2.2 Changes in producers and consumers in the gaming industry

An ecosystem consists of producers and consumers. If new producers appear in the existing ecosystem and create new consumers, the ecosystem can become healthier. The first automobile ecosystem was a simple structure where automobiles were produced in a factory and purchased by people, but as services such as repairs, rentals, insurance, second-hand trading, racing tournaments, and gas stations were added to it, it developed into the huge automobile ecosystem we have today. As such, the game ecosystem initially started small as a developer-production and user-consumption market, but as related businesses appeared, it gradually grew bigger. In this chapter, we will examine how the game industry can develop with the advent of P2E by considering how the game industry ecosystem started and developed.

Early Gaming-Industry Ecosystem

The early gaming-industry market consisted of a very simple ecosystem in which game developers were producers of content and users are consumers by playing that content.

The Rise of eSports

In the early 2000s, starting with StarCraft developed by a company called Blizzard, the eSports market was formed for consumers to watch professional gamers' matches. Before eSports, only game developers played the role of producers of content. With the advent of the eSports market, however, professional gamers who play games, broadcasters that broadcast the game, game commentators, and professional gaming teams participate as producers. In this way, the simple ecosystem of game developers producing and users consuming has expanded to include developers, users, pro-gamers, broadcasters, commentators, and gaming teams, enabling the game market to grow larger. As game developers, pro-gamers, broadcasters, and gaming teams promote games with affection and work together to make more interesting games, a market where more people participate has been created. With the advent of these new producers, users who no longer play games can become members of the ecosystem as viewers or fans of pro- gamers, allowing the ecosystem to grow larger.

User-Developed Game Ecosystem

There is another case in which the game ecosystem has been expanded by the participation of other people as producers other than just the game developers. A game called Roblox provides development tools that allow people to easily develop games. Using this development tool, users can directly create game content and provide it to other users so that users can also earn profit. By providing an online game platform where users can enjoy games created by other users, Roblox has grown into a huge game ecosystem that is currently enjoyed by more than 150 million people. In other words, moving away from the simple structure of developers producing and users consuming, users began to participate in content development and become producers, which led to the ecosystem being able to expand in a healthier way. As such, if these types of new producers participate and produce high-quality content with their own creative ideas, the game ecosystem can expand and develop even further and become even more healthy.

Blockchain Gaming (users participate in the ecosystem as producers and investors)

Through eSports and Roblox, we have been able to see how the ecosystem expands further when new producers appear. Until now, most game ecosystems have been one-way ecosystems where developers supply content as producers and gamers consume content as consumers. However, through blockchain technology, users can make NFT items in the game and trade them with tokens, so that all users can become producers and expand the ecosystem. As users’ playing the game itself is recognized as a productive activity in which they invest time, they receive tokens and NFT items, and generate profit by trading them. In other words, all users participating in the game can directly participate as producers, consumers, and investors in the game ecosystem. This is being organically combined with existing eSports and YouTube, creating the potential to expand into a huge ecosystem that cannot be compared with that of today.

In the real world we live in, almost every activity or product that we spend time on, such as growing crops, catching fish, mining minerals in mines, and selling goods, is valued and generates revenue. By using blockchain technology, it is possible to add value to all actions and outcomes created by spending time in the digital world, and all actions and outcomes performed in the game are also valued so that all users can become producers and consumers. Thus, a huge ecosystem is created. It is expected that new types of jobs and ecosystems will be created in the future through blockchain technology.

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