A lot of people are trying to run away from the truth these days – the internet proves it. It’s easy to show up confident and happy on social media, but not so much in real life. Recently, however, it is starting to show up on a new level. With the help of the metaverse, it becomes possible to travel to different virtual worlds and create an avatar to live a virtual life.
Even if everyone is talking about it now, it’s hard to answer what the metaverse really is. In this article, I will break down the history of the term and examine some of the most important use cases.
The metaverse is
There is no one definition of the term that is accepted by everyone. More often though, the event is described as a network of 3D virtual worlds aimed at social connection; a simulated digital space focused on creating a real-world-like environment for user interaction; a synonym for “cyberspace”, and so on. The term “Metavers” itself isn’t as new as it sounds. It was first created by Neal Stephenson in his 1992 science fiction novel Snow Crash. The book uses it to describe the dystopian future envisioned in a virtual reality world.
Even if the concept was introduced 30 years ago, it has only recently become a hot topic. Today, Metaverse is the hottest buzzword, especially in the technology, finance, and business industries. Who hasn’t heard of VR glasses, 3D avatars and virtual reality video games? Some of the best examples are a Second Life virtual reality platform launched in 2003 and video games such as Roblox and Warcraft.
But that’s not all. Have you noticed how many big technology giants have started focusing on the Metaverse concept in the last two years? For example, the news that Mark Zuckerberg changed Facebook’s corporate name to Meta late last year was widely discussed. The reason Metaverse has become so popular is that it has to be the heir to the Internet. Many compare the Metaverse at this point to late 20th century computers and cell phones. So here’s one thing that’s clear – Metaverse is just getting started, and it’s really hard to predict what will happen in the future.
However, there are already many Metaverse projects in different genres. Some of them present video games and virtual reality platforms with avatars as mentioned above; others are developing virtual spaces to broadcast concerts and sports games, art galleries, virtual properties, and more. It should also be mentioned that Metaverse is closely connected to crypto blockchain technology. NFTs are commonly used for purchasing virtual reality projects. Let’s take a look at some of the most important virtual worlds and see how they work.
As mentioned above, Second Life was one of the first virtual worlds to launch in 2003, but it is still considered one of the most popular Metaverse platforms. Linden Lab’s product quickly reached 1 million users worldwide. Residents of Second Life can create their own 3D avatars and live their lives in the virtual world, participating in a variety of activities, from entertainment to managing businesses and virtual assets. Even though many call the platform a video game, the creators claim it’s not because the characters don’t have a set mission.
Like Second Life, IMVU offers its users to create 3D avatars and enjoy life in the virtual world. The platform was founded in 2004 and now has over 100 million active users. The game starts with an empty virtual apartment that can be customized by players. IMVU stands for the sheer number of virtual objects available to users, which now numbers approximately 30 million objects.
Minecraft is a sandbox video game created by Mojang Studios and released in 2011. Although very simple, it is still one of the most popular games in the world with over 141 million active players. Minecraft encompasses many virtual worlds and gives complete creative freedom to its users.
The Sandbox Metaverse
Sandbox is a well-known NFT-based virtual world game. The alpha version of its Metaverse only came out late last year. The platform provides a virtual land that users can purchase and use for whatever they want, whether it’s a concert, sporting event, NFT gallery, or just a video game. It is possible to sell in-game creation using the SAND token. Many celebrities like Snoop Dogg have already invested heavily in the platform./p>
Decentraland is one of the newest and most popular 3D virtual world platforms to open to the public in 2020. Users can purchase land as NFTs and enjoy a variety of gaming activities. The platform has its own ETH-based cryptocurrency called MANA that can be used for internal purchases. The game is run by the non-profit Decentraland Foundation.
Somnium Space is a virtual reality world built on the Ethereum blockchain. The project is supported and fully managed by its strong community. Users can play, interact with each other as well as build and acquire virtual property, organize various space events. Game creatures can be monetized using its native currency.
Axie Infinity is an example of a game to capture video. Users will be able to collect and mint NFTs represented by creatures called Axies, raise them, and receive rewards for doing so. The Ethereum-based project recently surpassed $ 4 million in sales.
The growing popularity of the metaverse is indisputable, but what will actually come out of it is unpredictable. There has to be potential because many technology giants and offerings are placing a lot of hope and money in the metaverse. Could this really be the future of the Internet? And will it provide any benefit to mankind? That remains to be seen. But I hope people never get to the point where they want to spend more time in the virtual world than in the real world.