Move-to-Earn blockchain games emerged is the combination of GameFi elements and Fitness Applications. Users that were previously stagnant in their homes were promptly incentivized to pursue healthy habits to earn in-game rewards from the Fitness finance apps. What is Move-to-Earn and how did it come to rise?
The “Move-to-Earn” phenomenon was the hottest GameFi trend within the early months of 2022 and towards the end of 2021. Both gamers looking to earn and fitness enthusiasts came in droves trying out the top “FitFi”(FitnessFinance) applications like StepN, Genopets, and dotmoovs.
The first M2E game, Genopets, generated as much as $8.3 million in funding last October while the Solana-based Web3 fitness App, StepN, gained 2 to 3 million users worldwide since its launch. StepN quickly became a household name in the GameFi space after its market cap sat roughly at $860 million at its peak in May 2022.
Move to earn attempts to “gamify” people’s fitness routines by allowing users to earn while performing mundane exercises like running. It’s the mixture of the GameFi and Fitness App industry that promotes a healthy lifestyle by rewarding its users with digital token rewards.
The tokens players earn can be exchanged for crypto and fiat in exchange or converted into another in-game digital asset. These apps use GPS that utilizes geolocation data to determine how far players run and with the help of blockchain technology, build an in-game economy that provides rewards when people exercise.
Clearly, the inspiration for M2E was derived from the success of the iconic mobile game Pokemon GO, a game that also utilized the GPS of the smartphone and camera. Like M2E, the iconic application incentivized people to step outside and do outdoor physical activities for in-game rewards.
StepN was arguably the most popular Move-to-Earn application on the market. Despite it not being the first, StepN received strong numbers when the game was released in December 2021. The application gained as many as 300,000 daily active users in just a few months. It has even currently accumulated roughly 650,000 Twitter followers.
StepN’s token price enjoyed an ATH(All-time-high) of up to $4.11 at its peak in April of this year. The massive influx of players greatly contributed to the rally of its native token, inviting even more players to try out the new GameFi genre.
Additionally, M2E and StepN received concerns about unsustainability in their tokenomics. At the time of this writing, $GMT is down 87% from its ATH. This has prompted users who rely on StepN for its attractive ROI(Return-on-Investment) to view it as less attractive, leading some players to progressively lose interest. A phenomenon that’s similarly happening with users of the Play-to-Earn genre.
After a suffocating Q2 for Move-to-Earn, M2E shows no sign of slowing down. New alternatives are emerging from the markets like the Near-based app, Sweat Economy, which minted 10,000 NFTs recently while certain M2E applications are flourishing in this bear market. In the Metaverse, OliveX collaborated with The Sandbox to develop a fitness Metaverse.
As they say, the bear market is the time for building. Considering its initial and continued success, it’s safe to say that we will be expecting more iterations and applications of the Move-to-Earn genre.
Edmond is a passionate writer for Videogames, GameFi and Web3. He has a worked for top GameFi companies and videogame/crypto news websites.