Start playing as a scholar and earning while you game
Play-to-earn games have become one of the most popular sectors of the blockchain space, and scholarship programs are often the way players get introduced to them. However, not all projects offer this easy entry point to newcomers. Below is a list of play-to-earn games that offer scholarship programs and an accessible onboarding mechanic for everyone.
While gaming on the blockchain can be lucrative, it often requires a significant initial investment. This can be in the form of NFT characters, land plots, spell books, and other resources necessary to enter a play-to-earn ecosystem. However, not all players have the assets to purchase these entry resources. Here is where scholarship programs and lending mechanics come in very handy.
What are scholarship programs?
The play-to-earn boom in 2021 also gave way to a new trend in the way players interacted with each other. The blockchain gaming space grew rapidly, and with that, the number of players who were unable to get in because of the spiking prices and entry requirements did too.
Scholarship programs come in many shapes and forms, yet their main goal is to offer a more accessible entry point to play-to-earn projects. In essence, scholarship programs allow players with more resources and assets to distribute and rent them out to other gamers who cannot purchase these entry assets themselves. Of course, each program has its own unique characteristics and requirements. Still, the ultimate goal is to offer as many players as possible access to the play-to-earn world.
5 games with play-to-earn scholarship programs
It would be impossible to even start talking about play-to-earn scholarships without mentioning Axie Infinity. The play-to-earn behemoth was the first to put scholarship programs and guilds on the map. The game currently has the largest scholarship community in the space.
Axie Infinity guilds and scholarships came to prominence in 2020 when the game’s NFTs spiked to all-time high prices. In order to start playing the game, users need to have a team of three Axies, represented by NFTs. As Axie NFTs were selling for hundreds of dollars each, many players turned to scholarships. These allowed them to play with managers’ NFTs and in return share their play-to-earn profits.
Axie Infinity set the bar high for scholarship programs in the space. Thousands of players are part of guilds now. And scholarship programs have become much more than simply renting out NFTs. Today, the Axie Infinity scholarship program is a way to create strong teams of skilled players, looking to play and earn together. Browse the links below to get started as an Axie Infinity scholar.
Following in the footsteps of Axie Infinity, Thetan Arena is another popular play-to-earn project with a well-developed scholarship program. Collecting NFT battle characters and building a strong team lies at the heart of the Thetan Arena gameplay. However, as the game started attracting more and more players, NFT prices spiked, and now there are many scholars out there, borrowing NFTs as part of the scholarship program.
Thetan Arena allows players to participate in one-vs-one battles, and tournaments in order to earn TCG and THC tokens. These tokens can then be used to boost the stats of your NFTs or exchanged on DEXs for other crypto assets. With backing from big names in the industry like Animoca Brands and Kardia Ventures, Thetan Arena has become a go-to play-to-earn project for players who are just starting out.
Aavegotchi has become a wonder project on the Polygon blockchain. The game has been on a steady upwards trajectory in 2022, and so have the prices for the in-game playable character NFTs. Impressively, Aavegotchi just recently launched a lending mechanic, allowing players to rent out Gotchi NFTs and participate in the play-to-earn functionalities.
Renting a Gotchi NFT allows gamers to participate in exploration missions in the newly launched Gotchiverse. These missions then award players numerous in-game resources and tokens like FUD, FOMO, ALPHA, and KEK.
Decentral Games ICE Poker
Moving into a different kind of gameplay, Decentral Games ICE Poker has become a leader in the poker side of blockchain gaming. The platform, hosted in the Decentraland virtual world, allows players who own or rent wearable NFTs to participate in daily challenges and earn ICE tokens.
The Decentral Games team has been hard at work developing a complex delegation and scholarship program. As the game started attracting more and more players, the limited supply of play-to-earn wearable NFTs became a sought-after asset. Now, Decentral Games ICE poker players can delegate their wearable NFTs and share in the daily ICE profits their delegates generate.
Last but not least, on this list, we have Splinterlands. A true play-to-earn pioneer, Splinterlands has one of the most robust scholarship communities in the space. While the entry point for the game is not that steep (a spellbook costs only $10), advancing to higher tiers and getting better rewards requires a strong deck.
To give players a better chance of building the ultimate deck, Splinterlands has created an in-game marketplace. Gamers can either purchase or rent out cards through the marketplace, allowing them to customize their decks and build a strong team. The better your team, the more rewards you get. Importantly, Splinterlands sports two in-game currencies DEC and SPS, which can be part of the tier level up rewards chests.
Sharing the play-to-earn experience
Scholarship programs have one ultimate goal – to allow as many players as possible to enjoy play-to-earn games together. Community is one of the most essential parts of the crypto space overall, and even more so in the gaming space. As the space saw a rapid growth period in 2021, scholarship programs are becoming even more important. These offer an opportunity to onboard more players and grow communities organically.
If you want to learn more about play-to-earn games, check out this detailed guide. Additionally, you can keep track of our monthly play-to-earn games review, bringing you the hottest P2E opportunities.
DappRadar will continue monitoring the play-to-earn space as more scholarship programs launch and gaming communities grow. To get the latest play-to-earn gaming updates, follow DappRadar on Twitter, and join our Discord community.