Singapore-based SkyArk Studio thinks it has discovered blockchain games

Singapore-based SkyArk Studio thinks it has discovered blockchain games

Singapore-based SkyArk Studio thinks it has discovered blockchain games

SkyArk team members standing behind a large table.

Founder Chris Ng (centered) and members of his team. (Photo: SkyArk Studio)

The current decline in cryptocurrencies may cause some game developers to have cold feet about venturing into the industry, but a Singapore-based studio is moving forward.

SkyArk Studio is a Singapore-based blockchain gaming studio supported by cryptocurrency exchange Binance. It currently has over 36 people who are currently working on its next project, SkyArk Chronicles.

The game is based on the concept of play-to-earn games that allow players to earn money via non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and cryptocurrency.

By leveraging blockchain technology and a team of cryptographic experts, SkyArk believes it can incorporate blockchain technology alongside traditional game development to create the next digital ecosystem.

Rather than using the traditional play-to-earn model used by most crypto games, however, SkyArk’s business model revolves around aplay-and-earn strategy, allowing players to earn lucrative rewards when they play instead of just doing it to earn income.

Tables and chairs by the windows in an office space.

The humble office of SkyArk Studio. (Photo: Summer Chua for Yahoo Gaming SEA)

“Gaming companies are telling the public that if they play their games, they make money, which means they won’t have to work anymore,” said Chris Ng, founder of SkyArk Studio.

“They are telling the public that they can earn $ 100 every day by playing, which is simply impossible.”

One reason is that the current play-to-earn business model is not sustainable. Gaming companies that rely on this model are telling the public that they don’t have to work if they play their game, Ng added.

Despite this, there have been numerous concerns from crypto game critics that such games operate on a “pay-to-win” model whereby players are strongly encouraged to shell out cash to progress further in the game.

Video game developer Valve (publisher of Dota 2 and its multimillion-dollar tournament) has even banned the use of cryptocurrencies and NFTs on all games available on their digital store, Steam.

Not his first rodeo

Ng founded SkyArk Studio after deciding to venture into the world of crypto games following its rise to prominence in 2020.

He previously worked as a financial analyst before co-founding XII Braves, a local gaming company.

SkyArk ChronicleThe play-and-earn model is designed to reward players with collectibles in the form of NFTs, so each hero and character they collect is different and individually numbered.

This creates value in the acquired NFTs as each hero is different from the other.

The idea of ​​converting the in-game heroes and characters into NFT came after Ng and his team realized that the process of converting pre-existing art and assets from the game into NFT was relatively straightforward. They could use it as a substantial form of income, especially for artists.

An illustration of the knight holding a sword

SkyArt Chronicles images (Photo: SkyArk Studio)

A question of motivation

With over 2.5 billion people playing around the world in 2022, the number of blockchain games increased by 71% from last year to over 1,000.

These games have also attracted investments of over $ 2.5 billion, with the same global gaming market set to be worth over $ 340 billion by 2027, according to Mordor Intelligence.

However, with the recent cryptocurrency crash causing cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin to drop in value from $ 68,000 in 2021 to $ 24,500 as of August 15, the world of NFTs and cryptocurrencies remains highly volatile and unpredictable.

“I feel that what drives the crypto game craze is not the game design itself, but the extrinsic motivation to earn NFT that attracts players,” said Nash Lin, a professor of game design and development at Temasek Polytechnic.

“If the created NFTs have no real value in the virtual or physical world, I believe the craze will soon subside.”

While they may have become a breeding ground for exciting innovations, the future of crypto games is still uncertain.

It’s not as simple as turning everything and anything in the game into an NFT, SkyArk’s Ng said.

“You have to be innovative and create rewards that players feel motivated to work for. It’s also vital to understand your audience and reward dedicated gamers and collectors, rather than treating them as customers, ”said Ng.

This story is the work of student contributors who work with Yahoo in Southeast Asia.

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