W.ildWorks, known for popular mobile games like Animal Jam, is making the move into NFTs and the Metaverse.
At the end of November, the Utah-based game developer announced its entry into the crypto world with Cinder, a blockchain-based Metaverse world. Sometime in January, WildWorks will launch 11,111 NFT avatars named Cinder Fae, spawning a “Create to Earning” economy that will allow players to “convert game content they’ve designed into NFTs stored on the efficient Solana blockchain,” so the announcement of the company.
Founded in 2003, WildWorks is traditionally a video game company. Animal Jam, his most popular game, topped 130 million users, but WildWorks CEO Clark Stacey says Cinder will be different. It’s not just a mobile game, he says. “I hesitate to really refer to Cinder as a game because it’s not your traditional RPG or MMO-like experience, but rather a virtual world that you inhabit, that players can walk in, or users can walk in and create cool things in the world and earn money with it if you want. “
“It’s more of a social experience where games can take place, but it’s not that you have a narrative to follow or interact with non-player characters.”
Stacey says he was initially skeptical of the blockchain-based gaming space. In a November post on Medium, he wrote that if you had told him a year ago that WildWorks would make its blockchain-based entry, “I would have rolled my eyes to the back of my head.”
He cited environmental concerns with some cryptocurrencies and skepticism about the value blockchain games would actually bring to consumers. As for environmental concerns, WildWorks says the NFT Mint for Cinder will have less of a carbon footprint than the credit card transactions processed in other games by using the Solana blockchain. And at Cinder, he believes the value will be found quickly by users as the virtual world will be accessible on the first day of the NFT launch and players will have more control over their in-game creations.
In a few years, we could look to the future of the virtual world, where people actually own the data they create in-game as opposed to in-game content that has no financial worth outside of the game. “I’ve been making games for 27 or 28 years now. A lot of technologies are coming out that people are sure will revolutionize gaming and they are not. I think that’s where we see most of what people came up with in blockchain technology right now, you could do it with an ordinary database and this is just a complicated and busy way of doing what a database would do .
“We loved it when we started seeing things that couldn’t be easily done with an ordinary database, and that’s things like players owning and controlling the content they create in the game.” just a lot easier and safer with blockchain technology, and that’s going to be exciting, ”says Stacey. “Will that change the game industry? I think Web3 technologies as a whole will absolutely do it. And they will as the mobile gaming revolution and after the introduction of the iPhone in the West changed that landscape. And I think a lot of systems and even the legal framework have to catch up, but right now we’re seeing games coming out that really do new things and playing to earn is one of them. But I think there will be many more branches of the smart contract functionality that we probably haven’t even thought of. “
NFT-based games have “the ability to completely turn the table and put control in the hands of players and creators,” Stacey wrote on Medium. “Imagine a platform like Roblox. They provide a platform for users to develop and distribute games, and in return for providing that platform, they earn 75 percent of the income from their users’ work. They don’t create gaming experiences themselves, they aren’t the ones whose creative output actually captivates players, but they get 75 percent of what creators deserve because they control the platform and own the performance of its users, ”he wrote.
“If I create a really cool avatar in Roblox and someone wants to buy it from me, I can’t sell it to them without the platform intervention. I can only make money from my creative work if she allows it, and her platform is the only place where my work can be sold. “
Stacey wrote that Cinder “will fall back on the scaffolding of Feral,” a wildworks game where players control their own mythical animals. Feral will not adopt NFT and blockchain gaming because “the Feral community deserves to evolve in its own way and crypto gaming is not what its members signed up for”. Cinder may look like Feral in some respects, “but the similarity ends there”.
Cinder NFT avatars will be available once they are minted in January, although this is only the third phase of the project. In phase four, betas for avatar editors and room editors will be available, along with live events for NFT owners, in-game NFT in-game galleries, and a countdown to a new avatar mint. Cinder says the marketplace will start in phase six. In phase eight, smart contracts will be available from player to player, e.g. for art commissions.
As Stacey says, Cinder isn’t just a game. He doesn’t see Axie Infinity, Roblox or Decentraland as a competitor to his company, but rather Discord or a voice, video and text chat app. “I think we want to create a social space that goes beyond the barrage of chat threads and allows people to interact in more creative ways. And we can organize events there: from concerts and lectures to special interest groups for chatting and exchanging ideas.
“This will be a fun place to create social media, set up scenes and record things for your Tik Tok or Instagram, and even a place to showcase your collection of other NFTs in a gallery that you construct in Cinder” says Stacey. “But you know, I don’t want to give the impression that this MMO is an MMO that you are going to get into, you will choose to be a warrior or a thief, and you will build a character and leave on quests and things. Ultimately, we want to bring this to where it is the community that creates experiences for the community just like us. If I had to give you an elevator pitch in one sentence, I would say it’s Etsy meets Burning Man. “