Move-to-Earn Protocols — VegaX Research Report

What is Move-to-Earn?

Digital currencies and NFTs are moving forward at an astronomical rate. From ‘DeFi Summer’ in 2020 to the NFTs and Metaverse craze in 2021 — it has been a journey. Move to earn is the latest trend that everyone has been talking about in 2022. As the name suggests, Move-to-Earn protocols reward users to walk, run, dance, or simply just move around. Players earn passive income in the form of that protocol’s native token, which can be exchanged for other digital assets or fiat money.

According to multiple psychological research papers, gamification of real-life activities is an excellent way to boost motivation because it taps into the brain’s own natural wiring. Games contain the natural reward compulsion loop, which is exactly what Move-to-earn taps into. Even established companies use this gamification phenomenon for their marketing techniques. For example, Nike+ runs a simpler version of the Move-to-Earn concept wherein the app tracks the running statistics and measures the progress towards a set goal of the user, hooks it up to their social media where people can compete with their friends, hence creating a sense of competitiveness among users.

Another simple psychological play that Move-to-Earn protocols tap into is that of Maps. People love to know where they are on the journey. There is a reason why games like Mario and Zelda show maps, people like to know how far the finish line is. In short, gamifying real-world applications triggers a dopamine rush. Gaining rewards, self-affirmation, competition, leveling up — all these aspects give a rush to the human brain. It’s not a coincidence that people get addicted to playing games.

Blockchain technology makes it possible for people to earn a living from these games; this was demonstrated by the Play-to-Earn model of Axie Infinity wherein people earn passive income by playing tactical battles in a metaverse designed by the team, and by trading NFTs on their platform.

This is not the first time an application has incentivized users to go out of their houses. Six years ago Pokemon GO used augmented reality by using smartphone GPS and incentivized users to move out of their houses and collect virtual Pokemons that were scattered across a real-life map of the world. This AR concept, combined with the Play-to-Earn idea used by popular blockchain games such as Axie Infinity, is what makes Move-to-Earn revolutionary. In fact, Move-to-Earn is not even a new idea. Lympo, a Move-to-Earn game, has been around for a couple of years and pays users in LYM tokens for leading an active lifestyle, it’s only in 2022 that this idea has gained popularity.

Let’s review some of the most popular Move-to-Earn games.

1. Stepn

Stepn is the most popular Move-to-Earn game yet and is built on the Solana Blockchain by the developer FindSatoshi Lab. Stepn is an application that rewards users to run, walk or jog in the form of their native currency called the Green Satoshi Token or GST. These GST tokens are credited to the user’s in-game wallet or can be imported externally with the help of multiple exchanges like Coinbase and FTX. To earn in Stepn, players need to buy one of four types of NFT sneakers — namely Walker, Jogger, Runner, or Trainer, each consisting of different attributes that affect the rewards that they earn. There are 9999 total Stepn NFTs. Stepn also has a second token which is the Green Metaverse Token or the GMT token which is a governance token. This token can be bought on secondary exchanges or can be earned by the user’s sneaker NFTs at level 30 or above. The total supply of the GST token is unlimited, and the total supply of the GMT is capped at 6 billion.

Apart from buying the NFT from a marketplace, users also have the option of renting these from another user in return for a share of the revenue generated while moving around. In order to boost their rewards, players have the option to upgrade their sneakers by leveling up one or more of five different attributes.

These attributes are Resilience (slows down diminishing returns by decreasing wear and tear), Luck (increases the chance of random prices), Comfort (increases the intake of another token GMT), Efficiency (increases GST made per energy spent), and Energy (Time allocated to a player to earn while moving).

2. StepApp

StepApp or FitFi is a Move-to-Earn project that is built on the Avalanche ecosystem that rewards users for walking and running. StepApp has taken a huge chunk of its inspiration from Stepn with respect to the way that it works. In StepApp users stake upgradable NFTs namely ‘Sneaks’ that people need to equip to start earning. The platform’s reward token is called KCAL which can be used to buy Sneak NFTs. The app allows players to compete globally in a variety of ways. StepApp’s governance token is known as the FitFi token used to govern different aspects such as buy-backs, burn rates, revenue splits and more. These FitFi tokens cannot be earned and can only be bought through secondary exchanges. 50% of the platform’s income is used to buy-back FitFi tokens.

The step app protocol also allows users to build on its Step metaverse rather than just play. FitFi’s ready-to-deploy geospatial technology, NFT minting structure, token mechanics, and user interface can be easily deployed by developers.

3. Genopets

Genopets is the world’s first Free-to-Play, Move-to-Earn NFT game that is built on the Solana Blockchain that incentivizes players to move around. The platform gives users’ a gamified experience through nurturing, evolving, and battling digital creatures known as Genopets which can be traded on secondary markets. The more powerful a Genopet is, the more earning potential it has. Genopets act as a digital avatar for the users, and moving around in real life improves the Genopet’s attributes and appearance, leading them into the Genoverse.

Just like most of the other Move-to-Earn games, Genopets is structured as a two-token economy. The first is the GENE token which is the platform’s governance token and is available on a variety of Solana-based exchanges such as Raydium and Serum. The second token is the KI token which is the platform’s in-game currency that is provided as a reward for participating in the Genoverse and to purchase habitats and crystals for the Genopets to improve their attributes

4. Dotmoovs

Dotmoovs is a Peer-to-Peer application that uses AI technology that allows users to earn while recording and sharing their physical activity via their mobile phones. The platform works around its native MOOV token which is built on the Ethereum blockchain and is used to reward users. Users can utilize the MOOV token by competing against other players, taking part in challenges and practice, or they can utilize it to trade or rent NFTs and stake MOOV to earn rewards.

Players don’t necessarily have to own the NFTs to take part in challenges with the help of the platform’s NFT renting system which means that people who don’t want to spend money buying an NFT can rent one of the available ones and start playing. This is done in return for a profit share with the player who owns the actual NFT.

Is Move-to-Earn Worth It?

If motivation is what you require to start working out then these Move-to-Earn games could be the right catalyst for you. And if working out is part of your daily lifestyle these games could become an added advantage for your routine as many of them have no additional cost to participate.

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