With a Netflix-like interface and over 2,600 aggregated games, Earn Alliance aims to streamline the task of discovering crypto and NFT games from across all chains. And with a new feature launching Tuesday, the startup wants to help traditional gamers make the leap into the space

The promise of crypto token rewards doesn’t hurt, either.

Today, Earn Alliance is launching a feature that lets gamers connect their accounts at the two major PC gaming marketplaces—Steam and Epic Games Store—as well as the gaming chat app Discord. It’s designed to help players find crypto games that align with their interests, all while helping developers find players who might be more inclined to play their particular game.

The crypto gaming space is relatively tiny compared to the broader “Web2” gaming market. While on-chain data is a key aspect of most blockchain applications, Earn Alliance founder Joseph Cooper—a veteran game developer and serial entrepreneur—believes that there’s so much useful off-chain data that isn’t being used to help market and target crypto games.

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“We wanted to get game data in a nice way,” he told Decrypt’s GG. “We don't want to just take your data—we want to pay you in tokens, to exchange it.”

Connecting your PC gaming accounts might tell Earn Alliance that you’re really into first-person shooters or role-playing games, for example. That helps game developers (who pay the firm) better target players, and ideally it gives you a more appealing selection of game suggestions.

On top of that, it also gets you into the Earn Alliance airdrop. Taking a cue from leading NFT marketplace Blur, Earn Alliance is handing out care package-style drops based on your gaming history and how you interact with games on the platform. Starting on March 28, users will be able to open up those drops and claim ALLY tokens when the airdrop formally begins.

And there’s incentive to do more than just plug in your accounts and then disappear for the next month. Each care package can be enhanced with “upgrade tickets” for interacting with games on Earn Alliance, completing daily quests around the games, and participating in promotions along the way. Referring other users also helps boost your airdrop allocation.

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In other words, it’ll pay to play when it comes to the ALLY token airdrop. Cooper said that leaning into a referral system reminds him of the Facebook gaming days where players could pull in their friends to unlock benefits. He sees that model thriving in the Web3 world.

“I actually look at this era as a repeat of the Facebook web era,” he said, “in that we're going to see a huge referral system—and you're going to be getting crypto for referring.”

Earn Alliance says that it has already onboarded more than 400,000 players, but with the latest feature additions, the discovery platform is clearly aiming for an even broader market. Many games have been resistant to crypto games, citing reasons from meager quality to hassles around blockchain tech, as well as a prevalence of scams around the crypto industry.

Scams and “rug pulls” haven’t been eradicated yet, but the tech is gradually getting easier to use—and the games are getting better and better. Games take a long time to build well, but recent standouts like Pixels and Shrapnel are showing the way forward.

Cooper knows the feeling well, as his team is also co-developing the blockchain zombie survival game Last Remains on the Epic Games Store. He first started making video game modes as a child and later worked professionally as a game developer and online casino co-founder.

He got into blockchain games with Axie Infinity in 2021, which provided a crash course on the ups and downs of this space. He saw the potential value of user asset ownership, but also how thin gameplay and an unbalanced economy can cut short a surging phenomenon.

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Since then, at Earn Alliance, he’s seen the crypto gaming space mature and evolve—and aims to help those creators find their audiences as more and more quality games emerge.

“Now, there’s adoption of game designers who are more curious about this space,” he said, “and we're gonna see some better games in the next few months here.”

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