- NFT Worlds aims to become tokenized Minecraft.
- Instead of building a brand-new metaverse infrastructure, this project taps into the existing Minecraft ecosystem of software tools.
- NFT Worlds connects thousands of worlds into a unified metaverse platform with voxel assets as terrain NFTs.
NFT Worlds Filling the Growing Market
In April, Coingecko released a report on the NFT market. One of the more notable highlights is that the metaverse market is forecasted to expand to $800 billion within two years.
Even more tellingly, the entry point into this new crypto frontier is through blockchain gaming, with metaverse/gaming non-fungible tokens being the most common asset.
NFT Worlds is aiming to become a big slice of that market pie. Does it have what it takes to make it happen? Here is the overview of the project.
What Is NFT Worlds?
When deciding to develop a new virtual playground, what better starting point to pick than Minecraft?
Since 2011, Minecraft has grown into a gaming juggernaut with 141 million active players. In 2021 alone, the mobile Minecraft sandbox generated $160.7 million in revenue.
NFT Worlds doesn’t shy away from acknowledging this formidable legacy. The metaverse project picked the Minecraft model because millions of players are already accustomed to how it works, controls, and plays.
More importantly, Minecraft is an open-source ecosystem that was critical for its growth.
For this reason, the project bootstrapped itself to the vast range of Minecraft open-source tools, mods, and developer know-how.
In practice, this means that the project uses the Minecraft client itself, along with its key modding tools, MCEdit and WorldEdit.
An example of one of NFT Worlds.
With this Minecraft integration in place, NFT Worlds complements it with the blockchain element on top.
Every asset that a Minecraft creator/modder could build can then also be tokenized as they are run through smart contracts.
Such a system is then monetized with the native WRLD coin, a standard ERC-20 token.
This may sound similar to Decentraland or The Sandbox; however, NFT Worlds has key advantages over the two competing metaverse platforms:
- Due to Minecraft integration, NFT Worlds supports all mobile and desktop platforms: Windows, OSX, Linux, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox.
- In-game asset editor that allows real-time editing
- In-game interaction with smart contracts for minting and trading non-fungible tokens
- Decentralized servers for hosting all the interconnected worlds
- Much scarcer land NFT supply, at 10,000. For instance, Decentraland (MANA) has 90k land plots, while The Sandbox (SAND) has 166k.
- NFT Worlds can host many more players than competing platforms. For example, Decentraland has a limit of up to 60 players (depending on the server) in a single instance, while NFT Worlds has an upper limit of 400, with future upscaling in the range of thousands of players.
In short, this project tries to combine the best from established player habits and open-source software, making it into a customizable metaverse/blockchain gaming platform.
How Do NFT Worlds’ Projects Look in Action?
Open-source is a powerful tool to have. It breaks barriers to entry, as exemplified by the fact that Google’s Android operating system holds complete market dominance at 72% global market share.
NFT Worlds’ team picked Minecraft for this reason, as a solid jumping board.
Who is carrying the NFT Worlds’s open-source torch, then?
According to the project’s tracker, there are presently 121 teams involved in building a vast range of metaverse play-to-earn (P2E) experiences.
From MMORPG to shooters and event socializing, every type of mod that exists in Minecraft is up for grabs as a gameplay/metaverse category.
For instance, Crypto Zombiez NFT bought a land parcel in January for their upcoming metaverse.
Likewise, Hero Galaxy acquired eight NFT Worlds’ lands to bring their cat-themed non fungible tokenss and artifacts to the virtual realm.
If one were to envision how a metaverse would look like in the future, NFT Worlds is a close call. Any web3 team can participate as they use Minecraft’s open-source toolbox.
They simply buy the land NFT for their own take on the metaverse. Then, each world connects to the other via portals. Just like the internet itself, this creates a web of metaverse platforms and experiences.
However, one has to keep in mind that the aesthetic is limited to the blocky Minecraft-y look. Some projects may avoid NFT Worlds for this very reason.
At the moment, web3 developers can use project’s Minecraft 1.17 launcher that doesn’t support smart contract interaction. However, the project’s Launcher should be released in 2022.
In the meantime, existing NFT Worlds can be explored with the web-based DApp.
One only has to add the land’s number behind the nftworlds.com/ link. For instance, Voxel Ville treasury bought #4988, so the web exploration link would be nftworlds.com/4988 (press the mouse button to move the view, or double-click for full-screen and move the view with mouse movement).
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How Is The Project Monetized?
Just like how APE coin is the driver for Yuga Labs’ future Otherside platform, so is the WRLD token for NFT Worlds. Fully compatible with the Ethereum ecosystem, WRLD is an ERC-20 token capped at 5 billion coins. Its smart contract is visible here at Etherscan.
The team will hold only 5% of WRLD tokens in their treasury, making it one of the more decentralized token distributions.
Those who have bought one of the non-fungible worlds can use WRLD tokens to pay for any interaction they have programmed into their metaverse world.
This could range from customization of items and character attributes to event access and future character NFTs themselves. Of course, the WRLD token also pays for gas fees involved in transactions.
To make the metaverse experience as cheap as possible, NFT Worlds takes advantage of Ethereum’s sidechain, Polygon, with its effectively gasless transactions.
However, those not familiar with layer-2 scalability solutions or not holding Polygon’s MATIC tokens, can opt to use NFT World’s own payment portal by simply connecting their wallets.
Since March, when the most people bought WRLD tokens, there has been a sharp drop in the number of new users.
The WRLD coin hit an ATH a month prior, in February at $0.58, following a shopping spree of some of its 10,000 available world NFTs.
Speaking of worlds themselves, the current average floor price for an NFT Worlds’ land is Ξ4.1 (~$8.5k). Out of 10,000 worlds, 775 have owners, which is just 7.75% of total worlds’ supply. Overall, they generated Ξ48.1k in sales or ~$100.5 million.
The daily number of trades has not been massive, but it has been steady. So far there have been over 15,000 trades related to the NFT Worlds collection.
The main source of P2E income for NFT Worlds holders should come from the oldest passive income in the world — becoming a landlord.
Specifically, by staking land NFTs in exchange for WRLD tokens, which could then be optionally set as available for renting.
Owners can customize the monthly rent of each individual NFT world. Interestingly, just like in the real world, if the renter defaults on a monthly payment, the owner gets the initial deposit, which is required to rent the world.
Of course, the entire process is done automatically through smart contracts, so there is no landlord-renter altercation!
Who Is Behind NFT Worlds?
The core NFT Worlds team consists of two developers, @iamarkdev and @temptranquil. These Americans started the project in September 2021.
As avid Minecraft players and entrepreneurs, they saw the NFTs momentum as an excellent opportunity to take the plunge.
However, while other companies built their own metaverse infrastructure, they used the Minecraft shortcut to get ahead of the game. After all, Minecraft doesn’t have any ecosystem licenses to contend with.
In one of the interviews, @iamarkdev noted that The Sandbox was one of the biggest sources of inspiration. However, they wanted to accomplish true decentralization, which is only possible by going the open-source route.
Yet, there is some concern involved in their approach. The problem is, Minecraft is in the legal gray zone when it comes to its code.
Technically, Minecraft’s modding community made it open-source by decompiling it. However, this source code is not exactly equivalent to free licensing.
Is NFT Worlds a Sound Project?
While establishing the lowest entry possible is beneficial for growth, it also creates a weakness. Another team can come along and implement the exact same open-source, Minecraft-bootstrapped project.
In fact, Microsoft itself, the owner of Minecraft, could do it. To illustrate, Microsoft already partnered with Enjin last February.
Enjin is a turn-key software solution for NFT-minting and trading, taking the development load off of web3 developers.
Therefore, even existing Minecraft servers can take advantage of such turn-key NFTs solution and create a snowballing copy-cat situation.
With that said, NFT Worlds does have a significant first-mover advantage, with over a hundred NFT projects already committed to using their procedurally generated worlds.
In the current bearish crypto market, it is expected that this project would suffer volume decline, having gone Ξ50 trading volume in May.
However, NFT Worlds is still a very young project. Since last September, the novel concept of a completely open-source, customizable, and decentralized metaverse has accrued 147k Twitter followers and 25.2k Discord members, according to Omnimint.
In the end, the game’s success depends on the demand. How many players will leave regular Minecraft in favor of the tokenized version?
In turn, that depends on existing projects in the works. Consequently, NFT Worlds’ potential is massive, but could as easily be deflated.
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