Current State of Web3
The Journey to a Better Web3 Isn't Easy
For those in web3 from the beginning (we’re still early on!) it may seem like a long and arduous journey filled with volatility and unknowns — reminiscent of the ‘Wild Wild West’ of old America – but when you zoom out, the advances web3 is going through with technology is not dissimilar to technological evolutions in all industries, even previous ones within gaming.
During the roughly 70 year history of video games, technological advancements were always the key driver in pushing evolutions forward. Whether it was gaming’s initial mainstream adoption in the 60s and 70s, the advent of the computer, the internet evolution to web2, or the rise of mobile and advances in computer power, new genres and standards then caused transition periods. Each time was followed by exponential growth.
In fact, the same goes for all major new technologies.
The commonly used product adoption chart above shows how adoption of new technologies such as the internet, the smartphone, or even bluetooth headphones typically takes place in phases with people categorized in multiple ways related to that technology. Innovators and early adopters are the first ones to use new technologies or breakthrough products. These categories of people are visionaries and pioneers. The Chasm is the inflection point where this new technology starts to hit mainstream - the majority. There is no set amount of time it takes for a new technology to pass through the Chasm but when it does, there will be a snowball effect.
When translating the state of Web3 gaming into a traditional product adoption chart, Web3, blockchain gaming, is nearing what is known as the Chasm.
The Skeptics or Laggards, as shown above, are the most conservative, the last to join, and are usually the ones doubting its viability in the first place (right up to their own initial usage). These people are known as the fudders of web3.
Anyone reading this now would be considered in the first two pillars, Innovators and Early Adopters, or web3 pioneers. People that had the foresight, the resilience, and passion to dig in their heels and take the journey. As with early investors and pioneers of all disruptive technologies, they went through the most difficulty and are also most rewarded for their resilience and perseverance. According to studies done during 2022, 1 in 5 adults in America alone have traded in cryptocurrency, with nearly 50% of Americans ages 18-34 having done so. The numbers around the world, especially in developing countries are much higher.
The adoption of cryptocurrencies and Web3 is growing exponentially and reaching the Early Majority pillar, where numbers start to overtake that of Web2, isn't that far off. This is a critical point for Web3 gaming as it means it will then push through the Chasm, the current state of web3 gaming, the tipping point. The point at which web3 gaming has overtaken web2 in terms of adoption. However, this is not a guaranteed result as it requires certain aspects to evolve. Although the current bear market has caused a lot of heart ache, disappointment, and disruption it also speeds up the evolution to higher quality and more sustainable web3 gaming and web3 institutions.
Web3 Play-TO-Earn Gaming:
Web2's evolution to Web3 opened doors of limitless potential for the gaming world as it redistributed ownership, empowered gamers to play to own their destiny within the game, and allowed for robust ecosystems to be created. However, in GameFi 1.0, just like in all raging new industries, the enthusiasm to catch the wave led to the quick release of lower production value games that focused more on the earning aspect and less on the entertainment value that games are meant to deliver. This gave birth to a stream of play-to-win and play-to-earn web3 gaming experiences which lack core gaming values, sustainable growth and economies. Simply put, the current play-to-earn gaming model is not sustainable-- an untamed rewards system coupled with low production and entertainment value. For web3 gaming to succeed and go mainstream it needs to build on top of the best of web2 gaming and not wander down a separate rebellious niche path.