Development & Education
5 mins

From Pixels to Blockchain

The gaming industry has significantly evolved from its origins in pixelated graphics and simple gameplay to become a multi-billion-dollar global phenomenon, characterized by a wide array of genres and platforms. Alongside this evolution in gaming, there's been a parallel transformation in the education of aspiring game developers, notably influenced by the emergence of Web3 technologies. Web3, marking the next phase in internet evolution, brings blockchain technology, Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), and decentralized applications to the forefront, significantly impacting the gaming sector. A prime example of this impact is Axie Infinity, a popular play-to-earn (P2E) game that leverages NFTs for player ownership of digital pets, allowing players to earn through gameplay. This model, showcasing a shift from traditional in-game item ownership to real asset ownership and the opportunity to earn, illustrates the significant changes Web3 is bringing to gaming. The shift towards Web3 also necessitates a reimagining of game development education. Traditional education focused on programming, game design theory, and mechanics for consoles and PCs, but Web3’s rise introduces new focuses like NFT creation, blockchain integration, decentralized gaming ecosystems, community-driven development, and the importance of security and ethical considerations. These changes aim to equip future developers with the skills needed for a gaming world increasingly centered around blockchain and decentralization. To align with these advancements, educational initiatives like the masterclass on "Monetisation in Web3" hosted by Acxyn at Asia Pacific University of Technology & Innovation (APU) are emerging. These programs are designed to prepare students for the Web3 gaming landscape, emphasizing blockchain, NFTs, and decentralized marketplaces. Through collaboration with industry leaders like Acxyn, institutions like APU are positioning their students at the forefront of the gaming industry's shift to Web3, ensuring they are well-equipped to explore the new opportunities it presents.

The gaming industry has come a long way from the days of pixelated graphics and simple gameplay. It has evolved into a multi-billion-dollar global phenomenon, with millions of players, diverse genres, and platforms that extend beyond our imaginations. However, it's not just the games that have evolved; how we educate aspiring game developers is also undergoing a transformative shift.

Web3's Impact on the Gaming Industry

Web3, the next stage of the internet evolution, is making significant waves in the gaming world. With the advent of blockchain technology, Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), and decentralized applications, gamers and game developers are experiencing a paradigm shift. This shift is driven by the decentralization of assets, ownership, and trust.

To underscore the impact of Web3 on the gaming industry, consider the case of Axie Infinity as one of the most popular play-to-earn (P2E) game. Axie Infinity is a digital pet game where players collect, breed, and battle Axies, which are NFT-based creatures. The game is powered by the Ethereum blockchain, which truly allows players to own their Axies and other in-game assets.

One of the key innovations that Axie Infinity brought to Web3 gaming was its focus on player ownership. In traditional Web2 games, players don't really own their in-game items. They can only use them within the game itself. But in Axie Infinity, players can own their Axies and other assets in the form of NFTs, which means they can trade them on marketplaces or even use them in other games.

Another innovation that Axie Infinity brought to Web3 gaming was its P2E model. In P2E games, players can earn cryptocurrency or other digital assets for playing the game. This can make Web3 games more appealing to players, as they can potentially earn money while playing their favorite games.

Axie Infinity's migration to Web3 and its focus on player ownership and P2E has been a huge success. In 2022, the game has generated over $4 billion in revenue.

This shift is driven by the decentralization of assets, ownership, and trust. But what does this mean for game development education?

Web2 vs. Web3: Gaming Education Reimagined

In the Web2 era, game development education primarily focused on teaching programming languages, game design theory, and the mechanics of building games for traditional platforms like consoles and PCs. However, the Web3 revolution is redefining the game development education landscape in several key ways:

  • NFTs and Digital Ownership: In Web3, NFTs enable players to truly own in-game assets. This shift towards digital ownership creates a new layer of complexity in game development. Game development education programs are now integrating lessons on NFT creation, blockchain technology, and the intricacies of decentralized marketplaces.
  • Blockchain Integration: Web3 brings blockchain technology into the heart of game development. Students are learning about smart contracts, consensus mechanisms, and how to build games that interact with blockchain networks. This knowledge equips them to create games that are not just fun to play but also embrace the advantages of blockchain technology.
  • Decentralized Gaming Ecosystems: Web3 gaming education acknowledges the shift towards decentralized gaming ecosystems. Developers are now taught to build games that seamlessly integrate into these ecosystems, allowing for cross-game asset interoperability, shared economies, and novel gameplay experiences.
  • Community-Driven Game Development: In Web3, community-driven development is on the rise. Game development programs emphasize the importance of community engagement, player feedback, and collaboration with token holders. This encourages students to think beyond traditional development models.
  • Security and Ethical Considerations: With the rise of blockchain and decentralized applications, there is a growing need for game developers to understand the security implications and ethical considerations of Web3 gaming. Students are learning how to protect user data, ensure fair gameplay, and avoid potential pitfalls in the decentralized landscape.

The Future of Game Development Education

As Web3 continues to transform the gaming industry, it's clear that game development education must adapt. The transition from Web2 to Web3 gaming education is driven by the need to prepare the next generation of developers for a world where blockchain and decentralized technologies are the norm, not the exception.

In an exciting development, Acxyn will host a masterclass at  Asia Pacific University of Technology & Innovation (APU) titled "Monetisation in Web3". At Acxyn, we aim to equip students with the essential knowledge to understand the monetization opportunities presented by Web3, a substantial upgrade from the existing Web2 framework. In this masterclass, students will explore the innovative concepts of blockchain, NFTs, and decentralized marketplaces, unlocking a world of potential for both game developers and players.

Acxyn's expertise in IP tokenization in gaming is at the forefront of this educational transformation. By collaborating with Acxyn, APU is ensuring that its students are not just keeping pace with industry trends but leading the way in the Web3 gaming landscape. This masterclass is a testament to the commitment of both APU and Acxyn in preparing the next generation of game developers to the limitless possibilities of Web3 gaming and become the innovative game developers of tomorrow.

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