The Sandbox, the French metaverse that brands snap

As one of the figureheads in the metaverse, Sandbox has attracted the attention of many companies who want their own space in this virtual universe. Picture.

Founded in 2011 by Frenchmen Arthur Madrid and Sébastien Borget, The Sandbox is not always a 3D world involving blockchain and NFTs. If the first version is already a success, the turnaround in the metaverse and these technologies begins a meteoric rise for the company.

Initially, a 2D game on PC and mobile

The title, The Sandbox, refers to the very genre of the game at its beginning: the “sandbox”, which is to say that the player has access to resources to do what he wants in the game and share their creations with others. . Another well-known example of a sandbox game is the ultra-popular Minecraft. In The Sandbox, players can create small 2D universes and games thanks to the many decorative elements and characters already involved. The success has resonated: since 2011, the franchise has reached 40 million downloads and more than 70 million creations.

What started Sandbox’s move into the metaverse was to announce the huge investment in Meta in this parallel universe, but also and above all to take it to Hong Kong-based company Animoca Brands, which specializes in blockchain. In an interview for Forbes, Sébastien Borget explained the reason for this change: “We realize it’s hard to save a player time by just banking on the promise of recognizing creators. In addition, we don’t have a technical way of sharing a portion of the revenue from the content created. […] In 2017, we discovered the blockchain used in the CryptoKitties game, which allows products to be purchased using NFTs. That’s why we tested this technology to allow our creators to monetize the content they create. »

Virtual experiences without having to know how to code

In concrete, Sandbox now provides many tools for creating 3D virtual objects and experiences without the need to know how to code: VoxEdit, create objects, and Game Maker which, as its name suggests, allows the creation of games for free. Items can be sold as NFTs in the Marketplace. If The Sandbox works thanks to the Ethereum blockchain, it also has its own tokens that can be purchased on the platform: the Sands.

A new showcase for brands

In 2022, The Sandbox will therefore look like a vast 3D world where users will not only be able to enjoy virtual experiences – Gartner predicts that 25% of people will spend at least an hour a day in the metaverse by 2026 -, but also buy or rent virtual real. land using cryptocurrency to do whatever they want with it, including monetizing the content they create on the platform using NFTs. An opportunity that more than 200 brands want to get: Warner Music, for example, has formed a partnership for a music amusement park and Adidas, which has bought 1.6 million euros of virtual land on the platform, offering NFT accessories. Other initiatives are less appropriate, such as buying spaces at supermarkets like Carrefour or with insurers.

In early March, during the launch of the second alpha season, The Sandbox announced that it had surpassed two million registered users. It’s not impossible that most just log in every now and then out of curiosity, but the platform has 18,500 landowners who have purchased a total of 166,464 plots, knowing that a plot of initially cost about 10 000 dollars. It is estimated that approximately 70% of The Sandbox designs have been sold. And prices are already starting to rise according to its neighbors: the land next to rapper Snoop Dogg’s virtual mansion is valued at more than $ 400,000. Unbelievable but true.

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