The NFT goldrush has been undoubtedly marred by two elephants in the room: one being environmental impact and the other being gas fees for minting and trading NFTs. While the environmental issues appear to be at the center of long-term strategies by most blockchains, the gas fees were threatening to hamstring NFTs altogether. Unless the gas fees could be drastically reduced, the primary blockchain, Ethereum, was borderline untenable.
To give you an example of the absurdity, some friends of mine teamed up to create an NFT art collection using a (superb) artist and graphical designer, as well as an algorithm that randomly generated portraits based on traits. I wanted to buy some of the NFTs they’d created and I bought one as soon as it was made available. The issue was, the gas fee was more expensive than the NFT itself. In essence, I was paying more for shipping than I was for the parcel itself! This problem gets deeper when you look at platforms like Enjin, which is a gaming platform on the Ethereum blockchain. For them — and for us interested in blockchain gaming — the allure of NFTs is the ownership of in-game items. However, if those items cost a small fortune for companies and players to mint and then a further fortune to trade, it simply will not work. So, Enjin launched JumpNet.
JumpNet is “instant, secure, and gasless” for Enjin Coin and ERC-1155 tokens, which is said to have attracted the likes of Microsoft and Binance to use it. Microsoft recently used JumpNet to distribute 7,000 NFTs via “Beam” QR codes at the Global Azure 2021 event, according to Enjin’s press release. To put that in perspective, if that were to have happened on Ethereum’s mainnet, it would have cost anywhere between $175,000 and $600,000 in gas fees. In fact, since its launch only 2 weeks ago, JumpNet has seen 50 new projects and over 1.4 million assets minted.
This is obviously a boost for blockchain gaming, putting it more in line with platforms like WAX, and the anticipated blockchain MMO, Space Misfits (which we did a rundown of you can read by clicking here) has migrated across. You can now build blueprints in their in-game forge on JumpNet. There are still some teething issues, particularly for those of us with NFTs on Enjin that would currently have to pay gas fees to migrate them, but this won’t be the case forever. Every week we move slightly closer to blockchain gaming being just gaming.