In the convoluted domain of emerging Web3 applications, Play2Earn apps stand out because they reward successful players with tokens that can be exchanged for fiat money outside the game. A new, specific type of Play2Earn apps with the potential to bridge virtual and physical worlds are Move2Earn games.
STEPN is one of the first and major Move2Earn games. It is built on the Solana blockchain and requires users to run or walk outdoors to earn tokens, thereby rewarding people for living a healthier lifestyle. New users buy into the game with an initial investment. In return, the user receives an NFT in the form of a digital shoe and can start earning tokens by moving for a set amount of time per day. The business model of STEPN is based on a tax on all in-app activities.
Therefore, seeking to prevent players from cashing out, STEPN incentivizes reinvesting the earned money in new NFTs by offering the option to gradually extend the limit of tokens that can be earned per day.
Recently, however, hacking incidents and the downturn of crypto markets have led to a drastic devaluation of STEPN’s native currencies. Also, analysts have expressed concerns about the economic sustainability of STEPN’s Play2Earn concept. The most critical even describe STEPN as a fraudulent Ponzi scheme in which existing investors are paid with funds collected from new investors.
Rewarding people for physical activity with self-perpetuating Move2Earn games sounds intriguing. Whether the concept sounds too good to be true is hotly debated.
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