Team & Resources: 5/5 - Plai Labs (previously part of Jam City), with experience in game development and an ability to deliver excellence across multiple genres, technologies, and IPs, is a great starting point for the development of Champions Ascension.
Game Design & Fun: 4/5 - The AAA production quality supported by a deep character progression and a unique combat system puts Champions Ascension above most other games on the market. The social engagement systems coupled with a world crafted around rich lore push the experience into very interesting territories. All that remains to be seen is how it all comes together.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: 3/5 - Though the tokenomics is not well defined, what’s revealed thus far points to a consumable-based economy. The critique here would be that the 2,122 owners of the 7,622 Prime Eternals will have a very large influence on the $MASSINA and $DIAMOND tokens. These details might change in the future.
Team & Resources: 3/5 - The founding team has a technological bent; however, it has also onboarded experienced talent from AAA studios. The team’s funds might not be enough to sustain a AAA project like Delysium, but its approach of launching in stages should help it generate revenue and extend the company’s runway. All that will highly depend on the scale that the game is able to achieve in an extremely competitive market.
Game Design & Fun: 3/5 - As of now, Delysium’s main game mode is a Battle Royale, but there are various other modes based on entry criteria and rewards. The team aims for this to be a AAA experience with high production values and graphics. However, what’s unique here is the ecosystem built around Delysium Multiverse Operators (DMOs) that will help create a varied set of experiences for players while at the same time giving valuable time for the team to create tools. The downside is that all of these toolsets are expensive and time-consuming to build, with some (like the AI beings) not adding to the experience at this point in time. The team needs to prioritize its focus — which should ideally be the core Battle Royale experience, which in itself is a tough nut to crack.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: 3/5 - The team has kept the tokenomics simple, aiming to generate value not just through the $DES tokens but also through multiple other means. On the positive side, the tokenomics is not inflationary. All that the team needs to do now is to generate enough revenue through scale so as to offset the value of the $DES tokens given out as rewards.
Galaxy Fight Club
Team & Resources: 3/5 - The team is relatively young and has been among the early movers in the crypto space. The leadership is marketing-heavy, which makes sense, as partnerships and IP collaboration are the game’s unique selling proposition (USP). However, the team currently lacks other important skillsets as best we can tell.
Game Design & Fun: 3/5 - The game design is not complex and has good considerations for avoiding inflation. Galaxy Fight Club (GFC) borrows heavily from Brawl Stars for its gameplay and aims to bring in cross-platform IP, which is not proven in web3 yet. Another important factor that will define the next steps for GFC are Apple’s policies that prohibit NFTs from unlocking additional features in the game. Currently, on-chain fighters are stronger and give more rewards. This is a grey area, and it is yet to be seen how Apple will react to it. Finally, top-down shooters constitute a crowded market, and it’s unclear if the GFC team has the ability to execute on the success vectors of top-performing competitors.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: 2/5 - All of the token issuance only applies to the Genesis Galaxy Fighters, making them disproportionately powerful in their ability to influence the token price. A small amount of users will end up holding a large amount of tokens. This is balanced by the fact that F2P players can earn by selling Keys and Weapons to others. Tokens can influence player behavior, and the current tokenomics of $GCOIN leave a lot on the table. Also, Apple will not make this process any easier, as it will force transactions between players to be done outside the app, thereby breaking the flow.
In this deconstruction, we look at three blockchain games that are currently in development:
- Galaxy Fight Club
- Champions Ascension
We analyze these games through the lenses of Team/Resources, Game Design/Fun, and Tokenomics/Sustainability and score each factor on a scale of 1.0 (terrible) to 5.0 (amazing). A 3.0 is a neutral but non-negative evaluation. There will also be a Summary section for each game that gives an overall score and evaluation.
This is our 4th iteration of this style of analysis. In our first Game Radar piece, we covered Genopets, Cross the Ages, and Aurory; in our second piece, we covered Guild of Guardians, Illuvium, and Phantom Galaxies; in our third piece, we analyzed Blocklords, AI Arena, and Star Atlas.
Note that in most cases this analysis is based on a combination of whitepapers, official Medium posts, and videos of gameplay. Our evaluations may change as games launch or more information becomes available. If you would like to see a full deconstruction of one of these games when they launch more fully, let us know!
Champions Ascension has the typical three-word catchphrase of ‘Collect, Battle, Ascend’ and is a sprawling vision of a web3 universe set in the world of Massina, which combines games, storytelling, community, and many other experiences. Currently, the game is in its pre-alpha stage and is available on Windows only.
Team & Resources
Champions Ascension is being developed by Plai Labs, which broke off as a separate entity from Jam City on January 20th, 2023, with an announcement of a $32M funding round led by a16z. This is a great pedigree for a development team, as Jam City has 20+ games under its belt that have managed to amass 1.3B installs and generate $2.5B in their lifetime. The team has experience with IPs like Harry Potter, Frozen, and Jurassic Park, plus a couple of its own original IPs.
Plai Labs is led by CEO Chris DeWolfe (ex-CEO and co-founder of MySpace and Jam City) and CTO Aber Whitcomb (ex-CTO and co-founder of MySpace and Jam City), along with 8 other founding members from Jam City supported by another 50 staff.
It’s been over a year since the project was announced. After the mint in February 2022, the first version of the whitepaper was released in May 2022, while a pre-alpha build was released to a limited audience later in September. Since then, the team has been working with the community and keeping it up to date on the project.
According to its vision statement, “Plai Labs is building the next generation of social platforms. We are applying our proven track record in Social Media, Game Mechanics, and Advanced Technology to build products that are used by 100s of millions of people around the world.” The company’s name — Plai — comes from ‘Play with AI.’ One can safely assume that the use of AI technology will play an important role in its strategy.
Team & Resources: Score 5/5
Plai Labs, with its experience in game development and an ability to deliver excellence across multiple genres, technologies, and IPs, is a great starting point for the development of Champions Ascension. Plus, with a fresh $32M in funding, its war chest of capital is full.
Game Design & Fun
The details around Champions Ascension are still evolving; even while writing this report, the whitepaper was being reworked. However, there is enough information to go off of based on what has been shared with the community so far.
Champions Ascension aims to be a free-to-play, cross-platform game. It is currently hosted on a private EVM-compatible chain using Evmos (which helps in bringing Ethereum-based assets and apps to the interoperable Cosmos ecosystem), but it will be looking for scaling solutions. Let’s look at the various aspects of the game design.
The Champion NFTs are at the center of the experience. Let’s explore their traits:
Every Champion belongs to 1 of the 12 Families. Each Family has a particular gameplay style and lore attached to it.
Champions from any of the 12 families can have any one of the 7 Essences. Their relevance is similar to the rock-paper-scissors mechanic. If Essence A has an advantage over Essence B, then A will deal 1.25x damage to B, while B will deal 0.75x damage to A. If there is no direct relationship, then there is no damage multiplier.
Every Champion has six (body) parts, and each of these parts has a Rarity and an Essence. If the Essence of the part matches that of the Champion, then the Purity of the Champion increases, giving it additional benefits.
Champions can also wield weapons that affect their playstyles depending on the weapons’ unique move sets. These weapons can be forged with the parts acquired by playing the game.
Pets are airdropped to the holders of the Champions. They will follow players around on their journeys and help in battle. There is a stat benefit if the Essence of the pet matches that of the Champion. They may also be used in mini-games in the Champions Ascension universe.
Combat Gameplay. Source: YouTube
The Combat System is one of the unique aspects of Champions Ascension. It’s an action-based system with a camera angle similar to God of War: Ragnarok. There are very few games that go down that route due to the relative difficulty of balancing an action-based combat system as opposed to a turn-based one.
Players can move around and lock on to one of the many opponents. They can attack with their individual parts or perform evasive maneuvers.
Each of the Champion’s traits has a role to play in the combat system. Their impact is divided into damage and status effects. The permutation and combination of the weapons, parts, families, and essence that a Champion is associated with give rise to plenty of variations in the combat system, making each battle feel unique.
Champions fall into four categories: Challengers, Gladiators, Eternals, and Prime Eternals. Players are able to tier up by leveling up, completing challenges, and burning resources. Let’s understand the details of each of these tiers. Higher-tiered Champions have better stats, higher earning potential of the $ESSENCE token, and multiple other benefits, as shown in the table below. (These details are subject to change.)
The Prime Eternals can be considered a separate tier since they are one of a kind. They have the ability to generate $DIAMOND and $MASSINA tokens through staking. They are also the only ones that can have parts of Divine rarity.
Whenever two Champions breed, the traits are distributed as follows:
- Family: There is a 50% chance of the child belonging to the Family of either of the parents.
- Essence: There is a 50% chance of the child having the essence of either of the parents.
- Parts: It’s a complex system, as defined in this document.
Breeding is always tricky in web3, as it can lead to unchecked inflation. Champions Ascension tries to alleviate this by not allowing Challengers to breed, which will be largest in number, since it takes time, effort, and resources to level up. The other way in which the team aims to manage inflation is by having a death mechanic where players will have to pay a fee to return to the world. However, it remains to be seen how this evolves in practice.
Explore and Socialize
The land of Massina aims to be “an ever-expanding theme park entertainment experience centered around the main attraction of visceral, high-stakes gladiatorial combat.” As shown in the diagram above (and this too might change in the future), the combat happens in the Colosseum Eternal. While the details of the Land ownership are being fleshed out, owners will have the ability to build resource generators and markets on top of it and serve the larger community.
Social activities are at the core of the experience. As shown in the video above, there will be social mini-games like Drunk Racing Tournament, a dice game called Dudo, and even a mini-game where players can generate AI art.
Most of the retention will be attributed to the core combat and economic experience. Once that is proven, the social and community aspects will definitely be a meaningful addition to that.
Plai has taken the effort to build a sprawling lore around the world of Massina. The dev team has kept the community engaged in the world by releasing text-based lore that gives it a deeper meaning. There are currently 29 chapters of lore spread across 3 seasons.
Gameplay & Fun: Score 4/5
The AAA production quality supported by a deep character progression and a unique combat system puts Champions Ascension above most other games on the market. The social engagement systems coupled with a world crafted around rich lore push the experience into very interesting territories. All that remains to be seen is how it all comes together, but given this team’s previous success with IP like Harry Potter, we’ll provide the benefit of the doubt for now.
Tokenomics & Sustainability
The tokenomics is the least defined part of the project. In the previous version of the whitepaper, the following economy loop was defined:
The economy is what ties Champions Ascension’s systems together and is aided by the $ESSENCE, $MASSINA, and $DIAMOND tokens. These tokens were defined in the previous version of the whitepaper. Let’s quickly look at their Sources and Utilities.
Champions Ascension is primarily a consumable-based economy (as opposed to a durable-based one.) This can be seen in the decision to let Champions die while at the same time giving players the ability to bring them back to life for a fee. Though there aren’t a lot of details on the durability of the Weapons and Parts, it would be fair to assume (and if not, suggest) that the team considers them to be consumables with individual upgrade loops. This ensures that the player continually puts in time and effort and frequently engages with the economy.
However, one area of concern is power that the Prime Eternals have with respect to their ability to earn $MASSINA tokens. These are the only tokens that will be able to claim land, which can have resource-producing buildings built on top of it.
A part of the motivation for players here would be to earn. The task at hand for the team is to get players to focus on the fun and social aspects of the game, which will be an extremely iterative task. The team has had its share of negative experiences with the minting process of the Prime Eternals. In December 2021, only 7,622 out of the intended 10,000 were sold, as some metadata pertaining to the properties of these NFTs was leaked, leading to information asymmetry and a lack of confidence among buyers. Also, the latest mint in January 2023 was paused for a short time due to an error.
Though the team is experienced at developing games, the web3 side of things needs some additional learning, and it’s no surprise that Plai Labs has had to iterate on its whitepaper.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: Score 3/5
Though the tokenomics is not well-defined, what’s revealed thus far points to a consumable-based economy. The critique here would be that the 2,122 owners of the 7,622 Prime Eternals will have a very large influence on the $MASSINA and $DIAMOND tokens. These details might change in the future.
Summary: Average Score of 4/5
Champions Ascension is a promising project from an experienced AAA developer. The experience is centered around deep progression systems, unique combat systems, and mini-games for social engagement, all tied together with a rich and sprawling lore. Though the tokenomics is not well defined as of now, the prudent approach will hopefully help the team create a sustainable economy.
Delysium describes itself as an “AI-powered open world with diverse free-to-own universes.” The project will start off with a Battle Royale game while the team will keep adding other modes to the open world experience. Of interest in this project is the use of AI, a GaaS (Games as a Service) model aimed at disrupting the traditional publishing model, and AAA quality execution built using web3 tech. The game will be on PC, with an expected milestone of Q1 2023 (according to the whitepaper), and will use ImmutableX for its NFTs. Let’s dig in.
Team & Resources
Delysium has been incubated by rctAI (founded in 2018), which aims to build AI solutions for the games industry, led by Yuheng Chen (CEO), Xiankun Wu (COO), and Yan Zhang (CTO). Though the founding team does not have games industry experience, Delysium is led by Bo Mei (Executive Producer) who has been with Riot China for almost 8 years as one of its leading producers. He is supported by a team of nearly 100 game devs with AAA experience from Ubisoft, EA, Scopely, Kabam, etc.
In March 2022, Delysium managed to raise $4M in a funding round led by Alameda Research, Galaxy Interactive, and Republic Crypto. The latest round in October 2022 for $10M was led by Anthos Capital, with ImmutableX also participating. That round would have definitely helped the team sidestep the FTX fallout.
The team aims to launch in stages, with its first playable build already out in October 2022. The intent seems to be to launch the PvP (Battle Royale) experience in the first year, followed by other PvE and PvP modes in the second year. Eventually the team wants to give the community the power to create through UGC modes.
Team & Resources: Score 3/5
The founding team has a technological bent; however, it has onboarded experienced talent from AAA studios. The funds might not be enough to sustain a AAA project like Delysium, but its approach of launching in stages should help it generate revenue and extend the company’s runway. All that will highly depend on the scale that the game is able to achieve in an extremely competitive market.
Game Design & Fun
Let’s look at the various aspects of Delysium’s gameplay.
Open World MMO Universe with UGC
Delysium aims to be an open world MMO with destructible elements. The size of the map is not yet known, but it needs to be big enough for the exploration and collection features to be meaningful. Its suite of UGC features give players and operators the tools to create unique game assets and modes, which are linked to on- and off-chain incentives.
Delysium’s gameplay. Source: YouTube
In the pre-alpha test above, the team opened up the game to the community to showcase the gameplay and player customization systems.
Delysium Multiverse Operators (DMO)
Delysium is a collection of multiple universes operated by a Delysium Multiverse Operator (DMO), each of whom has created varied experiences for players who are rewarded through the On-Chain Incentive Layer (OIL).
In order to become a DMO, players need to buy the Delysium Multiverse License NFT (DML) and stake $DES tokens. There will be 100 DMLs as part of the genesis collection that will be minted for free. There is also a recruitment process for additional DMO licenses, but the total number is yet to be defined. The amount of tokens to be staked varies from $100K to $300K for a validity period of 6 to 24 months.
DMOs’ initial expectations would be to generate a positive ROI on their capital/time investment. The primary revenue generator would be the fees that the DMO earns through paid Battle Royale modes (elaborated on below). Weapons and Character customizations will also be available for sale and should also contribute to a DMO’s income. The Delysium team will take a 50% cut of the revenue generated by every universe. Of course, maintaining, managing, and generating revenue from a shooter is no easy feat, and both Delysium and the DMOs will have much to prove.
The DMOs can then create customized experiences for players who play in their universe and have the freedom to issue incentives using any on-chain token (not necessarily $DES) or off-chain rewards. Each DMO operates an instance of the game, similar to having servers in an MMO. Players can play in one or many servers/universe, with each one having custom Battle-Royale-based game modes and UGC-based customizable rewards.
A DMO operator can have their own rules for distributing rewards to players. The Delysium team also incentivizes every universe through the Delysium Multiverse Accelerator (DMA), which uses the Prosperity Algorithm. This algorithm is influenced by the Staked Contribution Factor (based on total value locked, period for which $DES is staked) and the Activity Contribution Factor (based on active users, asset trading volume). It’s rather complex!
Given the specific DMO and incentive structure, every universe should theoretically be able to create unique enough experiences to attract players. Now, let’s look at the tools that enable the DMOs to provide these customized experiences.
The team has created three infrastructure layers that help the DMOs operate their universes:
- Experience Layer: The Delysium team completely owns the development of the experience layer, which is basically the battle royale game with different modes, items, launcher, wallet system, and incentive system. The DMOs can use these tools to entertain players coming to their universe. In the future, the goal is to create additional PvE and PvP modes that each DMO can customize to their liking.
- Data Layer: The data generated by the players in the universe is provided to the DMOs through an API so that they can analyze player behavior and perform live-ops within their own universe.
- Incentive Layer: This tool will help DMOs determine their own rulesets around rewarding players through existing or new tokens. Delysium will be primarily using $IMX, but the DMOs can use $ETH, $IMX, $MATIC, $SOL, etc., along with stablecoins.
This is a very long and ambitious list of feature sets that the Delysium team is aiming for. How it all comes together will depend on its execution and prioritization skills. Hopefully, it does not punch above its weight too soon.
In exchange for providing the tools, the DMOs pay 50% of their universe’s revenue to the Delysium team through the $DES token. Let’s now look at the initial game modes that will be available in the game.
Battle Royale Modes
The first game mode available will be a 42-person Battle Royale played in 3-person teams. Players need to collect loot, strategize, and fight off the other teams in an ever-shrinking environment in order to win. The rewards and rulesets depend on the configurations made by the DMO. Here are a couple of options available:
Given the association with rctAI, one of the pivotal philosophies is to enhance the game experience using AI. Delysium does this by populating its world with AI NPCs that can hold assets, participate in the various modes, as well as earn from the game. It is a unique concept that is perfect to be applied through smart contracts. In order for their behavior to be more immersive, these AI Metabeings have four systems:
- Conversational System (based on Natural Language Processing)
- Behavioral System (based on Deep Reinforcement Learning)
- Rules and Scripts System (manually programmed behaviors)
- Text to Speech System (customized voices)
Every DMO will get 50 AI beings for free. Additional metabeings can be purchased from the Delysium team for $100/AI being. Since the first playable mode will be a battle royale, it is unclear how these AI-related features will add value. They might do it in the future when this is a truly open world game. However, right now they can prove to be a huge development distraction and scope creep.
Game Design & Fun: Score 3/5
As of now, Delysium’s main game mode is a Battle Royale, but there are various other modes based on entry criteria and rewards. The team aims for this to be a AAA experience with high production values and graphics. However, what’s unique here is the ecosystem built around DMOs that will help create a varied set of experiences for players while at the same time giving valuable time for the team to create tools. The downside is that all of these toolsets are expensive and time-consuming to build, with some (like the AI beings) not adding to the experience at this point in time. The team needs to prioritize what it wants to focus on — ideally, the core Battle Royale experience, which in itself is a tough nut to crack.
Tokenomics & Sustainability
The main token of Delysium is $DES, which is EVM-based and has a limited quantity of 3B.
The token allocation seems to follow the standard model, with the Reserve/Treasury occupying 55% of the allocation. The rest is divided among the team, investors, market makers, and airdrops. The emission schedule aims to unlock all of the tokens over four years.
What is important for the sustainability is how Delysium will generate revenue. It aims to do it in multiple ways:
- Reselling and staking of $DES by DMOs.
- 50% rev share from DMOs.
- Selling additional AI Metabeings and functionality from them.
- Selling off-chain assets like Battle Passes, Subscriptions, Coins, and Virtual Items.
- Selling on-chain NFTs like guns, skins, collectibles, etc.
The Delysium team aims to give part of the revenue it has generated back to the ecosystem through the Prosperity Algorithm, as mentioned above.
The governance in Delysium happens through the DMA (Delysium Metaverse Accelerator) tokens. There are 50K of those, the first 10K of which will be sold for $1,000/token. From the 10,001st DMA token onwards, the price will be increased by $25 for every 100th token. Holders of the DMA token will get higher voting rights along with multiple other rewards. However, this creates a system where there are three types of staking mechanisms: direct $DES staking by the players, $DES staking by the DMOs, and DMA staking. The DMA token seems like a system created to sell higher voting rights in order to generate additional revenue, which could create plutocratic problems if not careful.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: Score 3/5
The team aims to capture value in the $DES token. Even though it allows DMOs to use any other token in their universe, the 50% revenue share with the Delysium team will be in the $DES token. All that the team needs to do now is generate enough revenue through scale so as to offset the value of the $DES tokens given out as rewards. This can be a very hard battle in a densely populated Battle Royale market.
Summary: Average Score of 3/5
Delysium aims to be a AAA open world experience that brings a lot of new ideas like DMOs, AI beings, and new incentive structures to the table. The team seems to be conscious of the competitiveness of the Battle Royale market and is trying to stand out through these ambitious features. But being new and innovative does not necessarily mean that they will work. It also reduces the development and design focus and can quickly lead to feature creep. The proof will be in the pudding, and the pudding here will be the ability to attract both builders and players - and then scale.
Galaxy Fight Club
Galaxy Fight Club (GFC) started as a project in mid-2021 with the aim of achieving NFT interoperability at a time when PFP Projects (like BAYC, CryptoPunks, etc.) were dominating the space. The game has been through a couple of changes since then but has stuck to its goal of interoperability through a Brawl Stars-like PvP game with play-to-earn mechanics in which players can bring in NFTs from other projects. Let’s understand how it aims to do this.
Team & Resources
The GFC team is led by Dan Le (Chief Gaming Officer) who has worked in the Vietnamese gaming industry in companies like OneSoft and VNG as a lead game designer. Marketing and Partnerships are handled by founder Ado who comes from a strategy consulting background, while Yassin Solimane (Chief Marketing Officer) had started a marketing agency in the past. According to the official website, they are supported by a team of 30 members.
The team raised the initial capital in August 2021 through the sale of NFTs and its token, $GCOIN. Following that, GFC has had one other funding round in February 2022 when it raised $7M from 28 investors led by Animoca Brands, Sequoia Capital, and SkyVision Capital.
The game is out on Google and Apple’s app stores with very web3-limited functionality. The roadmap is defined only until 2022, and the team has yet to clarify the goals for 2023 in its whitepaper.
Team & Resources: Score 3/5
The team is relatively young and has been one of the early movers in the crypto space. The leadership is marketing-heavy, which makes sense, as partnerships and IP collaboration is a unique selling proposition. The team also seems reasonably backed, but it’s bizarre how little they have shared about the roadmap and goals beyond last year.
Game Design & Fun
GFC’s gameplay. Source: YouTube
Gameplay and Core Loop
GFC is inspired by Brawl Stars, which is a free-to-play, top-down, shooter-based MOBA. There are multiple modes available (e.g., Team, Solo, Custom, and Training). The most popular mode for this genre is the Team mode — a time-based 3v3 mode in which the team with the most kills in the end wins. The top-down view, however, does not help with the game’s goal of players being able to showcase the 3D avatars from their collections.
GFC’s core loop is straightforward. It consists of:
- Get Fighters and Weapons
- There are trial fighters for F2P players with lower stats, while the GFC Genesis NFT fighters are better performers. This does make it a pay-to-win experience.
- Different weapons have different playstyles and are acquired through loot boxes.
- Players can play in multiple modes like 3v3, 1v1, Tournaments, Battle Royale, etc. The demo currently offers just the 3v3 and 1v1 matches.
- Since players can get NFTs through loot boxes, there is an energy system for the characters that helps regulate the number of NFTs and avoid inflation.
- Get Rewards
- Keys are the main form of rewards in GFC.
- Keys come in two types (Gold and Silver), and they open loot boxes. Opening loot boxes, however, requires the $GCOIN token. These are NFTs and can be traded.
- Keys are the source of Weapons in the game. Gold keys give higher-tiered weapons as rewards while silver keys give lower-tiered ones.
- The second mechanism to avoid inflation is a limit to the number of Keys that are rewarded for a specific time period.
- There will be Tournaments that will give $GCOINS as rewards to participants.
- Invest or Earn
- Players who own the Genesis GFC fighters get a regular supply of $GCOIN tokens based on the rarity of the NFT.
- Others (including F2P players) can earn through trading the Keys or Weapons they’ve acquired after playing.
- Players can also use these Weapons to create 2nd-gen GFC Fighters or stronger versions of other Weapons and then sell them on the market.
The team has taken learnings from other projects in the space and is focused on controlling inflation through a limited supply of its NFTs.
Two factors determine the outcome of a battle:
- Strength of the Fighter/Weapon
- Race of the Fighter determines 25% of the Strength.
- Armor of the Fighter determines 25% of the Strength.
- Weapon of the Fighter determines 50% of the Strength.
Every battle helps players progress in the game through the following two progression systems:
- Ranking (trophies)
- Players can win and lose trophies in Ranked matches. This determines their Rank from 1 to 40.
- A higher Rank increases the drop rates for Keys.
- Leveling (experience points)
- Players get experience points on winning and losing a match. These points help them level up from 1 to 40. The points required to level up are exponential in nature.
- Leveling up unlocks better rewards through the Level Rewards Program, which consists of cosmetic items and weapons.
Both the Rank and Level are tied to the player account and not to an NFT, which means that it cannot be sold through NFTs. Currently, the app does not support web3 functionality like opening loot boxes, forging weapons, and training characters. They need to be done on the website. This breaks the experience and is an issue common to most web3 games.
Next, let’s understand the Fighter and Weapon NFTs in more detail.
Fighters are the basic building block of the game, and GFC also boldly proposes the ability to use NFTs from other PFPs. According to the whitepaper:
This is a claim that risks being an unachievable content treadmill. Every PFP collection has its own art style, and for the characters to be playable in the game would require immense art efforts.
Here are the different types of Fighters:
The partner fighters are the NFTs that can be used from other projects. They behave exactly like the default characters and are not as strong as the GFC fighters. This way, the team is primarily using them as an acquisition tool, but it will be difficult to justify the high development cost.
The Genesis and 2nd-gen GFC fighters definitely have an advantage in terms of them earning additional rewards. What remains to be seen is how the team treats the in-game stats of these characters, which it hasn’t revealed yet, saying that it “creates an imbalance of information between GFC token owners and partnering collection”.
The objective of many F2P web3 games is to get as many free players to eventually hold on-chain assets. This will soon become a topic similar to converting free to paid players in a traditional F2P game. With that in mind, every game needs to have multiple assets that can be owned by as many players as possible. In that respect, GFC has designed its weapon NFTs to be a key resource that can be wielded by F2P players as well. They are limited in quantity and vary in strength based on their Tier. They are classified as melee and ranged weapons with stats that affect the playstyle. The following are the sources of the different tiers of weapons:
Apart from the main game, weapons are also used for:
- Forging other Weapons
- Weapons are the raw ingredients to forge stronger weapons.
- X number of weapons + $GCOINs (burned) = next tier of weapon.
- Training 2nd-gen Fighters
- 1 Galaxy Fighter + X number of weapons (burned) + $GCOIN (burned) = 2nd generation Galaxy Fighter.
As mentioned above, the weapon supply is controlled by limiting the number of keys given.
Game Design & Fun: Score 3/5
The game design is not complex and has good considerations for avoiding inflation. Galaxy Fight Club borrows heavily from Brawl Stars for its gameplay and boldly aims bring in cross-platform IP, which is not proven in web3 yet. Another important factor that will define the next steps for GFC are Apple’s policies that prohibit NFTs from unlocking additional features in the game. Currently, on-chain fighters are stronger and give more rewards. This is a grey area, and it is yet to be seen how Apple will react to it. Finally, top-down shooters constitute a crowded market, and it’s unclear if the GFC team has the ability to execute on the success vectors of top-performing competitors.
Tokenomics & Sustainability
$GCOIN is the limited quantity token that will be used for the game. There is a cap of 150M tokens which will be released over 40 months.
The relevant part of the tokenomics for the players is the Gaming Issuance that accounts for 40%, or 60M $GCOINS, the main source of which is the daily yield from the 10K Genesis GFC Fighters. The 2nd-gen GFC Fighters can win $GCOINS through Tournaments.
Based on the above table and the rarity of the Fighters, the daily issuance to the Genesis GFC Fighters will deplete the 60M Gaming Issuance Pool in 32 months. It is not clear how the team will manage the token issuance to the players once these 32 months are up. It also gives a lot of power to the Genesis GFC Fighter holders when it comes to influencing the token price. We have seen examples of such P2E-based structures being unsustainable over the long run.
Other players will need to buy the $GCOINs from the market and use them for the following purposes:
The sinks listed above do not seem strong enough to create demand for the token. There is also no mention of staking or governance mechanisms that might help to stabilize and give additional utility to the token.
Tokenomics & Sustainability: Score 2/5
All of the token issuance happens only for the Genesis Galaxy Fighters, making them disproportionately powerful in their ability to influence the token price, so a small amount of users will end up holding a large amount of tokens. This is balanced by the fact that F2P players can earn by selling Keys and Weapons to others. Tokens can influence player behavior, and the current tokenomics of $GCOIN leaves a lot on the table. Also, Apple will not make this process any easier, as it will force transactions between players to be done outside the app, thereby breaking the flow.
Summary: Average Score of 2.7/5
The main unique selling proposition of GFC is cross-IP collaboration in which owners of other NFT projects can utilize them in the game. This idea seems exciting, though its execution will be painstakingly difficult if GFC has to do the artwork for every single partner project in order for it to be compatible in the game. There are very few features that actually leverage this goal, making it more of an unproven acquisition strategy. The tokenomics also puts most of the power to influence the token price in the hands of the Genesis NFT holders, which could cause problems. In the end, most of the success here will depend on how the team is able to understand and execute the features that made Brawl Stars successful while abiding by the policies of the Apple Store.