Crypto Game Developer says F&#% ‘Play-to-Earn’ — Here’s Why…

6 min readOct 7, 2022


A coworker asked me to answer a question on Play-to-Earn gaming. It was supposed to just be a couple sentences. My bad…

What’s your opinion on the current bad reputation of play-to-earn games?

I can only answer this question from the standpoint of someone who has been gaming for almost 30 years. I am from the era of Atari and Nintendo NES. I was introduced to Super Mario at four years old and I cannot recall a time when gaming was not a part of my life.

Do you want to know my opinion on the bad reputation of play-to-earn games? My opinion is that the bad reputation is well-deserved. Play-to-earn is a blanket term used by projects to suck in the Finance people. The people who love the profits they made from crypto, or heard about their friends who made “big money!” in this new blockchain technology. These projects want to give you the impression that just by sitting at home and playing their games, you too can make a ton of money while relaxing and having fun.

I am sorry to tell you, that is not how life works.

Let’s break this down into several parts:

Let’s talk about the modern day gaming landscape without blockchain mechanics. Is there a game on the market that exists outside the world of crypto that pays its players to play? Is there any game where you can make “life-changing” money? I can only think of a handful of instances where you might be able to make this argument:

  1. Games that require you to grind for a ridiculous amount of time to acquire some in-game item that you can turn around and sell to other players who do not want to spend a long amount of time to get it. These games are typically categorized as triple-A (or AAA) games and this is important because typically, AAA games develop gamer communities that love the game itself so much that it creates value for these items.
  2. The other way for gaming to be profitable is to be a professional E-Sport player and be one of the very best players to ever play the game and earn money through sponsorships or corporate teams and get paid to compete in live events. This option is not available to the average gamer.
  3. Or finally, become a streamer and play games live in front of audiences. However, streamers are not paid for by the game. They are paid through ad revenue, merchandising, donations, etc.

So where would it make sense for anyone to believe that the game company who had to pay for the development of a game, pay salaries to the programmers, the 2D/3D artists, the light mappers, the level designers, the UI artists, the backend devs, the modelers, and everyone else it takes to make a game would all of a sudden have tons of extra money to pay all of its players? Where does that money come from? Is there some endless pool of funds that only game developers can tap into? No.

Play-to-earn games have all promised this to people and as a crypto game developer, I see it every day. The entitlement and “gimme” mentality of people looking for play-to-earn games not because they care about technology or gaming, but because they want to make fast, easy money.

Traditional video game companies don’t want their players to be able to have an economic system that does not in some way benefit the original game developers. Why would they? They deserve the revenue generated because of the game and surrounding the game.

So why as a game developer would I want gaming and the blockchain to mix?

Because as a gamer, I side with the players. I know what it is like to play and love a game for a couple of years and then finally get bored and stop playing. I spent three years in League of Legends, paying $10 every couple of months when some new cosmetic came out solely for the purpose to show off to my friends. When I was ready to move on, I left an account and an inventory with about $400 of actual skins that I paid for over time, and that money is forever lost to me. What if I could sell those skins directly on a marketplace to other players who still love the game and want to own them or collect them? What if those skins are currently considered more sought-after and more valuable? What if I could take that money and get new video games?! Or just pocket it and buy Mom something for Mother’s Day? This is what I believe this technology could be. And more!

What if blockchain game developers collaborated on things? What if I could play one game and win some item that exists in a completely different game? What if I had an NFT that could provide me with something extra not just in the game I bought it for, but for other games that participate in this collaboration?

I believe this type of system is what play-to-earn should bring to mind. This could be the beginning of players taking their power back.

No one says video games don’t deserve to make money, but as a player who might sink money into your game because I love it that much, when I leave, I’d love to be able to take something with me!

I believe there is plenty of utility in the blockchain as it relates to gaming and I think we all need to see beyond the obvious rugpull projects and shit play-to-earn systems and look at things from the perspective of the actual target audience! The gamers, not the moonboys.

The games need to be fun, and worthy of their own cult followings and communities! They need to mimic what we see in the traditional gaming industry. Fun, competitive, cute, adventurous, sporty! I don’t want the player who just wants to make a couple of bucks. I want the player who will practice for 100 hours because he wants to kick his friends’ ass after work! I want the players who sit on Discord talking trash to one another as they battle to be the greatest. I want the players who feel a sense of brotherhood when they share the same team colors and run through a field of bullets to destroy their opposition! I also want the players who play to relax, or who pull up their mobile games to pass the time. The key takeaway is that I want players.

A game is a game, and a job is a job. Your job should not be your game, because then you aren’t playing.

These types of players will cherish their NFTs. They will love their in-game cosmetics. And when they want to leave, they take it with them. To collect forever. To sell to the next wave of incoming players. To do whatever it is they want to do with their assets. A system built for the right reasons and by the right people. There is an economical system that benefits everyone if everyone is realistic about their expectations. And who knows? Maybe that sword you got in that one DexiKnights game is now worth $10,000 and you bought it for $20 because they only made 10 of them. Everyone wins. The project, the token, and the player.

Play-to-earn was done all wrong. We’re here to try to do it right. Dexioprotocol is the future I want to see as a gamer. And as a game developer, I know how to get us there. Crypto technology can do a lot for the world, but I don’t want to just work for the token, I want to work for my brothers and sisters who stay up late gaming with their friends just like me.

DexiKnights, available through now
Opinion Piece by Dexioprotocol Chief Game Developer, Ovi Sanz




A gaming, augmented reality, and technology company creating a platform for innovation and advertising, on and off the blockchain.