With talk of the Metaverse now regularly hitting headlines, the world is getting excited about the prospect of inhabiting digital worlds. Through a combination of existing tech, crypto, and virtual reality, Metaverse projects are set to revolutionize the way in which we interact with each other, both socially and professionally. For many, Metaverse projects represent the next stage of the internet, with crypto technology essential to establish true ownership within digital spaces.
With Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg breaking the red ribbon to enter the Metaverse, Facebook’s brand name change to Meta is a red alert for all investors and people in the blockchain community that’s there something big in the Metaverse.
The Metaverse and the NFT Boom is super hot right now just as exciting it is, we are all also going to see a lot of changes happening in the next 3 to 5 years. Most notably in the Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality segments, where the Metaverse can fully thrive. This is where, the Facebook’s complete brand name change really comes into play, as Mark Zuckerberg has been working on the VR technology for several years now, with his development of his VR product called the Oculus Rift and Oculus Quest.
Metaverse isn’t a new thing at all that’s happening. We’ve just been experiencing Metaverse in a different way all this time. If you are a gamer, you will understand this in a much better way. It’s just a fact that the term Metaverse has finally become alive and the way we experience different worlds is now being termed as Metaverse.
Think about it, the game Grand Theft Auto or GTA itself is an entire Metaverse of it’s own. It has it’s own unique world, where gamers can do a lot of things. Take Minecraft for example, which is also a Metaverse. The only difference is that, these games haven’t used the idea or technology of blockchain and NFT’s at the moment. The moment they do, you can just imagine, how many Metaverse will emerge.
With Facebook rebranding to “Meta” and promising to plow billions into the development of their own Metaverse platform, the space as a whole is expected to explode.
While this is still early days for the Metaverse, there are already some really exciting projects in development.
Here, we’ll look at the top 10 most interesting Metaverse projects to get excited about.
What is a Metaverse?
First though, what is a Metaverse anyway?
The concept of a Metaverse represents a shared, virtual reality that digitally represents a 3D space where people can interact. This can be a recreation of a real-life location such as an office or home with realistic human-like avatars. It could also be outlandish, with people able to enter a cartoonish world with unrealistic physics and an avatar drastically different from their real-life appearance.
Metaverse development is becoming increasingly dependent on blockchain technology, using cryptocurrencies and immutability to establish ownership and enable more decentralized access and interoperability between these digital spaces.
While still in their infancy, Metaverse spaces are typically used for recreation and social reasons. However, the expectation is for the Metaverse as a whole to eventually be used for business and for other commercial reasons.
Despite being nascent technology, the following are the most exciting Metaverse projects currently in development.
Consisting of over 90,000 parcels of land, Decentraland single-handedly kickstarted the digital real-estate boom.
Decentraland runs on the Ethereum blockchain and allows users to explore, create, and trade using NFT technology. In the Decentraland metaverse, you can play games, run a casino with cryptocurrencies, host events, showcase your NFT art, and explore other people’s creations thanks to the implementation of smart contracts.
Launched publicly in February 2020, the virtual world is overseen by the Decentraland Foundation, a non-profit organization tasked with helping the metaverse to flourish.
With the London-based auction house Sotheby’s using Decentraland to house their virtual headquarters, and real estate company, Republic Realm paying nearly a million dollars for some land, it’s clear that Decentraland is one of the most exciting metaverse projects to get involved in.
You can access Decentraland by visiting the official website.
2. The Sandbox
Getting the attention of big names such as Adidas (who’ve already purchased some land), The Sandbox metaverse is a user-generated decentralized blockchain-based virtual world.
The Sandbox is one of the most exciting Metaverse projects that might interest a lot of creative gamers out there. Sure, it’s a game that is just not limited to gamers, anyone can be a part of the Sandbox Metaverse.
Based on the incredibly popular mobile games of the same name, The Sandbox metaverse is a fully-fledged 3D world that looks like an exceptionally polished version of Minecraft. Within the world, users can freely explore, buy land, develop on it, trade, and create interactive assets using the suite of tools available.
The Sandbox began as a 2D Mobile Pixel game, which you can still download on Google play. After the hype of NFT’s and the Metaverse, the developers Sebastien Borget and Arthur Madrid realized that they wanted to explore the idea of asset ownership, NFT’s and the idea of rewarding players for playing the game.
The Sandbox Metaverse was thus created, the gamers can create their own NFT’s, buy land or even create their own game within the Sandbox Metaverse by using the Gamemaker.
There’s a whole ton of things that you can do in the Sandbox Metaverse and I’ve written an entire article about it, so if you want to know more about the Sandbox, be sure to read that article here.- What is the Sandbox? Everything You Need To Know About The Sandbox Metaverse
Importantly, the project’s co-founder, Sebastien Borget, insists The Sandbox represents a truly decentralized metaverse. Borget and others are concerned that the metaverse and web 3.0 as a whole is likely to try and be taken over by Big Tech, just as web 2.0 was. Instead of pleasing shareholders, Borget insists that decentralized projects like Sandbox will put the user first.
3. Axie Infinity
While we’ve already got used to thinking of the metaverse in terms of shared 3D spaces, Axie Infinity represents the 2D contingent.
Developed by Sky Mavis, Axie Infinity sees players battle cute monsters called Axies earning cryptocurrency as they do so. This crypto can then be used to trade, breed, boost, and also buy land.
Inspired by the Pokemon universe, Axie Infinity is a game that shares a lot of similarities with Pokemon. In the game, you are able to breed monsters called Axies, which is used in turn to battle against other players.
In return , players earn SLP(Smooth Love potions) Tokens through those battle which can be traded or even sold for real world money.
Axie Infinity is built with the play-to-earn concept, which means, the more you play the game, the more rewards you will get in the form of real world money. Of-course, you will need convert the tokens or ETH into fiat currency.
It’s one of the hottest blockchain games out there and in fact, gamers in the Philippines are actually making a full time income playing the game.
Outside of the core gameplay loop, Axie Infinity is a truly permissionless metaverse where users interact with each other directly through blockchain technology. With the game exploding in popularity in 2021, the expectation is that Axie Infinity will dominate in the future as well.
There is just so much opportunity out there with the game and Axie Infinity Token(AXS) is also one of the highest ranked coin in Coin Market Cap. It’s currently priced at $102 Dollars as of December 2021, and well, it’s likely to rise in value in the future as the Metaverse trends grow bigger!.
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4. Sin City
Sin City is a metaverse project that allows people to build an empire and earn crypto at the same time.
Dubbed the “Grand Theft Auto” of the metaverse, Sin City will allow players to cruise the streets, battle rival gangs, form factions, acquire assets, and also purchase real estate.
Central to the Sin City metaverse is the idea of factions. Joining a faction will see players band together to pool resources and real estate to build an empire. Thanks to crypto technology, factions can establish their own tax rules and sort out who’s the real kingpin.
The world will feature both high and low-security zones, with the latter owned by factions and gangs. High-security zones can be safely explored but offer less reward for exploring, unlike the riskier low-security zones owned by other players.
According to the project’s whitepaper, the Sin City metaverse is set to launch a beta test in q1 2022.
5. My Meta MMO
My Meta MMO is a full 3D MMO RPG in which players can create communities of AI-driven META characters which farm, battle, breed, and mine.
Still in early development, the game is being developed by My Meta Studio, an arm of the popular crypto company Enjin. The company specializes in building user-generated metaverses integrating play-to-earn mechanics to make metaverses self-sustaining and governing.
The game will feature an assortment of META-beings that come in human, alien, and fantasy species. As a community-based metaverse, the world will allow cooking, crafting, and farming together.
So far, the My Meta MMO world is comprised of 4 worlds, including a theme park, a Japanese-inspired land, a medieval fantasy land called Eldenvale, and an undetermined “New World.”
Illuvium is an open-world RPG that’s based on the Ethereum blockchain. In the metaverse, players will be able to earn ETH by journeying across vast and diverse landscapes completing quests, and capturing god-like monsters called Illuvials. With deep lore behind the project, players can unravel the mystery of the world’s cataclysmic state as they play.
Illuvium is set to be released in Q1 2022 and offers a free-to-play entry point. As well as the gameplay aspect, Illuvium features 100k land plots for players to inhabit the world, available to purchase and own as NFTs.
Developed by Nakamoto Games, Nakaverse is set to be a virtual gaming world and economic system that will integrate seamlessly with the company’s other projects.
While details are scarce, the Nakaverse will provide multiple gaming experiences each with its own in-game economies. This will be achieved through virtual shops, museums, shopping malls, and restaurants. While the Nakaverse isn’t the first project to offer the sale of land plots, it’s the first to introduce the idea of each plot containing raw materials that can then be used to build and sell in-game goods. Each piece of land, therefore, has diverging intrinsic value.
Even with scant details, the project is causing a stir with enthusiasts already able to purchase plots of land and assets to populate the metaverse from the Nakaverse marketplace.
Fly state-of-the-art ships from the 27th century in this space-themed metaverse. Offering a virtual gaming metaverse using blockchain technology, Star Atlas lets players explore space, join factions, fight other players, and develop a career within the virtual world.
The game is yet to be launched but is being developed with the powerful and popular Unreal Engine 5, so expect some spectacular visuals and good performance. The use of Unreal Engine also means the game is fully VR-enabled.
According to the game’s whitepaper, the Star Atlas metaverse will be fully decentralized and will be based on Solana. Interestingly, it will feature DeFi integrated directly into the game via Serum as well as as a DEX.
Taking the popular book and movie as inspiration, MetaHero is attempting to let people re-enact “Ready Player-One.” MetaHero is the bridge between the real world and the metaverse.
MetaHero uses state-of-the-art 3D scanning and modeling to generate “ultra-realistic 3D avatars and virtual items.” These avatars and items will be used across a variety of platforms including games, social media, online fashion, and virtual reality. Best of all, these assets can be tokenized and be converted into NFTs, making them scarce and unique assets.
Scanning is being undertaken by Wolf Digital World, a leader in the space who has worked with CD Projekt Red on CyberPunk 2077.
Rather than creating their own metaverse, MetaHero is focusing on enabling the creation of 3D avatars and NFTs based on real-world assets. This is being facilitated by 3D chambers placed around the world, allowing anyone to scan anything, including themselves!
Items and assets will be able to be purchased and traded using the WDW marketplace and then used in a host of metaverse applications.
A decentralized metaverse based on Polygon, Bloktopia aims to provide unique VR experiences for the crypto community in engaging environments. Players can socialize, play games, have fun, and compete in a multitude of ways through the power of virtual reality, offering a truly unique first-person perspective.
Bloktopia itself is a 21-level skyscraper, a homage to the hard limit of 21 million Bitcoin. Token holders will be referred to as Bloktopians. Bloktopia will act as a central hub to facilitate metaverse experiences and immersive content, with each level looking and feeling unique.
Central to Bloktopia is the ability to generate revenue through multiple income streams. This could be maximizing the use of NFT-owned land, as well as passive earning, staking, and advertising.
The project is also going to integrate a “builder too” which will let users create art, programmable challenges, and interactive scenes.
The project’s lightpaper only features a short-term roadmap, but development is coming along nicely.