Since the release of CryptoKitties back in late 2017, the idea of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has excited many in the crypto space. And although the crypto and blockchain space has been through a lull since, the development of NFT tokens is flourishing.
Blockchain and decentralized networks offer endless possibilities, but NFTs could just turn out to be blockchain’s killer dApp.
What Are Non-Fungible Tokens?
Blockchain allows us to create cryptocurrencies. Each individual cryptocurrency on each blockchain is able to be traded and exchanged like money. These cryptocurrencies, like BTC, ETH, and LTC are what is known as fungible tokens because of their exchangeable similarities to money.
But for things like assets in a game, such as a CryptoKitty, it has to be unique. We wouldn’t want a copycat of our very rare and expensive CryptoKitty, now would we?
To be sure of this uniqueness, we need the concept of non-fungible tokens. NFTs can be created in a game, or created by the developers and bought on a marketplace, and the owner knows with confidence that there are the said amount of each token he/she bought.
They can be absolutely unique, such as your CryptoKitty, or some prime land that you may have bought in Decentraland or League of Kingdoms. Games like Gods Unchained allows you to use your unique collectible cards in game, and with each victory your card grows ‘stronger’ or weaker if you’re not so good, and you also have the chance of winning new cards.
Why Are NFTs So Popular?
Non-Fungible Tokens gained their popularity back in 2017. This is when CryptoKitties exploded onto the market and almost brought the Ethereum blockchain to a halt. The NFTs that represent each CryptoKitty is unique, and each owner can breed with another owner’s Kitty and beget more.
The offspring will have DNA from the mother and father but will be unique, and it’s this cryptographic metadata sharing that really got the game developers excited.
In Gods Unchained, a game in which you play to defeat the opponent, you can not only use your Gods Unchained collectibles. But also take your CryptoKitty into it and use it as an enforcer.
Doing so, your CryptoKitty will transform into a talisman and help you in your challenge. Afterward, you can morph it back into a CryptoKitty if you so wish, and it may have gained strength and be worth more.
And it’s this that has really excited the gaming world. Being able to take something from game to game, and knowing that you have true ownership of that token, and using it to empower itself.
NFTs Are Not Just For Gaming
NFTs have uses outside of gaming, too. Music ownership is being decentralized thanks to the uniqueness of NFTs.
For example, a musician no longer has to sign up with big producers who, for eternity have taken most of the earnings. But now musicians need not be at the whims of the big companies anymore.
Instead, a musician can have total control of their music, and they can even limit the number of sales if they decide tokenize it. Furthermore, there are others actually decentralizing the internet.
For example, if the musicians have something they believe will be a good seller, they can either create as many as they like, and make sure everyone who wants one, gets a copy. Or, they can limit it to however many, and know that as the tokens (records) run out, the price of each one will go up because of its scarcity.
What’s more, they know that there can’t be any copies of the NFT (album) because it will never actually leave the security of the blockchain.
CryptoKitties might on the face of it look like a simple game. However, the idea of DNA sharing to create new uniqueness opened up so many possibilities for blockchain.
Platforms like Ethereum, and now Bitcoin thanks to the Lightning Network, will facilitate the expansion of NFTs. This is not just in gaming but in all walks of life.
We see it now, many who were in crypto back in 2017 tried their hand at cat breeding. But now with second worlds opening up in Decentraland, and morphing tokens from game to game, it’s just the beginning for NFTs.
Gaming, music, and even the art world are going to be revolutionized, and NFTs will be the bedrock of it all.