Zilliqa to launch Web3 game console in early 2023

Layer-1 Blockchain Zilliqa is preparing to dive into the world of Web3 gaming, with the launch of a hardware console and a gaming hub.

A prototype version of the console was unveiled today, featuring a sleek design with a range of ports, including HDMI, Ethernet, and USB-C and USB 3.0 connections. Full specs for the console remain a secret, though Zilliqa touts its usability, with Web3 capabilities including a crypto wallet and mining integrated to “hide the complexity of Web3 from the end user,” according to a press release shared with decode.

Zilliqa’s engineers spent six months in the research phase designing and testing the console with the intention of seamlessly integrating Web3 aspects – crypto wallet, mining software, blockchain technology – into a recognizable gaming experience.

Exact specs for the console remain a secret. Image: Zilliqa

Zilliqa “took the approach to hide the complexity of creating the embedded Web3 wallet,” Valentin Cobelea, Head of Gaming Technology at Zilliqa, told me, decode. Cobelea pointed to the example of NFT collection NBA top shot as a benchmark to strive for.

Players can earn Zilliqa (ZIL) tokens by completing in-game missions, tasks, and quests. In this case, the tokens can be considered similar to coins or rewards in traditional games, but with the added features of blockchain technology.

In addition, Zilliqa noted that “players will be able to mine ZIL tokens,” a process they expect “will lead to further decentralization of the Zilliqa blockchain.” by expanding the number of miners worldwide.”

On exactly how much income gamers could earn, both for skilled participation and mining, Cobelea said their income “depends on how good the gamers are, and the amount they earn will reflect that.”

While Zilliqa hasn’t released any details on the console’s pricing yet, it says the console may “eventually pay for itself.”

What is Zilliqa?

Founded in 2017 and launched on mainnet two years later, Zilliqa is a low-1 smart contract blockchain. In recent months, it has made aggressive efforts to increase its influence in the gaming sphere, joined the Blockchain Gaming Alliance (BGA) in April of this year, forging partnerships with esports teams MAD Lions, RRQ and more recently Alien Worlds and XBorg.

Image: Zilliqa

Zilliqa’s partnership with Web3 esports organization XBorg will help the XBorg community in gaming tournament creation and marketing efforts, as well as gain beta access to test Zilliqa’s gaming hub in October.

After this testing phase, the game console is scheduled to launch in the first quarter of 2023, with the joint release of two Zilliqa native titles, including the first-person shooter (FPS) game WEB3WAR.

The Growth of Web3 Gaming

Web3 gaming revolves around the principle that players should have full autonomy and ownership over their acquired assets, using blockchain technology such as non-replaceable tokens (NFTs).

With cryptographically unique NFTs representing in-game assets such as weapons, skins and badges, the intent is for the player to own, sell or even migrate their digital property between virtual worlds in the nascent metaverse.

But early adopters of blockchain gaming technology have faced a backlash from skeptics in the traditional gaming community, who have expressed concerns about the impact of financialization on the gameplay experience, the environmental impact of blockchain, and the effects of “play to earn” gambling on consumers in emerging markets.

Cobelea told decode that Zilliqa has no intention of adopting the “play-to-earn” model of games such as Axie Infinityallowing players in some Asian countries – at least for a while – to earn a living wage.

“We don’t want to compare ourselves to the Axie approach, but compare ourselves to the Counter-Strikes of the world, where the focus is on the gaming experience and not the earning part,” he said. “If you have fun, you enjoy the game, and then you get rewarded.”

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