NFTs and Why They Matter to You

 Hype, chatter, or truly the next coming thing in blockchain and gaming?  You decide…

 

A lot of people are speculating on what they will become, what importance they will have and how they might transform gaming eco-systems.  A lot more people don’t have the first clue as to what they are in the here and now.

 

However, there is nothing new under the sun, as the saying goes.  It might be new digital concepts and applications, but after all, it is human beings that will be driving the adoption of NFTs.  And this means pursuing what makes them happy and doing just that.

 

Art already has a growing medium of expression in the digital, NFT space

 

Art, for goodness sake, has always been subjective.  Whether your canvas is car design, portraiture, a sonnet, or a piece of digital art.  All start with a blank canvas, and it is the creative process that makes the end result what it is.  And that is how creators, or artists get their reputations.  And it was this way before Amazon, Trip Advisor and Google reviews came into being.

 

 To come back to …….. BUT hold these thoughts for the time being:

 

  • Got a funky (digital) football shirt that used to be owned by Ronaldo, and can prove it?  That is worth what someone wants to pay for it, in both the physical and the digital worlds….
  • Got a cool pair of the latest Nike sneakers? Whether digital or physical, they have a market value

 

The market stakes are huge.

Games are their own marketplaces, with inbuilt financial systems and a vast array of communities.  They are sophisticated human behaviour experiments, or live labs, at least in part…..and employ myriad techniques to keep players engaged and scaling their in-game time and assets which they can use in the games (shields, swords, guns, costumes – the list is pretty much endless).

 

Gamers are consumers of all things gaming in the physical and digital worlds.

Gamers can be sold to, and real estate games for example, businesses and buildings can be constructed and sold on, rented out, or moved around in, or catch fire…guess what?  Pretty much like in the physical world.  Gamers are action takers and embrace new tech innovations just as long as they deliver what they want and need effectively and fuss-free.

 

Picture an in-game house, a luxury cliff-top villa, or whatever you fancy. 

 

You enter into the marble hallway, there are sculptures on plinths, striking art on the walls, delicate chandeliers and more besides..maybe a dog with a designer collar?  All were digitally designed and made to come-to-life.  All are NFTs.  They were sold to the house owner.  Who might be looking to sell them on to someone else.  Well, the collar, not the dog……….on the other hand…

 

And the market is growing rapidly.

As Covid draws our permitted physical movement boundaries closer, so gamers spend more time in one place, but moving freely in their digital games world.  In other words they are playing more and more.  And yet more new gamers are showing up, too.  A stable proportion of the market really means growth, but NFTs are growing in number and value.

 

Blockchain as the future?

These guys are confident that they have a functional crystal ball when they talk about the importance of blockchain based games in future developments.  They are far from the only cheerleaders, and the amount of smoke around this issue surely tells of a blazing fire somewhere in the middle of the smoke.

 

So what?  DeFi, that is what.

The movement away from Fiat currencies towards decentralised and blockchain peer validated transactions is a potential disrupter with massive support.  Biased it may be, but crypto currencies are reported on in all the mainstream media, print,digital and visual.  Few people in the overall population have not heard of Bitcoin (BTC) for example.

Arguments swirl about the likelihood of BTC and other coins going establishment and being regulated as a consequence. 

 

 

Coming soon, to a venue near you.

And whilst use, investment and awareness  grows, one of the main use cases for blockchain tech is the sector called NFTs. And it is tipped to explode.

The point here is that of human behaviour, and our desire to have identity and significance.  Some of us choose to walk down the street wearing branded sports wear, or designer labels.  The genuine articles are worth more, assuming that their histories can be verified.  Some choose to wear similarly envy-inducing (well not everyone is envious, sniggering can never be ruled out) in the digital world of games. 

 

It is the emotions, stupid.

The human pay-off is the same.  A feel-good factor of individuality and importance.  And that is a heck of a drive to be reckoned with.  Blockchain based NFTs make that digital rarity and uniqueness certifiable.  Instantly.

 

The argument here is that how NFTs work is less important than what they represent, but since you are here…

Dry as dust but with heaps of trust, Wikipedia strips it of hype.  But it is an alternative to a natural sleeping remedy.

 

NFTs can be sold, but you can’t pay with them to fill your car up with fuel.  You have to convert them to FIAT first and then pay at the kiosk.  Which means accessing an NFT market place like this one.   And you will have to accept crypto as payment and then convert that to everyday bills.

 

Want to raise money against your digital goods portfolio?  There is a way to do that.

 

If anything has a notional value that someone is prepared to accept, such as an NFT, for example, then it can be loaned against.  Which shows the inventiveness within the ecosystem.

 

Confusingly, it can cost many times the market value of a low cost NFT to buy the thing…as the transaction going on the blockchain takes computing power and that costs.  And these costs are yo-yoing continuously. 

 

So, imperfect products located within imperfect eco systems as a subset of an imperfect world.  Vested interests wrestle potentially disruptive forces.  So what?  You ask.

 

And to some extent it does not matter.  The underlying drive will out.  Ask Primal Scream- they put it rather more simply.

 

There are probably many more contemporary music examples which prove the point, but as 10cc put it “Art for Art’s Sake (money for god’s sake)”  NFT art beautifully straddles the digital and physical worlds.  It is judged by buyers to have an intrinsic value and is already mainstream.  I mean, Christie’s?

 

Whether NFTS will be the vehicle of preference to represent digital goods of all sorts, in the future is anyone’s guess.  But something will.  Because it is a basic human drive to have and to own and to express individuality through having things.

 

As such, it is for NFTs to mess it up, they are the most workable outlet, and presently in pole position to prosper and grow.