Building a distributed application is not a task to be taken lightly. If the project serves no immediate purpose, users will flock to other offerings fairly quickly. Decentraland, while a very unique project, continues to attract a lot of users despite not having a “pressing” use case.
What is Decentraland About?
The designers of the Decentraland ecosystem always envisioned a world where Minecraft and the Sims would come together. Both of those video games have been inspirational and entertaining for generations of consumers. While they are also miles apart, there is something to be said for creating a crossover of sorts. Interestingly enough, the dApp developers decided to not use the existing licenses, but create something else entirely while still borrowing mechanics from both games.
The end result is an immersive virtual world which has an interesting graphical atmosphere. It looks very different from Minecraft, yet one can still see plenty of similarities as well. Decentraland is a blockchain-based venture that also allows users to monetize their creations in this virtual world. Combining that aspect with a sandbox environment, a social aspect, and custom avatars has resulted in one of the most popular dApps on the market today.
What is There to do?
Before users can engross themselves in the Decentraland universe, they will need to obtain a unit known as “LAND”. These units are sold for a fixed price, although some units will be put up for auction on a regular basis as well. Those players who aren’t sure if they will stick around for long also have an option to rent LAND for a period of time. At this time, there are still plenty of LAND units available, but that availability will reduce as the project continues to grow and evolve.
Once a user has decided to purchase LAND, they can see it on the virtual world map. Location is crucial in any game with a sandbox environment, and Decentraland attempts to highlight that aspect whenever possible. After purchasing a property, users can then build scenes for the parcel they own. Items and objects can be created through a 3D model editor. Any items created by the user themselves can be traded or sold to other players over the Ethereum blockchain.
Albeit it may sound daunting to work with a 3D model editor, Decentraland ensures everyone can enjoy the experience to the fullest. There is plenty of online documentation to provide valuable insights in this regard.
Those who genuinely do not like to build objects can opt for an exploratory experience. Decentraland lets users create a custom avatar, which can then be used to venture into the virtual world at one’s leisure. There are numerous events to keep community members engaged. Even if one doesn’t like to build, they can still help shape the future of this virtual world.
The Future is up to Players
As is customary in the world of decentralized and distributed projects, players are not just the audience. They are also the decision-makers in terms of future features, growth, and so forth. Decentraland players will be able to weigh in on key decisions regarding the virtual world and the future of the project as a whole. That includes voting on whether there should be more land parcels for novice users, or even when the next auction should take place.
The MANA Token
A project on the scale of Decentraland has its own currency, known as MANA. This token is what allows users to obtain LAND units in the game – either by directly purchasing units or scooping them up at auction. The MANA token is an ERC20 token that is burned in order to claim LAND units. Additionally, it is also the currency to buy in-world goods and services. Obtaining MANA can be done through dozens of cryptocurrency exchanges, including OKEx, Binance, Exrates, and Huobi Global.
Images courtesy of Decentraland