It uses the Pokemon franchise as its inspiration, giving players the opportunity to build, trade, and fight with a collection of unique creatures.
The creatures, named Axie, are used in PvP battles, with NFTs being awarded to the victorious player. These NFTs can be sold to other players, and the seller receives crypto in return. Axie Infinity’s economy works so well that some players are able to earn a living simply by playing the game.
Decentraland is a virtual world that gives players complete freedom to own all in-game assets, environments, and hub-based activities. The economy is based on cryptocurrency markets, and players are encouraged to trade amongst each other.
You can choose a piece of land or build your own virtual environment, buy and sell virtual real estate or even rent out a property in exchange for crypto. With multiple in-game events happening daily, Decentraland is a socially-driven game that meets all the criteria for a metaverse.
Illuvium is an upcoming RPG game that will use the Ethereum blockchain as the foundation for its play-to-earn economy. Despite being in early development, the game has already garnered a significant following thanks to stellar graphics and AAA-quality production.
In a similar way to Pokemon and Axie Infinity, Illuvium lets players collect and trade unique creatures. These “Illuvials” vary in power and rarity, and their value is based on an in-game cryptocurrency. Essentially, every Illuvial is a tradable NFT.
The Sandbox Game
Did you know that a 2013 mobile game, released for Microsoft systems in 2015, is currently the world’s leading metaverse game? As proof of its success, The Sandbox Game has secured a partnership HSBC, the second biggest multinational bank in Europe.
Through blockchain-verified transactions, players can craft their own universes from assets built by other players. Everything is built by players, from custom avatars to the very worlds they inhabit, and all creations can be sold on an open market in-game.
Sorare is a global fantasy football game. Using Ethereum-based blockchain technology, players can buy, sell, trade, and manage a virtual team of five soccer players. Each player is represented by a digital card, and each card’s value is based on live performance statistics.
On the Sorare platform, every card is licensed as a digital collectible. Over 100 clubs have officially licensed Sorare, including those within the Major League’s Players Association and the Belgian Jupiler Pro League.
With live in-game concerts and a seasonal events calendar, Fortnite is every bit a metaverse, by all definitions of the word. Every child’s favorite battle royale may seem like nothing more than a competent, competitive shooter, but its integration of live performances makes it a pioneer of metaverse-based games.
Fortnite’s developer, Epic Games, has proven just how successful live service games can be. Thanks to consistent updates, creative game mechanics, and numerous tie-ins with pop culture media, Fortnite is now a multi-genre entertainment platform.
With a built-in game creation system at its core, Rec Room is a social hub that provides its users with all the tools they need to create games of their own. Like many metaverse games, players choose in-game avatars and interact with each other in a virtual setting.
Rec Room uses a hub-based platform, and players congregate in virtual social spaces. Essentially, it’s a VR chat room where users can show off their game design skills, find unique video game experiences, and explore the virtual worlds of other players.
Second Life has been around for quite some time. It was released in 2003, making it the oldest game on our list by a large margin. It’s been described as a multimedia platform, but it might be time for us to consider its viability as a metaverse game.
Your customizable avatar interacts with others in a virtual world. You can freely explore the world, socialize with others, and engage in group activities. There’s virtual property to buy and sell, digital goods to trade, and a wealth of 3D user-generated content. If that isn’t the definition of a metaverse game, then we don’t know what is.