A lot can happen in five years. The England football teams can lose two semi finals before finally winning a tournament, we can experience the nightmare that was the global COVID-19 pandemic, and now we find ourselves in a period of geopolitical uncertainty not seen since the Cold War.
Closer to home, and on a less important note, we’ve also seen an incredibly quick evolution of the blockchain-based games and NFT ecosystem, from regularly having conversations starting with the line “non-fungible what?” to the point we’re at now where huge brands are quickly building their presence in the space.
Back in 2018, Reality+ were one of the first publishers to dip a toe into the world of blockchain-powered mobile games when we unleashed AR combat title Reality Clash onto an unsuspecting world.
Looking back, it was a game of firsts, bringing together AR, geolocation, real-time multiplayer and in-game display ads in a way that had never been attempted before. We were certainly ambitious, but it didn’t stop us noticing what was going on in the world of cryptocurrency and thinking: “what if we made that part of the Reality Clash experience?”.
And in those good old days, ‘experience’ really was the watchword when it came to offering players the many gameplay possibilities created by the blockchain. It was all very well saying we wanted players to buy and trade in-game items and weapons as NFTs in a decentralised marketplace using our own alt coin, it was quite another to facilitate that mechanic with a low barrier to entry.
Quite simply, the general public wasn’t au fait with the world of crypto generally, let alone how to manage a wallet, what gas fee is and how a gun can have its ownership transferred from another player and loaded into your own game.
We realised early on that the onus was on us, both as an independent publisher and an industry, to present these exciting gameplay mechanics to people in a way that was easy to understand and, more importantly, easy to get their hands on.
Crucially, we made Reality Clash completely playable and fun for people without the need for them to touch its blockchain and NFT elements at all – the game was and is an awesome shooter, first and foremost.
That approach also served to give players a path to follow: If they wanted to find out more about the blockchain elements, we held their hand through the journey.
We invested significantly in R&D geared towards creating a ‘layer’ between regular and decentralised commerce, enabling players to buy Reality Clash’s RCC Gold in-game crypto using a debit card and then keeping track of/using the items they owned via a simple web-based dashboard.
No-one needed to know that RCC Gold was an Ethereum-based utility token, that transactions were being processed on a secure public ledger, or that each weapon is based on the ERC721 token standard. It just worked. And that’s the way it should be.
We’ve taken all those experiences and learnings from Reality Clash and poured them into our core Reality+ technologies and many other projects since then, encompassing both games and non-game experiences for a host of partners, including the BBC and ITV Studios.
If you take a look at Doctor Who: Worlds Apart or Thunderbirds: International Rescue Club, both deliberately put fans at the centre of the experience – it doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, an NFT veteran or a newbie, anyone can sign up and start trading and playing with digital collectibles right away.
We take the same approach towards Web3 projects and the metaverse.
Five years is almost a lifetime in the world of blockchain: Allow our proven track record (and wise old heads!) to guide your brand on its journey – get in touch with the team today.