Metaverses: a review of interesting projects
By Hennadii Cholovenko 2908 7 Nov 2022
Metaverses are a separate direction of the crypto industry that has captured the attention of not only millions of people, but also famous and largest companies in the world. We have collected the most interesting projects for you.
Over the past few years, the topic of metaverse has attracted the attention of not only users - fans of the game genre and VR technologies, but also the largest global companies. They decided to start selling their virtual goods through the metaverse, or at least promote themselves on the new hype to remind of their own brands' commitment to innovation.
Sony, the PlayStation 5 manufacturer, has decided to invest $2 billion with LEGO in the Epic Game metaverse called Fortnite. Adidas purchased a plot of land as an NFT in The Sandbox metaverse. Nike and Gucci have decided to join the Nikeland metaverse, which is being created by Roblox. Samsung, Coca-Cola, Dolce&Gabbana, and even NASA and Playboy decided to try out a new virtual format in the Decentraland metaverse. The clothing manufacturer Zara releases limited collections of its products, such as Lime Glam, in the Zepeto metaverse, which has about 300 million users. Another clothing chain under the famous brand H&M offers its customers virtual shopping in the CEEK City metaverse. Things and clothes purchased in digital format will also be delivered in physical form after the buyer returns to the real world from the virtual one. And there are many such examples.
What is the metaverse
It is believed that the metaverse is the next level social network, in which virtual goods in the form of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) will play a major role. The gameplay in many projects plans a smooth transition from the browser-based 2D version to 3D at the next stage. Then communication can take place with the help of VR devices - glasses or helmets, which will transport the user to the three-dimensional virtual world of the metaverse. Thus, any user will be able to move to a certain virtual location or a real city reproduced in the digital world. He will be able to travel through its streets, communicate with other players, interact with virtual objects, engage in virtual shopping. Or visit a digital representation or showroom of a well-known brand that has already opened it in the metaverse.
It was these prospects that prompted well-known companies to plunge into this amazing industry, which can become a new sales channel, particularly for a young audience. Which is why Sony, Samsung, Adidas, Nike, Gucci, Zara, H&M, Coca Cola and many other famous companies are already present there.
Let's look at the most interesting concepts of metaverses that have already become popular.
Decentraland is a metaverse in GameFi format on the Ethereum blockchain with its own decentralized virtual economy. Users can create unique game content in NFT format, which will be sold for MANA tokens, the currency of the Decentraland project. It is also used to buy in-game items and avatars in the marketplace, as well as various services in the metaverse. Land plots (LAND tokens), which give the right to control purchased objects, play an important role in the game ecosystem.
The interesting thing is that players can attend concerts with live music, exhibitions, trainings and seminars, go to casinos or shops with other players, start a virtual business, test vehicles, spend time at any resort, etc. All this and much more becomes possible only in the 360-degree virtual world of Decentraland.
The metaverse is governed by a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO). Any holder of MANA and LAND tokens can make proposals and initiate voting on changes to Decentraland. Voting takes place using smart contracts, where each participant votes according to the principle: 1 synthetic token = 1 vote.
Tokenomics of the project is based on ERC-20 MANA token and ERC-721 LAND tokens. The latter, thanks to the NFT format, have unique individual characteristics. They are used when creating game objects: avatars, clothes, real estate, and land plots. All 90,000 plots were auctioned when the project was just starting. One of them was bought by Samsung, where it opened its virtual store called The House of Sam.
Currently, plots of land can be bought for MANA on the Decentraland secondary market, just like other game objects, but at much higher prices. The project fights inflation thanks to the burning of MANA tokens - this is what makes it possible to keep the demand at a high level for a consecutive year in a row. The asset price is also supported by limited issue.
The responsibility for the characteristics of all types of assets existing in Decentraland is assigned to smart contracts MANAtoken, LANDregistry and EstateRegistry. Interestingly, the MANAtoken contract can never be changed because the developers destroyed its private key.
The Sandbox is another P2E (Play2Earn) metaverse on the Ethereum blockchain with elements of decentralized finance (DeFi) and NFT. Here, users can create their own game projects and digital assets in NFT format using the tools provided by the platform. Generated assets can be traded for SAND tokens on the internal marketplace or exchanged with other players.
The Sandbox shows familiar features from such game projects as Minecraft and Roblox, which the developers seem to have taken inspiration from.
There are three types of tokens used in the metaverse. SAND is an ERC-20 token that acts as an internal currency. LAND is an ERC-721 NFT token that can be bought, sold, or even leased as land. There are a total of 166,464 such plots in the metaverse, and currently more than half already have owners. ASSETS are also NFT tokens, but of the ERC-1155 standard. They are used to create all author's items or unique objects. Their creators get ownership rights and can trade them on The Sandbox marketplace.
The Sandbox ecosystem consists of VoxEdit, Marketplace and Game Maker.
VoxEdit is a free package for creating any 3D objects. You can create almost anything that your imagination allows: real estate, animals, plants, vehicles, landscape design objects, any tools or even human characters. All created objects consist of blocks named "voxels". These are 3D pixels that resemble blocks from the LEGO game. With the help of the VoxEdit tool, you can change their shape, size and combine them into any shapes. The created objects can be exported and sold on the marketplace.
Marketplace is a domestic marketplace for trading assets (ASSETS) in the form of NFT tokens.
Game Maker is another software tool that allows you to create and test your own game projects in the Sandbox metaverse. With it, assets and objects can be added to LAND to create new game mechanics.
Management and changes to The Sandbox metaverse, as well as the formation of the future roadmap, goes through the DAO. Owners of SAND tokens can influence the further development of the project through the voting system.
As you can see, the world of metaverse forms a new trend and serves as a platform for the development of virtual spaces, where in 10-15 years we will all be able to feel as comfortable as in the real, physical world.