Last year Facebook changed its name to Meta and expressed its interest in taking on the metaverse, bringing the concept of cyberspace, where you can relax, hang out, work, and meet new people, to a new generation of internet users. Mark Zuckerburg, CEO of Facebook (now Meta), expresses that ‘the metaverse’ is the future of the internet. But, what does it actually mean?
The metaverse is a vague term and has a broad definition. It’s is another name for cyberspace, which feels and sounds infinitely more extensive and more expansive than one might think. The technologies that make up the metaverse are known to include virtual worlds and virtual realities and, in more recent years, have begun including augmented realities.
However, it’s primarily associated with the virtual world. A virtual world is a computer-simulated environment filled with users who make their own personal avatars to explore the 3D world around them. Avatars can explore virtual space, participate in activities, and communicate with other users. In addition, most virtual worlds have their own economy and geography.
Many games, particularly, MMORPGs can be seen as part of the virtual world. However, many argue that the virtual world is separate and depends on the degree of immediacy present. Most notably, the metaverse concept has existed for many years and has come to be associated with Second Life’s virtual worlds, created in 2003, VRChat in 2017, and Epic Games’ Fortnite.
As NFTs and other cryptocurrencies become a mainstay in modern society, projects didn’t take long to involve the Metaverse. In 2022, there will be several cryptocurrency and blockchain projects, some of which started in 2020. For example, Decentraland runs on the Ethereum blockchain and allows users to explore, create, and share using NFT technology.
In addition, Axie Infinity is a 2D world inspired by the Pokemon universe and shares with its inspiration. You can breed and share monsters called Axies and use them to battle other players in the game. While doing this, users can earn cryptocurrency.
A user-generated game closely similar to Minecraft, The Sandbox is a fully-fledged metaverse. Users are free to explore, buy land, develop, create, and trade assets with other players. It’s also a game that is partnered with NFTs, which its creator wants to explore the idea of asset sharing a little more as a way of rewarding players.
Sin City allows players to explore its world while battling rival gangs, forming factions, acquiring assets, and purchasing real estate. The central idea for Sin city is a world where you can build an empire while having the option to become involved in the world’s economy. Sin City is set to launch its beta in some time in 2022.
While the metaverse is back in the news due to Meta, its been around for many years, and there is a wide variety of projects being developed with the metaverse. Whatever Meta is planning to bring to the table will just be another space to explore.