Blockchain Gaming Redefining The Gaming Industry

Blockchain gaming has taken the industry by storm with tech and cryptocurrencies. The gaming industry has always thrived and enjoyed massive growth. In the last few years, it has risen exponentially with the advancement in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Deep Learning, the Internet of Things (IoT), and Virtual Reality (VR). Despite the evolution and growth, the industry has decided to add more advanced technology – the blockchain!

Blockchain has revolutionized several industries, and the gaming industry is one of them. This breakthrough technology is changing the way games will be created and played. Apart from the progress, the pandemic has also enabled this technology to grow at an exponential level. It is, in fact, due to people resorting to gaming on the lockdown days. 

In this article, we will look at how blockchain gaming is redefining the gaming industry by making it more immersive and secure. We will also look at how this industry will be the first real use case of blockchain technology. 

Blockchain Gaming and the Role of NFT

So, what exactly is blockchain gaming? Technically, a blockchain is a transparent unalterable chain of data blocks on a network. On top of that, it is decentralized, hence there is no central control. Instead, the digital assets in the blockchain are controlled by users. These digital assets are also called Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) and are like Cryptocurrency coins. It is a fantastic invention for gamers who can freely move their virtual assets from one game to another. 

So NFT, like cryptocurrency, is not only transferable in the game, but also outside of the game. If we consider a scenario of RPG games such as Final Fantasy, the NFTs could be a sword, shield, costumes, or anything else.

Digital Scarcity of Assets

In RPG games, some of the legendary items are available in limited quantities for players. The players can only purchase it by paying a hefty amount, and only the premium players can keep those items. Similarly, in blockchain-powered games, some digital assets are scarce, and not easily available to every player. Thus, it follows the aspect of digital scarcity in a distributed ledger to maintain the decentralized marketplace. 

Ownership of In-Game Assets

An NFT owner, in blockchain games, always remains the owner even if the game stops working. It is because the asset can be transferred from one ledger to another, from one game to another, and can also be kept in the wallets. Blockchain-powered games utilize smart contracts to handle transactions. It transfers the assets into a players’ account. Thus, the ownership of the item cannot be replaced. 

Liquid Gold

The bottom line of blockchain gaming is liquidity. Liquidity is the capability of a digital asset or crypto coin to be converted into cash or any other coin. Since gamers are already accustomed to the concept of tokenization, liquidity allows them to implement a distributed ledger game very easily. Also, the assets can be traded with real-life currency as well. Since the items can be exchanged in-game as well as in the real world, it is best to keep the transactions on the blockchain to keep track. 

Security in the Gaming Market

With the power of decentralization in blockchain and encryption measures, hackers find it impossible to hack the crypto server. This gives an advantage to game developers to develop blockchain-based games that cannot be damaged by intruders. They need a secure and safe environment to develop, launch and monetize games in a secure market. 

Improved Payment Methods

Security and privacy are top features of distributed ledgers and cryptocurrencies. In the gaming industry, there have been numerous payment fraud incidents, security breaches, and multiple incidents. With blockchain-based games, crypto tokens can be used to make smooth payments, thus making the payment possibilities secure for gamers. 

Single Gaming Profiles

Most RPG games require users to register and create their profiles on games if they wish to play games and access gaming features. However, with crypto-based games, users can have one integrated RPG account that can be used to access and play multiple games. This single RPG profile will not only improve user experience but also make games more accessible. 

Bottom Line

The bottom line is that blockchain with its cryptocurrency offers a multitude of features to game players and game developers. This technology is revolutionizing the RPG industry despite its infancy and slow progress. With the rapid development, the crypto-based RPG business will help the gaming industry by making it more enjoyable and smooth, while keeping the hackers out of the domain.

UX Challenges In Blockchain

Ever wonder why users are reluctant to move towards blockchain despite it being the next big thing? What stops a person from adopting these applications? Why is the interaction with these applications not delightful? Will the potential of blockchain increase with the improvement in user experience? 

Fret no more! This article will provide in-depth guidance on the significant UX challenges in blockchain, and how UX designers can overcome them to enrich user experiences!

With the development of Metaverse, more and more businesses are shifting towards blockchain-based business models. Previously, cryptocurrency companies could afford to skip the extensive UX research processes as it was still a developing field – an unchartered territory. However, that is not the case anymore. Since cryptocurrency is rapidly replacing fiat currency and spreading all over the world, user experience in cryptocurrency applications has become a crucial factor. 

At this juncture, it is crucial to understand that user experience in DeFi applications is relatively tough. Hence, UX designers need to re-consider the design practices for blockchain-based applications. Therefore, a DeFi product should not only enrich the user experience with a delightful and frictionless design but also educate a novice user about blockchain. So, let’s look at major UX challenges. 

Consistency in Design

The number one UX rule is to maintain the same visual experience throughout the application. Since DeFi UX is still a UX design, it is crucial to maintain the mental model of the user as stated in Jakob’s law. Digital products are judged by their design and experience, hence, consistency in design is a major UX challenge in blockchain applications. Visual consistency and presentation of an app must be strictly maintained so that application users do not have to waste a lot of time figuring out what each icon might mean. It is especially true for blockchain products. 

UX designers must ensure that users have a comfortable experience while interacting with the product. What happens if we suddenly change the functionality of the Spacebar and Backspace key? The user’s frustration would reach its peak as they are forced to learn a new mental model. Therefore UX designers should keep the design consistency as well behavioral consistency in the blockchain-based applications to match the non-blockchain existing products. 

Trust, Transparency, and Credibility

Designing for trust is the prime factor in blockchain UX. It is also a big UX challenge for blockchain experience designers. Since blockchain use cases exist in almost all scenarios including healthcare and e-commerce, the application requires a certain level of trust from the users. As a novel technology with a huge learning curve for users, designers and developers need to be more vigilant in building the trust process when onboarding the users on their applications.

Similarly, blockchain applications should have clear and consistent transparency. Users need to know what their application can do for them, and that there is no hidden information or loopholes. Mapping their journey transparently from the initiation till the validation of transaction, for instance, is critical for building trust. With blockchain applications, monetary aspects like transaction fees, date, time, and status should be transparent in the context of their action.

Hence, UX designers should ensure transparent feedback to establish the credibility of a blockchain application. In addition, the information should be discoverable for the retention and building of trust. No opaque intentions!

Technical Jargons

“Mining”, “yielding”, “farming” and “seed phrase” are some of the jargon that is difficult to describe to novice users. As crypto application users, we want to be sure about every state of the transaction, and not the underlying technology. It is like going to the bank to withdraw money, but not being interested in its operations and management. Also, this learning curve raises a wall between users and their experiences and decreases the usability of the system. 

It is crucial to design experiences with proper documentation and FAQs. Hence, the solution is to choose carefully crafted words to build a rapport between novice users and veterans empathetically. Also, this could be more effective if the terms are standardized in the crypto industry to help users have a consistent experience across different cryptocurrency applications. After all, the aim is to empower users to use crypto products without having to memorize their dictionaries first. 

Cumbersome Transaction and Cost

Transaction speed and cost – albeit being a technology issue – are equally cumbersome for UX designers. This challenge is the most frustrating to design and equality frustrating for users. Most blockchain networks have 2-6 second transaction processing time, and this is very boring for the average user as they are used to 0.4 second computer response time. In addition, depending on the network, transactions can exceed up to a few minutes, and honestly, nobody likes waiting for approx 5 minutes just to pay for their coffee. 

Similarly, transaction fees concerning each network could vary. And this issue should be communicated clearly to the user before the transaction is executed. Therefore, the possible solution for UX designers is to communicate transaction states and costs as clearly as possible to the user. Faster and scalable blockchain products would also help with this issue. 

So what is the take-away? Blockchain is an emerging technology and it is on everybody’s radar, as UX designers, we play an important role in building experiences for the users and bringing its value upfront. It all comes to designing for the user, and not the technology. In conclusion, consideration, consistency, credibility, and clarity in user experience design will help in tackling the UX challenges in the blockchain.