South Korean online gaming giant Netmarble announced plans to launch several new games that use blockchain and metaverse technologies. The company announced that they are preparing to launch 20 new titles, of which about 70% will utilize blockchain technology. One of the new games, called A3: Still Alive, is a play-to-earn game that allows users to monetize intangible in-game assets, such as weapons, with cryptocurrency. A3: Still Alive will be Netmarble’s first play-to-earn game and is expected to be released in March. Another game called Everybody’s Marble: Metaworld will use metaverse and NFT technologies, allowing players to purchase land in a virtual world. Players can also build and trade “NFTized” real estate.
“The blockchain-based games made by Netmarble will integrate the enjoyment of games, along with intangible assets through NFT, and I believe that the gaming industry will grow even bigger than it is now,” said Bang Jun-hyuk, Founder and Chairman of Netmarble. “The metaverse will not only transplant various elements from the game but also converge with the blockchain technology to create a second real world beyond the virtual.”
Most of the new titles are aimed at gamers overseas, said Bang. Play-to-earn games are banned in Korea as regulators are concerned that they could fuel gambling addictions among the youth. “If an in-game system allows users to exchange items with paid goods, there may be a chance of speculation, where the game may fall into the ‘age 18+’ classification, and not available for the youth under 18,” the Korean Game Rating And Administration Committee said in a statement.
Apart from Netmarble, other Korean gaming companies also showed interest in blockchain and cryptocurrency. MIR4, a blockchain-based game developed by Wemade, had helped the Korea-listed company’s shares surge more than 400% in three months after it was available globally in August last year. The share price rise made its founder, Park Kwan-ho, a billionaire.
(All information was provided by Forbes)
Check out the industry-leading META Business podcast where we discuss the intersection of business and the metaverse