2.1 The Evolution of Smartphone Games

We want to create a platform for P2E games using blockchain technology. To this end, it is necessary to examine how the mobile game market has developed over the past 20 years. In this chapter, we will examine the smartphone game market—which has evolved from paid games to free games, and then to games that pay you money—predict what form it will develop into in the future, and find out what our Weracle platform should prepare for.

Paid Games (Pay-to-Play Games)

Most of the early smartphone games were paid games. Paid games are the games that you can download and play after paying a set amount of money. Early smartphone games such as Angry Bird, Fruit Ninja, and Zombies and Plants were mainly paid games that could be downloaded and played after paying $1 or $3.

Free Games

A new type of game called Free-to-Play (F2P) has appeared in the smartphone game market, which used to have mainly paid games. F2P games can be downloaded and played for free. Of course, not everything about F2P games is free. F2P games generate revenue by selling payable items to users who want to become stronger or experience more content faster than others. In F2P games, only about 5% of users become billing users who purchase payable items, and the remaining 95% of users enjoy the game for free. However, despite the fact that only 5% of users pay, most mobile games today are released in the form of F2P because the profits of F2P games are significantly higher than those of paid games.

Why has the mobile game market shifted from paid games to F2P games?

The only difference between F2P games and paid games is that you can play F2P games for free without paying. But this one difference creates a huge difference in terms of the number of users. The number of downloads of F2P games is at least 10 times that of paid games, and at most hundreds to thousands of times higher. As F2P games became the mainstream of mobile games, the initial barriers to entry into games have been lowered, and with the rapid spread of smartphones, the mobile game market has grown very rapidly.

Let's dig a little deeper into the term Free2Play (F2P). We always pay to enjoy entertainment. To enter the cinema, you need to buy a movie ticket; to enter an amusement park, you also need to buy a ticket; and to play golf, you have to pay for the golf course. It's hard to find anything that doesn't have a cost, except for F2P games. Can F2P be introduced in movies? Can F2P be introduced in amusement parks, golf, bowling, or billiards? In order to do F2P, a lot of high-quality content has to be ready in advance, and it is only possible with strong confidence in that content. The mobile game industry has been releasing F2P-style games for 10 years at the time of writing, and based on this concept, the mobile game market could grow very rapidly. Now, the game market is developing into a new form beyond F2P with the advent of blockchain technology.

Play-to-Earn Games

With the development of blockchain technology and the advent of NFTs, a new type of game called Play-to-Earn (P2E) has emerged. P2E games are games that pay you money while you are playing them. Without the use of blockchain technology, it is very difficult to create a system where users who participate in the game can earn money. In particular, if the participating users

are evenly distributed in 160 countries around the world, it is not easy to receive an invoice and use the SWIFT system to send money to the users. However, through blockchain technology, we have a new monetary system that allows all users around the world to easily buy and sell digital assets, and with the advent of NFT, transactions became possible by giving value to all digital assets. By creating a way for users to earn money through blockchain technology, users who enjoy games can now participate as investors and producers in the game ecosystem, not just as content consumers.

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