The poker metaverse?
While the Bitcoin poker rooms topic has not been trending recently, the new developments in the Ethereum ecosystem (ETH), non-fungible tokens (NFT) in particular, are gradually being introduced to online poker. According to some experts, they are destined to make revolutionary changes in the industry.
Decentral Games online casino has announced a new "poker metaverse" game, ICE Poker, in October 2021. It is based on its own platform, which has been operating since December 2020.
Reference: The term "metaverse" was introduced by science fiction writer Neal Stephenson in his 1992 novel "Snow Crash." It is understood as a virtual world that allows you to design space, communicate, and manage its economy.
The analogy with a browser-based MMORPG is quite suitable for understanding what this platform is all about. But in the DG world, all gaming activity focuses on the casino. And of course, it could not do without trading various "loot," be it clothing or even individual land plots and buildings. MetaMask wallet is required to participate. You can play in ETH, USDT, DAI, ATRI.
What is ICE Poker?
With the addition of ICE Poker to the Decentral Games platform, its users will be able to play against each other. This process will be based on the non-fungible tokens already mentioned above:
- Iced NFT - will go on sale at the end of September for 0.1 ETH (≈$344) apiece. One token will be enough to access the new game, otherwise claimed to be free (no extra payments and fees). The more NFTs a player owns, the more chips he gets every day. In the game, tokens look like various elements of a player's clothes.
- Without owning Iced NFT, you cannot earn in-game currency - ICE token. It can be obtained directly at the poker tables by completing daily missions, participating in leaderboards, trading NFTs, and receiving passive income for temporary delegating ownership of tokens rights to other players.
- ICE can be "burned" for "minting" / updating the NFT. A separate trading platform will appear at the end of the year, where these tokens can be sold and bought for cryptocurrency.
In addition, at the end of each month, the most successful players will receive DG Coins (Decentral Games coins), which entitles them to the distribution of the generated commission (rake).
As a result, you should get a very peculiar version of social poker with a simulation of a live game, in which the entire ecosystem is based on the use of NFT, including the ability to convert your winnings into cash.
Who is Decentral Games?
Decentral Games hit the market in 2019. Its founder, Miles Anton, announced ambitious plans to transfer all popular gambling activities to the virtual world to compete with their live (offline) variants. And while these plans seem fantastic due to the technologies used is uncommon for most people, still over the past year, DG has been able to:
- Launch a casino in partnership with Atari. The opening event was attended by over 3,700 virtual players;
- Establish formal partnerships with many crypto investment firms and networks and attract $5,000,000 through them;
- Increase the value of their assets from 500K to 11M in just the last six months.
It's also worth considering that Decentral Games is a subsidiary of the Digital Currency Group (DCG) and brands like Grayscale (a digital asset manager of over $45 billion). As you can see, DG cannot be considered a John Doe, who came to the crypto industry out of nothing.
Consequences for online poker
Of course, it is too early to expect that shortly, such a poker metaverse will be able to compete with the online poker rooms we are used to. Decentral Games' developments have yet to pass the real mode tests of all game mechanics and possible network loads. Also, there's a long way to become popular on the mobile apps market.
But after all, just a couple of years ago, the use of cryptocurrency as a payment method in online poker was very exotic, and now it's heading to be a standard.
The situation with ICE Poker looks similar. Increasing problems with government regulation of online poker, the need to attract a new audience, etc., may force the owners of poker rooms and networks to look towards blockchain technologies for establishing transactions and innovative gameplay features. Drawing players' attention, who are already accustomed to the metaverses via computer games, could be very profitable in the long run.
How far this Decentral Games project can go, we'd most likely be able to see soon. Only those who are already trying to understand the use of NFT will be able to skim the cream in additional profit and an extra way to bypass the competitors. This applies not only to gambling operators but also to poker players.
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