Play-to-Earn (P2E) is really just getting started, so any market is an untapped market for this new type of game, but mobile, in particular, will be the fuel for the play-to-earn fire. According to a recent article from NewZoo, the mobile gaming industry accounts for more than 50% of all gaming revenue. That means mobile takes in more every year than both PC and console combined.
Think about that for a second; that idea needs a moment to really be appreciated. Not only does it dominate the market share, but it is growing yearly, while the others are shrinking. Clearly, there is something to mobile gaming here.
Play-to-earn will be no different, in fact, I think play-to-earn has a chance of being even more skewed towards mobile than anything PC or console. It just makes practical sense. The gaming industry is discovering that reaching people means reaching people through their phones wherever they are.
With huge AAA releases like League of Legends: Wildrift, PUBG Mobile, and Genshin Impact, we have proven that gaming companies are capable of making stellar games playable on mobile. You will notice that those three encompass MOBAs (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena), FPSs (First-Person Shooters), and RPGs (Role Playing Games). So, many different genres have had success in the mobile realm as well.
What once surely was considered impossible has now been done. People play and spend on mobile games with some making more than one billion a year (PUBG made two billion in 2021). The transition to play-to-earn will only be natural. There is a huge market, there is a desire to earn while playing games, and there are many developers who are focused on this market.
We also already have many mobile wallets that are allowing people to do the entirety of their crypto investing/transactions through their phone. Different blockchain apps are also set up to handle game assets as well, so the infrastructure for mobile blockchain gaming has already been done. Really, the mobile blockchain landscape is wide open. We need a variety of well-made games that are fun, complex, and have the tokenomics to support them to bring mobile blockchain gaming to the forefront. There is room for so much in this space, so it is encouraging to see some new contenders coming later this year.
What I find interesting is that it seems as if mobile isn’t being leaned into quite as much as it should be yet in blockchain gaming. The developers who are first pioneering blockchain gaming seem to be focusing first on PC/browser. Fewer than 40% of the games registered on playtoearn.net are mobile-friendly. While of course, many browser games are available to mobile audiences, we really need a larger push towards in-app games. There are very few currently released which can be downloaded as an app, and the ones that are released already aren’t the ones that will be able to carry the blockchain flag forward.
So far I’d say Thetan Arena is the best full-fledged mobile crypto game out there, which I’ve already written about here. But as I’ve stated in the article, I don’t think its tokenomics are good enough to appeal to the masses.
We just need the games!