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South Korea is the home of both enthusiastic gamers and NFT fans. NFTs collectibles have taken off along with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, as the NFTs use blockchain technology to uniquely identify digital objects so that you can verify authenticity and rarity. NFT assets grew from $40.9 million in 2018 to more than $338 million in 2020. This is according to Nonfungible.com, which tracks the market. And the market has further taken off in 2021 with Dapper Labs‘ NBA Top Shot, an NFT-based collectible platform that has surpassed $100 million in sales, five months after going public to a worldwide audience. Art and music NFTs have taken off as well.
GameTalkTalk has more than three million users, making it the country’s largest social gaming platform.
“It’s an honor to work with them to create NFTs that are sustainable for their business and the environment as well,” Simon Kertonegoro, the vice president of developer success at Enjin, said in an interview with GamesBeat. “The next phase of NFTs will be high-functioning NFTs that provide real utility, and provide people with an experience that they would not otherwise have.”
Enjin was founded in 2009, and it shifted to focus on NFTs in 2017, and it hopes to compete against Ethereum as the key platform for game-based tokens. One of its advantages is a more eco-friendly design, as Enjin has released a five-step plan to enable carbon-neutral NFTs by 2030.
“Both parties are really interested in how we can make NFTs that are sustainable and have high utility,” said Kertonegoro.
One of the problems of early blockchain cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum and Bitcoin is that they require lots of computing power to mine coins and verify authenticity, based on the “proof of work” design that required miners to solve complex computing puzzles. (The blockchain is a transparent and secure ledger that can be verified by pools of computers working together.)
But Enjin is moving to “proof-of-stake,” where the blockchain verification depends on a smaller number of trusted computing partners to verify data. That method of verification doesn’t use as much energy. The challenge is that not as many users are familiar with Enjin, in contrast to Bitcoin and Ethereum.
GameTalkTalk will use Enjin’s Efinity NFT platform and its JumpNet gas-free (or fee-less) scaling solution.
When JumpNet launches on April 6, GameTalkTalk will use the Proof of Authority (POA) solution, which uses the trust of respected authorities to verify blockchain data, to provide a seamless user experience with free and instant NFT transactions to its clients, which include prestigious brands such as Blizzard, Sega, and Nexon.
GameTalkTalk’s 200,000 monthly active users will be able to build a fun, engaging digital life for their in-app avatars by minting digital fashion and real estate NFTs, and personalize their avatars’ homes with tokenized pets and furniture.
South Korea is the world’s fourth-largest gaming market, with more than 29 million active gamers. Valued at $5.9 billion, the country’s market for games, consoles, and related content is expected to exceed $9 billion by 2026.
Enjin has hundreds of thousands of communities on its platform, with more than 20 million users on the original platform. The company switched to NFTs four years ago and built an ecosystem to enable developers to add blockchain to their games. About 40 game companies are using it so far, and Enjin has built bridges to other platforms such as Ethereum.
“We really want to connect the whole blockchain ecosystem as one instead of like a fragmented experience where users have to choose one one blockchain and can only transact on that one blockchain,” said Kertonegoro. “Enjin has built a whole ecosystem, which includes the minting platform, the integration platform, the wallet, the marketplace, and the blockchain.”
Competitors include Flow, which is another token platform. With GameTalkTalk, Enjin will be creating digital land and digital avatar NFTs.
“They want to use NFTs in a high-functioning, innovative way,” said Kertonegoro.
Beyond games, Enjin has also worked with Microsoft Azure for a couple of years to give rewards, dubbed Badger Badges, to Microsoft developers.
“Per capita, South Korea is one of the biggest gaming markets, and they are inherently technologists,” said Kertonegoro. “I think it is a very important market. We want NFTs that are really valuable in terms of rewarding experiences within the game ecosystem.”
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