Crypto gaming investment surges in July as Metaverse NFTs expire


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The crypto gaming industry, which spans video games that use blockchain-based tokens, or NFTs, collectively received a substantial $297 million in investment funding last month, according to a joint report by DappRadar and the Blockchain Game Alliance. .

About 63% of that July funding was committed to infrastructure development – ​​a detail that suggests the industry is still in its early stages. Investors are betting on tools and platforms that will facilitate crypto and NFT-powered games in the future.

Compared to June, which saw a comparatively modest $68 million in crypto gaming investment, July was an explosive month for the industry.

The report speculates that the low numbers in June may be partly due to the broader crypto industry being targeted by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) targeting both Binance and Coinbase in June, creating uncertainty in the industry. .

However, Carlos Pereira, partner at Bitcraft Ventures, does not believe much can be drawn from the reported June decline and July surge.

“I don’t think there is any particular reason why one month looks so different from another,” Pereira told Decrypt in a message.

“This is a concentrated dataset that deals with high variance given the sample size. Imagine that any of those deals, worth more than $30 million in checks, took several weeks to complete, Pereira said, and it could have easily happened in a month or so. “From our side, it certainly didn’t feel like anything was different.”

Crypto gaming investment decreased in June but increased again in July. Image: DappRadar/Blockchain Game Alliance

What further reinforces that the decline in investment in June may be an anomaly is the fact that the sector saw investments of more than $400 million in each of the previous three months, from March to May 2023.

Alok Vasudev, co-founder of VC firm Standard Crypto, said, “It can be very difficult to gain insights from month-to-month analysis, especially when many financings are not announced, or may see announcement delays. ” Decrypt via email.

Vasudev continued, “Gaming is particularly difficult because games take a long time to develop – anything that comes to market was probably funded some time ago.” “But to our way of thinking, we believe gaming is just one major use for crypto, and we would expect to see increased investment in this area in the future.”

July saw a number of notable investments, with game publisher Animoca Brands investing $30 million in crypto “super apps”, artificial intelligence startup Inworld AI investing $50 million to empower smarter, more dynamic in-game characters. Raise more

Valhalla Ventures also set up a $66 million venture capital fund for gaming and technology, while Futureverse raised $54 million for its crypto metaverse plans.

While some metaverse-focused companies are still raising funds, both NFT prices and overall trading volume for existing metaverse games continued to decline over the past month.

In July, virtual world games had a one-year low of $5.6 million in monthly trading volume with 10,796 sales, with an average sale price of $523 per NFT, DappRadar reported. It’s a far cry from the heyday of the 2021 Metaverse hype, when a plot of virtual land next to Snoop Dogg in The Sandbox once sold for $450,000.

Yuga Labs dominated the Metaverse NFT economy again in July, with OtherDid and OtherDid Extended NFT sales accounting for 72.5% of the traded volume in the virtual world category. Bored Ape Yacht Club creator’s Otherside Metaverse game, which will use those NFT land plots, remains in development.

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