DappRadar interviews Gabby Dizon, co-founder of Yield Guild Games
Welcome to the new DappRadar Crypto Influencer series, kicking off with the power of the DAO, blockchain gaming and frontrunner Gabby Dizon. This project aims to introduce you to prominent figures in the crypto industry and shed light on their projects and approaches to the blockchain space as a whole.
This week, we’re honored to pick the brain of Gabby Dizon, a blockchain games pioneer, and an avid NFT collector. He’s also the co-founder of Yield Guild Games, the largest guild community in the blockchain gaming space.
- Name: Gabby Dizon
- Twitter account: https://twitter.com/gabusch
- Twitter followers: 85,600
- Wallet Address: Portfolio
- Highest value NFT: CloneX #14119
- Most beloved NFT: YGG Founders Coin and Forward Together – Ethereum Edition #19/21
- Favorite NFT collection: CloneX
- Favorite blockchain game: Axie Infinity
- Biggest crypto win: Participating in Axie 2019 land sale
- Biggest crypto fail: selling a double Mystic Axie for 6 ETH
First steps in crypto, and freedom for developers
Gabby Dizon is a video and online games fan by heart. He started his professional career as a game developer close to 20 years ago, but the blockchain space quickly drew him in. He became part of the team that made the first-ever game to come out of the Philippines in 2003.
In 2014, he co-founded a mobile game studio called Altitude Games and started making games for iOS and Android devices. Finally, in 2017, news about blockchain and Ethereum, and the concept of smart contracts and programmable money reached Dizon’s horizon.
Since then, he’s been an active member of both the gaming and NFT communities, exploring new frontiers in the space. Most importantly, Gabby Dizon co-founded Yield Guild Games, one of the largest gaming guilds to date. According to Gabby, the biggest thing that drew him to the world of blockchain tech was the freedom it offers developers. His experience in traditional gaming made him realize that creativity and innovation are often stifled in big gaming studios, while games made on the blockchain offered a completely new perspective on what this industry could be.
“When I learned about blockchain and Ethereum, I immediately thought that it was going to be the thing that would change the game industry. At first, I was looking for a technology that would disrupt the industry and level the playing field all over again, but what I found during my time in the crypto space was that not only would it level the playing field, but it would also do it in a way that brings independence to people. Both individual creators and teams that wanted to create indie games had the opportunity to do so.”
Battle Racers, Yield Guild Games, and Axie Infinity
Gabby Dizon’s first foray into the blockchain gaming space was with the launch of Battle Racers. The game was part of the Decentraland ecosystem, allowing gamers to race their favorite NFT cars in the virtual world. Battle Racers is now discontinued. However, it set a solid foundation for Gabby to start exploring blockchain gaming actively.
In 2018 he joined the Axie Infinity community, which would later inspire him to start working on Yield Guild Games. As an early adopter of the Axie platform, Gabby soon established a friendship with the founding members of the game. According to him, the Axie Infinity community is one of the most welcoming in the space, which helped the game skyrocket to the top of the gaming charts.
Building on that warm welcome, Gabby Dizon was inspired to create a platform that can help players all over the world get into scholarship programs and guilds. This was the start of Yield Guild Games, which has now become one of the largest gaming communities globally.
“Axie has always been the most welcoming community, and I’ve always appreciated how they push the envelope to add DeFi elements into games.”
The power of the DAO and local communities
Yield Guild Games is a play-to-earn gaming guild that brings together a global community of players. Importantly, the platform allows players to form teams and management structures. YGG has bootstrapped hundreds of play-to-earn teams to rise to prominence through various tournaments and events centered around different play-to-earn projects.
One of the most important aspects of the Yield Guild Games platform is that it functions as a decentralized autonomous organization or DAO. Memebers of the community has exclusive control over the DAO. This allows everyone to participate in the governance of the project. Importantly, Gabby Dizon recognizes the power of the DAO to create leadership roles for the very members of that community.
Yield Guild Games has built a complex network of subDAOs. These allow local communities to create internal structures that help members more effectively. One of Gabby Dizon’s great moments of pride with Yield Guild Games is that the platform gives real people a chance to excel at what they love. One of the platform’s biggest goals and achievements is developing human talent and leadership within all aspects of the Yield Guild Games’ community.
“We have our subDAOs in Southeast Asia (YGG SEA), India (IndiGG), and Latin America (OLA GG). It’s amazing to see the growth of each player community, how unique each one is but how united they are towards doing what they enjoy, earning rewards out of it, and finding opportunities to uplift their lives and the people around them.”
Gabby Dizon’s favorite blockchain games
As a game-centric platform Yield Guild Games has spread its influence over numerous blockchain gaming projects. To date YGG has created more than 28 successful partnerships, helping communities for each respective project to reach their goals.
Throughout this journey, Gabby Dizon has selected not one or two exciting projects to add to his list of favorites. You can check out some of his top picks below. Impressively, he is not limiting himself to one kind of game, or the other. The list is varied, including racing games, trading card games, and all kinds of play-to-earn projects.
Gabby Dizon is also actively monitoring the gaming space for rising stars that can become great additions to Yield Guild Games’ list of partnerships. According to him, one of the latest projects to catch his eye is CyBall, a soccer-themed blockchain game that just launched.
“CyBall has different modes to attract both casual and competitive players with a fun game flow. YGG started onboarding scholars in CyBall, and we are continuously adding more assets to accommodate scholar demand.”
Gabby Dizon on NFTs
Blockchain games often incorporate non-fungible tokens, or NFTs in their gameplay. This is a nice way to allow players to have full ownership over their in-game assets. Axie Infinity was the platform that pioneered this approach, and this sparked an interest for Gabby Dizon. Axie NFTs form the largest gaming asset collection on the blockchain to date.
What Gabby recognizes as an even bigger achievement is that Axie Infinity continues to innovate. The project will soon allow players to take full advantage of the intellectual property rights they have over their Axies. In this sense, an Axie Infinity NFT becomes not only a playable character in the game but also an opportunity for players to unleash their creative ideas and use their Axies as a foundation.
Axie Infinity sparked Dizon’s interest in NFTs, but this passion has spread way beyond in-game items. Currently, Gabby’s favorite collection is CloneX. This is an avatar NFT project created by RTFKT Studios and he holds seven of them. He’s also using CloneX #184 as his Twitter profile picture. Impressively, out of more than 2,000 unique NFTs in his portfolio, the most expensive one, CloneX #14119, also belongs to the coveted RTFKT project.
Interestingly, Gabby’s favorite NFTs do not belong to the CloneX collection. YGG Founders Coin and Forward Together – Ethereum Edition #19/21 both have sentimental value for the Yield Guild Games co-founder. The YGG Founders Coin commemorates the start of the Yield Guild Games project. On the other hand, Forward Together is a representation of his view of the whole blockchain space and its virtues.
“One of the few NFTs I would never sell is “Forward Together” by Josie Bellini. My first piece of crypto art that I collected was from her, and this represents the Ethereum space, forward progress of technology, and how Ethereum is moving forward in a decentralized manner with DeFi, NFTs, and culture.”
NFT art and building a portfolio
The NFT space is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the blockchain space. It has opened up opportunities for people to both collect and build impressive portfolios, and to earn impressive gains by flipping collectibles. These are generally the two sides of NFT collecting, you’re either a flipper or a hodler.
Gabby Dizon qualifies himself as a hodler. He has built an impressive portfolio currently valued at over $1.8 million. You can browse through his collection with the DappRadar Portfolio Tracker.
Some impressive stats about Gabby Dizon as an NFT collector:
- He owns a total of 2,055 NFTs
- He is an avid Avastars collector with 44 Avastars NFTs
Gabby is also an avid crypto art collector. One of his favorite artists is Josie Bellini, who recently launched her first avatar NFT collection – CyberBrokers. Aside from Bellini’s projects, Dizon also owns 10 generative Art Blocks pieces. Another favorite artist of his is Shelly Soneja.
While he has built an impressive collection, Gabby Dizon is not against selling NFTs for profit. Still, one of his biggest crypto fails was to sell a double Mystic Axie NFT for 6 ETH. These hit a floor price high of more than 20 ETH last year.
“I’m more of a collector than a flipper, but at the same time, I’m conscious about creating liquidity and not being stuck with an illiquid JPEG collection when I need money. So I do take profits from time to time, but I don’t really day-trade NFTs, because that is not why I got into NFTs in the first place.”
Where is the blockchain space headed from here?
The blockchain space is still in its infancy, despite Bitcoin launching more than 10 years ago. The ecosystem of use cases and applications is very much in its early stages of development. According to Gabby Dizon, the next five years will see the blockchain gaming space bloom. His work at Yield Guild Games has shown him that there is an insatiable demand for scholarships and every day more players are looking for a way to get into the play-to-earn space.
He predicts that by the end of 2022, more than 10 million unique active wallets will interact with a blockchain-based game. For context, according to the December 2021 edition of the DappRadar and BGA Games Report, more than 1.4 million unique active wallets interacted with gaming dapps daily in 2021.
When it comes to Yield Guild Games, the project plans to onboard millions of people into the metaverse and crypto economy. Especially the people who can’t afford to buy their own NFTs or crypto assets upfront. One of the main goals for the company will be to democratize access to the metaverse. In order to do that, YGG will once again rely on the power of the DAO. The project will continue to expand its operations into new regions through subDAOs. Additionally, Gabby Dizon’s team will put an emphasis on game-specific subDAOs that are focused on a particular game community within Yield Guild Games. Some examples of already existing game-specific sub-divisions include YGGLOK (League of Kingdoms) and YGGSPL (Splinterlands).
On the topic of NFTs, Gabby Dizon predicts that NFT-based platforms will open up even more. Especially, by allowing developers to use their NFT assets and create new spin-off projects. Importantly, this will shine a light on NFTs as the foundational asset, rather than simply an in-game element.
“I think, as some of the platforms accrue value (for example, Axie Infinity), there will be more applications that we’ll be building on top of the assets like Axies, or very popular NFT projects, like CloneX. The assets that gain the most value become platforms for themselves, because in crypto, applications and experiences are built on top of these assets, not the other way around.”
Thank you, Gabby Dizon!
A big thank you to Gabby Dizon for giving such a great start to the DappRadar Crypto Influencer series. If you enjoyed reading this interview, follow DappRadar on Twitter and get the latest news and updates first.
“I’m excited about the opportunities that Web3 can provide overtime to empower people all over the world and remove the geographical boundaries that people have been used to.”
Much like Gabby, we’re excited about the web3 revolution. We’ll keep monitoring the space as new projects and prominent influencers come to the spotlight. To learn more about Gabby Dizon and his blockchain projects follow him on Twitter, and check out Yield Guild Games.