Play to Die: A new crypto gaming model brings the concept of death to the Metaverse

Play-to-Die: What if death in crypto games could become permanent, just like it is in real life? This would “open up all new kinds of experiences and games.” At least that’s what crypto researcher and investor Dave Stanton claims.

Dave Stanton has come up with what sounds like a crazy idea: the play-to-die concept. Indeed, he wants to build a system that would allow a beloved character who dies in a game to disappear forever. The token is created as a non-fungible token (NFT) that can be bought or sold on the open market.

So once the character dies, the NFT burns.

“[Je] thinks the value potential of the characters in NFT is much larger than that of traditional game characters,” Stanton wrote in a blog. “So introducing a concept of losing by dying within the game is much more interesting and engaging than before.”

Play-to-Die: Dead, But Still Alive as NFT

Death is not a new concept in gaming; thus, play-to-die can be an easy transition. For example, characters in first-person shooters, or FPSs, as well as those in role-playing games (RPGs) already “die” in the game. Players have a number of lives, which can be either limited or infinite.

However, the actual idea of ​​death within games is nothing more than a “feedback mechanism that you misplayed at some point in the game”. In real life, when you die, it’s “game over forever”. When you die in play-to-die mode, you die

Dave Stanton thinks the real death experience can be applied to crypto gaming. He hopes this will “unlock new gaming experiences, new revenue opportunities for players and potentially create some of the most engaging spectator experiences”.


His idea revolves around non-fungible tokens, or NFT, which are immutable and unique units of data stored on the blockchain. NFTs can be used to represent things like photos, videos, audio files, and other types of digital files. And now they will also be used for dead characters in the gaming metaverses.

“NFTs can be bought, sold, traded, or used in other contexts outside of a single game,” he clarified. “These are significant points…compared to previous gaming experiences. Instead of only being able to use the character in this game, a player can now buy and sell on the open market.”

Dave Stanton also talked about the rise of NFTs that can be split and traded in different blocks. “It means the characters will have a lot more value (it’s not just monetary value, but emotional value to the player) because they’re not tied to a single game,” he said. he explains.

“This interoperability can manifest itself in many possible ways. The ability to use a character in multiple games is an obvious example. I think there could also be promotional partnerships, membership opportunities and much more that we’re not able to imagine right now,” Stanton added.

How does play-to-die work?

Immutable signs have opened up new possibilities for the preservation and circulation of art. In particular, they aroused sympathy of celebrities like Snoop Dogg, Paris Hilton and Madonna.

Considered by some to be the Wild West of the blockchain industry, non-fungible tokens have also begun to attract criminals, with carpet scams common. Users have also lost thousands of NFTs worth millions of dollars in hacking attacks. phishing.

In his proposal, Dave Stanton theorizes how permadeath could work in crypto games. So he imagines a first-person shooter or other fighting or battle game, and in which the player character is an NFT.

As you win battles, you collect skills. However, if you lose a battle, your character dies and it burns NFT. What does this mean then?

“If the game was wildly popular, any player could start over and, to their credit, build a very capable character,” Stanton explained.

“In theory, extremely competent characters would be rare as many would die constantly in the game. They could then play with that character or sell it to someone who is looking for a competent fighter but isn’t willing to spend the time to achieve it.”

Dave Stanton argued that this could create “profit opportunities for good players with little or no capital. Rarity is not random (like with current NFT strikes) but based on skill, effort and survival.

“I think there’s also a possibility that skins or items in the game can only be unlocked by reaching certain levels or surviving a certain number of battles. This would create additional value for these characters beyond just in-game abilities,” he added.

die playing

After dying in a game, players lose their character. According to Mr. Stanton, players “can engage and connect even more with their characters by thinking more about their actions. This can lead to much more engaged players.”

Stanton’s plan implies that there is an opportunity for “viewers to connect more with highly skilled and enduring characters.”

He explained thus:

“Broadcast battles/battles can attract more viewers in-game and, more importantly, out-of-game. Just like the biggest sporting events in the world (such as the Super Bowl, the World Cup, the Olympics, etc.) are followed by fans of the sport in question, but also by many “non-sportsmen”. [Ce qui s’explique par l’ampleur de l’intérêt suscité par ces événements et leur impact sur la culture populaire. Comme les personnages vont “mourir” au sein du jeu s’ils perdent, cela suscite beaucoup plus d’émotion chez les spectateurs et pourrait être plus intéressant que les jeux actuels.”

Une proposition risquée

Cela dit, tout le monde n’est pas aussi emballé par l’idée de Save Stanton. Long Do, directeur de jeu chez Anomura, une plateforme de jeu play-to-earn de pixel art NFT, a déclaré à BeInCrypto que le concept de mort permanente dans les jeux crypto était faible.

“La faiblesse du modèle réside dans le fait que la plupart des investisseurs veulent des modèles qui présentent peu de risques et un énorme avantage”, a déclaré Long Do.

“Par exemple, des projets où il n’y a aucun coût de frappe pour les investisseurs, mais un énorme bénéfice si les ventes secondaires deviennent virales et que le prix plancher leur permet de tirer un profit. Ce type de modèle va à l’encontre de la pensée actuelle. Du point de vue de la gamification, il pourrait être intéressant pour ceux qui ont une plus grande tolérance au risque. Il existe un public pour cela, mais cela pourrait ne pas être très bien perçu par les investisseurs traditionnels du Web3.”

Dave Stanton a reconnu l’échec des expériences passées de mort permanente dans le monde du jeu.

Cependant, “si [ce modèle] is embraced in crypto gaming, we will see many new merit-based economic opportunities emerge for players with low barriers to entry.” In addition, there is a “potential [pour une] revolution in watching games because they will feel more real and visceral to non-gaming viewers. Like sports fans watching a game knowing that the athletes are committing their bodies and, in some cases, as in motor sports and combat sports, their lives.”

The rise of Web 3 driving crypto gaming

According to DappRadar, the blockchain gaming industry continued to experience significant growth during the third quarter of 2022.

Month-on-month, the number of unique active wallets in the industry increased by 8% to 912,000, ensuring that its Web3 share remained at over 48% in the third quarter. Gameta was the most used app in September, with over 1.33 million unique wallets.

According to the report, gaming projects like “Move to win” are gaining particular popularity. Thus, “Sweat Economy” has made it possible to beat the record of 10,000 NFT in Near Protocol. Blanks Block Party and Star Atlas, nft games online, became the first Web3 titles to be released on the Epic Games Store.

Gods Unchained entered the top five NFT collections by trade volume, recording over $18 million in sales in September. Investments in blockchain-based games and metaverse projects, however, fell in the third quarter ($1.3 billion) compared to the second quarter, falling 48%.

However, this is almost double the total amount of funds raised in the entire year of 2021. In its third quarter report, DappRadar indeed stated, “The future of blockchain gaming is bright and is on its way to ‘became the main figure of Web3.”


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