Research Shows Asia as Center of Blockchain Gaming

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Editing by Nathaniel Cajuday

  • In a recent study jointly conducted by CoinMarketCap and web3 data intelligence platform Xangle, it was concluded that Asia has the majority of gamers around the globe. Thus, game developers who will integrate blockchain technology will attract web3 adoption.
  • Meanwhile, the research also listed that Japanese and Korean game developers have the rising numbers in adopting and integrating blockchain to their games. 
  • Lastly, the paper showed that role-playing games (RPG), especially MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game), and casual games, are the most suitable game genres in the blockchain space.

In a recent study jointly conducted by CoinMarketCap and web3 data intelligence platform Xangle, it was revealed that blockchain gaming is blooming in Asia. Aside from this, the study also emphasized that WeMix, the Korean blockchain game developer behind MIR4, is the leading web3 gaming developer in the space while developers from South Korea and Japan are rising. Lastly, role-playing games (RPG), especially MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game), and casual games, are the most suitable game genres in the blockchain space.

Asia as Blockchain Gaming Hub 

“Asia’s gaming market is promising. It is not only the largest market in the world but brimming with growth potential,” they wrote in CoinMarketCap Alexandria website.

Noting that in 2019, 55% of the world’s total gamers, or about 1.7 billion players, are from Asia alone, the research highlighted that the gaming industry has generated $72 billion, or approximately 52%, of the world’s annual gaming revenue in Asia Pacific.

According to the study, China, Japan, and South Korea are the leading gaming markets in the region. 62 out of the top 100 gaming companies in the world by market capitalization are also from these three countries. 

Consequently, Japanese and Korean game developers are recently making moves to adopt and integrate blockchain technology into their games. But in China, cryptocurrencies remain banned in their country. 

Blockchain Gaming Leader: WeMade

WeMade, a Korean game company behind the popular game IP “The Legend of Mir,” was dubbed by the research as a “blockchain gaming leader” for its recent success where it grew significantly to $300 million annual revenue due to the success of its blockchain game, “MIR4 Global.”

The study credited the firm’s success to three factors, leveraging the popular game IP, “The Legend of Mir”, introducing play-to-earn (P2E) mechanics during the crypto bull market, and providing a user-friendly service with low transaction fees.

They also highlighted that “Mir4 Global”, based on the blockchain project “Wemix,” has “strong P2E characteristics and has gained popularity among users in emerging countries in Asia, such as the Philippines.” 

It can be remembered that last month, Filipino media personality and web3 gaming ambassadress Myrtle Sarrosa’s fan token,   MYRTLE, on WeMix exceeded a market cap of $100 million. 

“By using ‘The Legend of Mir’ IP, Mir4 Global was able to offer a game with competitive elements such as storyline and graphics compared to existing Web3 native blockchain games. The release of the game during the crypto bull market also provided a favorable environment for Mir4 Global and Wemix, resulting in a cycle of rising token prices, increasing P2E profits, more users, and ultimately higher token prices. Additionally, the decision to utilize Klaytn’s sidechain to allow users to utilize the blockchain infrastructure at a lower fee was meaningful to users who had grown tired of high fees. Wemix was able to avoid the high fees that Axie had experienced in the past,” the researchers stated.

Originally, ‌WeMix developers set up WEMIX as a stablecoin backed by USDC. The first plan to maintain its 1:1 ratio with USDC is that every time the value of $WEMIX exceeds 1 USDC, the protocol (called “DIOS”) will issue more WEMIX to repeg it back to the USDC value.

However, the fate of WEMIX turned sour as the Digital Asset eXchange Association (DAXA), an alliance formed by five local crypto exchanges in South Korea (Upbit, Korbit, Coinone, Bithumb, and Gopax), announced that they will delist WEMIX by December 2022.

$WEMIX is the top 10 most searched token by Filipinos in CoinGecko for 2022. 

Other Korean and Japanese Game Developers in Blockchain

In August 2022, Korean gaming company Gravity had a partnership with virtual world developer The Sandbox to bring the popular MMORPG game Ragnarok into the metaverse. 

Krafton, the South Korean gaming giant and developer of popular video game PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), also expressed its desire to venture into crypto last April 2022 collaborating with blockchain startup Solana Labs to develop blockchain games.

Last September, Japanese gaming firms Bandai Namco and SEGA also revealed that they are trying to enter ‌mainstream blockchain game adoption.

Japanese gaming giant Square Enix, the developer of Final Fantasy, is also set to launch their first web3 game, Symbiogenesis, in Polygon. In May 2022, they signed a share transfer agreement with Sweden-based Embracer Group AB, and sold some of its overseas studios and Intellectual Properties (IPs) to enter the blockchain space. 

Game Genres of Blockchain Gaming

In addition, the study stated that the game genres that are suitable for blockchain are role-playing games (RPG), especially MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game), and casual games.

“In MMORPG(Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game), users create their own characters and own the items. Enabling ownership of digital assets constitutes the backbone of the whole notion of blockchain, and NFTs in the games will allow the assets, items, and characters to be transferred to the users so that ownership is fully acknowledged. MMORPGs are games where users get to expand and complete the content by playing and interacting with a large number of other players in a virtual world,” they explained. 

As per the researchers, blockchain technology and web3 philosophy are also applicable to MMORPG’s in-game reward system, as they may also compensate ‌users for their contribution to the ecosystem.

The paper also pointed out that in Asia, casual games will be successful as Asians have “historically favored casual games.”

“The low spec requirement of casual games is well suited to the blockchain environment where scalability remains an issue. The current level of scalability capacity does not allow L1 and L2 blockchains to fully onboard on-chain blockchain games that are supposed to handle tens of millions of transactions. Compared to other genres, casual games, which are designed to be simple, require relatively fewer transactions and can be onboarded to the blockchain,” the research read. 

This article is published on BitPinas: Research Shows Asia as Center of Blockchain Gaming

Disclaimer: BitPinas articles and its external content are not financial advice. The team serves to deliver independent, unbiased news to provide information for Philippine-crypto and beyond.

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