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South Korean tech firm NHN is developing crypto games and will use the Sui blockchain, NHN’s gaming division announced Thursday.
NHN has previously developed social casino games like Hangame Poker and mobile titles including Crusader’s Quest and Guns Up! Mobile War Strategy. The company claims that its games have over 37 million total users, according to an announcement.
Now, the firm plans to develop digital board games that leverage NFTs.
While the firm has yet to solidify exactly how it will add NFTs or crypto tokens into upcoming games, NHN’s Head of Business Development Jin Lee told Decrypt via email that the company is currently exploring ways that gamers can send items to each other as NFTs, as well as the possibility of crypto token rewards.
When asked why NHN is developing blockchain games, Lee said that crypto-powered games are a “paradigm shift.”
“The existing game industry has gone through several new paradigm shifts, from the era of game copy sales to PC games, console games, and social games—or from feature phone games to smartphone games,” Lee said.
“We want to create the best case in blockchain and games, by combining the value created by the contents of games and the economy of in-game currency with tokenomics,” Lee added.
Lee said that NHN chose Sui for its upcoming NFT and crypto games because it wants to build on a layer-1 blockchain—and Mysten Labs, the main developer behind Sui, immediately understood NHN’s long-term vision for crypto gaming.
“What excites me about building with NHN is what we’re beginning to refer to as ‘stickiness’ for users,” said Mysten Labs CEO and co-founder Evan Cheng, in a statement.
“It’s a code Web3, as a whole, has not managed to crack, with daily active users on the most popular chains barely topping 300K,” Cheng added. “At Mysten Labs, our mission is to bring the benefits of Web3 to the masses, by the billions. Creating products that actually attract user volume is our utmost priority.”
NHN joins the growing number of South Korean gaming firms that have embraced blockchain gaming, as studios like Krafton, Com2us, Wemade, Nexon, Neowiz, NCSoft, and OneUniverse are already building blockchain-powered games.
Compared to Western game studios, Asia more broadly is poised to eventually make up 80% of the crypto gaming player base, according to a DappRadar and Pacific Meta study published earlier this year.