Axie Infinity, a play-to-earn gaming model which uses blockchain technology to reward players, found its footing in the Philippines despite not being made by Filipinos.
According to Luis Buenaventura, Youth Guild Games (YGG) country manager for Philippines, Axie Infinity, which can be played using Android phones, iPhones and PC, is now becoming a popular play-to-earn model in the country although it was created by a Vietnamese firm. This new innovation in gaming, which uses non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to join the ecosystem, allows players to earn real money by playing games.
“It’s pretty darn big right now. There are about 1.9-million active players of Axie Infinity on any given day globally. Half of these people are Pinoys and the biggest Axie community is in Nueva Ecija,” said Buenaventura.
Other local places where play-to-earn gaming is becoming popular include Cebu, Batangas, Negros Occidental and other provinces in the country, prompting the exponential growth of play-to-earn communities. One such community is the Filipino-led gaming guild YGG which pools investor funds to purchase yield-generating NFTs, and leverages players’ time and effort to optimize its community-owned assets for maximum utility and return.
For those who are interested to participate in Axie Infinity, the capital requirement is estimated at PhP35,000, which is subject to change as the amount is denominated in cryptocurrency. To get started, a player needs the following: Metamask wallet, Robin wallet, ethereum, and need to buy three Axies to create a team.
Buenaventura notes that if players want to play on a daily basis for a couple of hours, they can probably make about PhP12,000 a month. “These rewards are in the form of in-game cryptocurrency which they can accumulate and at some point, they can cash out into pesos, They can cash out directly on their Union Bank account, and GCash account. They can use any regulated licensed cryptocurrency exchange in the Philippines.”
There are about 800,000 to 900,000 Filipinos playing the Axie Infinity. The number is growing due to the gaming guild’s scholarship program which involves lending the recruited “scholars” NFTs so they can start playing and earning without any upfront costs.
In YGG, in-game rewards are shared among scholars, managers, and the guild, with scholars taking the largest share at 70% and managers receiving 20%. This ensures that 90% of earnings go back to the community, with only 10% going back to YGG to sustain the business model and help more scholars. To date, YGG has over 4,700 scholars worldwide, 52% of which are residing in the Philippines.
“Anyone can be a scholar, as long as you have an Internet connection, a mobile phone or a computer that can support the game, and time to play,” said Buenaventura.