Immutable Passport, a much-needed Web3 project by Immutable Labs, is the need of the hour for so many reasons. Many of us are already well aware of blockchain games opening ways for players to own in-game digital assets. These games are considered the catalyst to bring the major chunk of the population to Web3 technologies. Moreover, these games also offer plenty of ways to make money or earn cryptocurrency. However, there are certain challenges that halt the mainstream adoption of these games.
Some Play to earn games have massive entry barriers in the shape of NFTs. Players need to buy these NFTs to start playing just like in the popular Web3 game Axie Infinity. Axie Infinity requires players to buy 3 Axies which cost a lot more than any traditional AAA video game. The recent Axie hack of $625 million got everyone worried which also made plenty of gamers apprehensive of the niche.
Web3 Gaming is a Bit too Complex for Newbies
However, the entry cost barrier is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a bigger challenge hindering the onboarding of gamers, especially newbies. Setting up and beginning to play a Web3 game involves complexities and intricacies which deter gamers. Web3 and blockchain gaming can be daunting for newcomers due to the significant friction involved. Typically, players need to set up a crypto wallet and add funds in a specific cryptocurrency.
They can purchase non-fungible tokens (NFTs) just to play a Web3 game. Furthermore, this process may need to be repeated for every Web3 game, which can be off-putting. In fact, the moment players realize they need to remember and safeguard a 24-word seed phrase, the fun may vanish, resulting in disinterest or abandonment. The Immutable Labs must find ways to minimize the barriers to entry for gaming and streamline the onboarding process. This will provide a more engaging and enjoyable experience.
The Immutable Passport Offers a Solution
Sydney-based crypto unicorn, Immutable Labs, has announced its latest project, the Immutable Passport. This project seeks to tackle the adoption barriers faced by Web3. Founded by James Ferguson, Robbie Ferguson, and Alex Connolly in 2018, the project aims to provide seamless operations. The team behind the project has likened it to a single-sign-on (SSO) system. It is similar to Google, where users can use a single account to log in to multiple platforms with ease.
Immutable Labs' President and co-founder, Robbie Ferguson, stated in a press release that the Passport is a self-custodial wallet. Further, it allows users to sign in using their email and a one-time password. "Passport will be a game-changer for players and radically reduce user acquisition costs," he added.
Notably, the Immutable team has designed the Passport to be accessible not only to end-users but also to game developers. By doing so, they hope to create an interoperable blockchain gaming universe where projects can work together seamlessly from the early stages of development, eliminating the need to retrofit the Passport into the code.
While the ultimate goal of the Immutable Passport is to create a seamless, invisible, and multi-game product, the team has encountered some obstacles and learned valuable lessons along the way. Nonetheless, the Immutable Passport promises to be a significant step forward in overcoming challenges.
Why Web3 Gaming is Inevitable?
According to Alex Connolly, the co-founder and CFO of Immutable Labs, the company's roots date back to the early days of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) when the founders would trade character skins on black markets for games like CounterStrike and RuneScape. These digital wearables for in-game characters, often referred to as "cosmetics," gave the founders the idea that better games could be built in the Web3 space. They believed that if these games were tradable as NFTs, it would create a far superior experience than what they were used to in traditional gaming.
Connolly shared this backstory with CoinDesk, explaining that the founders saw the potential for deeper and more engaging games in the Web3 space. Their early experiences with NFTs fueled their desire to create better gaming experiences that leveraged the power of blockchain and decentralized finance. Today, Immutable Labs is working towards that vision, and their latest project, the Immutable Passport, is a significant step in that direction.
The Immutable Passport Faces Challenges
The Immutable Passport project faces challenges in achieving true interoperability due to resistance from major players in the blockchain gaming industry. Publishers like Activision Blizzard, Riot Games, and Epic Games are some of the names that are not eager to jump in on the idea. Their hesitancy in allowing their games to leave their platforms and work on others has reasons. The interoperability of their AAA IPs may not meet their graphics or gaming standards on any other platform. Additionally, there has been pushback from the gaming community itself. A survey in 2022 revealed that most gamers have negative sentiments toward cryptocurrencies and NFTs.
Despite some positive signs, such as Sony filing a patent to allow for gaming NFTs to be transferred between games, hardware, and even non-PlayStation consoles, Immutable Labs is not waiting for the gaming industry to change. Instead of targeting existing games, Immutable is focusing on fostering the next generation of game builders with a $500 million fund for game developers. The company believes that for mainstream Web3 gaming to truly thrive, there needs to be a breakthrough hit that captures the attention of players worldwide, and Immutable is actively working towards that goal.
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