Gods Unchained Provides An Actually Fun Play-To-Earn Experience. Is It A Winner?

Is Gods Unchained the unicorn you were looking for?

Gods Unchained Provides An Actually Fun Play-To-Earn Experience. Is It A Winner?

Is Gods Unchained the unicorn you were looking for? The biggest criticism Play-To-Earn games get is that they’re not particularly fun to play. The biggest criticism modern video games get is that they’re money-making operations cleverly designed to get you to spend your hard-earned cash. Gods Unchained challenges both assumptions with a Play-To-Earn video game that doesn’t require an NFT purchase or even holding a specific token to play. 

That’s right, Gods Unchained is actually free to use. 

And you can earn money if you play your cards right. The game’s architect is Chris Clay, former Game Director of the juggernaut “Magic: The Gathering Arena.” Both are card games adapted to the digital world. The main difference between them is the Play-To-Earn aspect Gods Unchained has. In other words, cryptocurrency is the difference.

Originally built on the Ethereum blockchain and launched in 2019, Gods Unchained moved the whole game to their Layer 2 solution last year. The company behind the game developed Immutable X with NFTs in mind. Among the perks it comes with, the Gods Unchained marketplace doesn’t charge gas fees, and it’s purported to be carbon neutral. ImmutableX is currently used by huge companies and several other Immutable game titles. Migrating to it proved to be the right decision, as the numbers clearly show. According to the game’s whitepaper:

“Since moving to Immutable X in late June 2021 (complete migration), over 650,000 Gods Unchained NFT secondary trades have been made. In contrast, the entire Ethereum mainnet NFT trading volume amounted to 420,577 trades across the same period (source: nonfungible.com). The migration to Immutable X enabled Gods Unchained alone to achieve NFT trading volume that is 1.5 times greater than Ethereum mainnet, while consuming 99% less energy to perform those transactions.”

The game’s main value proposition is that users get total ownership of their in-game items and cards. And because they own those cards, they can sell them. Immutable built a marketplace for them to do so. Back to the whitepaper, “In Gods Unchained, players can completely own their digital items, giving them the freedom to trade, sell, and use their cards within or beyond the game – just like owning real, tangible cards.” 

Gods Unchained: the cards

What we have here is a trading card game. New players receive a Welcome Set for free. By playing and winning matches, users can upgrade their cards and acquire a Core Set. Experienced players have been collecting or buying cards for months. From all the cards in their hand, they assemble a strategic deck of 30 cards. There’s a catch, though. The game lets you pick between six gods: Light, Nature, Death, Deception, Magic, and War. Players must choose cards that align with the God they choose, and complete their arsenal with neutral cards.

From a commercial perspective, Gods Unchained has sold three limited edition expansion packs. The Genesis set sold out in 2019, the Trial of the Gods in 2020, and the Divine Order in 2021. These contain special cards that unleash special powers, which are helpful but not necessary to win matches. 

Free players can sell Meteorite-level Core cards to other players in the open market. To make one, a user needs to collect two identical Core cards and, armed with $GOLD and Flux, mint an NFT that represents the new card. Gods Unchained elaborates further in the whitepaper:

“The Forge in Gods Unchained allows players to craft new NFTs that can be used in-game or traded on the marketplace. At a basic level, players with two identical “plain” cards (ie. non-NFT cards) can combine them together to create a “Meteorite” version of that card, a process that mints the asset onto Immutable X, creating a new card with real world value. This is called “fusing.” 

Gods Unchained’s Play-To-Earn aspect

At the center of the Gods Unchained economy is $GODS, which is both a governance and a utility token. More about that later. According to the whitepaper:

“To catalyze competitive play and stimulate engagement, players can earn meaningful currencies and items, including the ERC-20 $GODS token, by simply playing the game. The ability to earn tangible rewards serves as the key ingredient to supercharge our future growth.”

So, they’re not giving players tokens out of the goodness of their hearts. The Play-To-Earn aspect of the game is a growth tactic that creates demand for the $GODS token. In turn, that demand creates an increasing value. So, as long as Gods Unchained remains popular, the value of the game’s tokens is justified.

Besides forging valuable cards, Gods Unchained used to host a weekend tournament in which competent players could earn rewards. In August, however, Immutable announced the Daily Play & Earn feature. Nowadays, players can earn fractions of $GODS every day. They can also earn the other two in-game currencies, Flux and Stars. More about them later. 

The Daily Play & Earn feature also introduces weighted rewards into the game. That is, people using NFT cards on their decks will earn more than people playing with regular decks. Which is only fair. And, the gamification features incentivize the forging and trading of cards. The Weekend Ranked tournaments will still happen, but “$GODS rewards will be removed from Weekend Ranked after Daily Play and Earn is launched.” What will players get, then? “Rewards from Weekend Ranked will change to Packs.” Of digital cards, that is.

The other way to earn in Gods Unchained is by staking $GODS. According to the whitepaper, 20% of all primary sales and 20% of secondary trading fees in Gods Unchained will be paid for in $GODS. All those coins are “sent to the rewards pool, from which it will be distributed proportionately to all token holders who actively stake $GODS.” Be aware that “to qualify as ‘actively staking,’ the user must have voted on a proposal in the last 30 days, and must have held $GODS within Immutable X for the full duration of the specified 7 days period.“

Gods Unchained: the coins ($GODS, Flux, and Stars)

The only Gods Unchained token that exists in the blockchain is $GODS. Flux and Stars are in-game soft currencies that serve specific purposes. According to the documentation, you can earn Flux “by playing the Ranked Constructed game mode, Gauntlet of the Gods.” This is a mini-game, and playing it is currently the only way to get Flux. There’s a fee in $GODS and Flux to fuse two cards into an NFT, so the demand is there.

Players “gain Stars by winning games in the Ranked Constructed queue.” They can use those Stars to buy Core and Welcome cards from the Star Store, “which will contain a rotating list of cards for you to acquire for your account.” Initially, the only way to earn those cards was to participate in Weekend Ranked events. It’s important to notice that these buyable cards will not be NFTs. They’re regular cards akin to the ones you get at the beginning of the game. 

All of the card sales outside the game take place in the Immutable X marketplace. Inside the game, though, the main currency is $GODS, which is both a utility token and a governance token, and has a fixed supply of 500 million. In the future, all the fees will be denominated in $GODS. So far, the currency is used for the rewards, for fusing, and for the reserves of all the organizations that the game contains. Plus, the demand creates the exit liquidity for the investors who bought $GODS in the initial public sale.

To describe its utility as a governance token, we go back to the whitepaper: 

“$GODS Token holders will be able to vote on token-related proposals via decentralized governance. Proposals will include topics such as:

  • How to allocate token reserve
  • Community and Ecosystem fund distribution
  • Changes in $GODS token supply
  • Sponsorship or grant recipients”

The Immutable team went full Proof-Of-Stake when creating their tokenomics. “The more $GODS a user holds, the greater their voting power,” they warn. Does that guarantee that the creators will always hold the ultimate power? Probably. However, Gods Unchained is just a game, so it’s not the end of the world.

Buy/ No Buy Recommendation

This one is easy. 

The only way to win here is by enjoying the game and treating it as the hours of fun as its main reward. Consider buying cards and $GODS and participating in the whole ecosystem. Or take the heroic route and earn your deck and funds by playing. Either way, enjoy the deep lore, the original music, and the art that emanates from Gods Unchained.

If you end up winning big with $GODS, let it be the icing on the cake.

If you’re not interested in a game, skip it and don’t look back. Gods Unchained is nowhere near a get-rich-quick scheme. You’ll have to learn the game and dedicate daily hours to it, and there’s a possibility you won’t ever break even. 

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