In our recent conversation with Benji, we covered the journey and future roadmap of CyBall, the onboarding process of the game, building for sustainability, and much more.
Web3 games are slowly moving away from Play-to-Earn due to the unsustainability of the model.
- Benji, Cyball's co-founder.
Here’s a recap for you!
CyBall is an NFT-based football card trading game wherein players form a team of their acquired NFT characters to defeat other players. The winner of the match is rewarded with CyBall’s native token CyBall Battery Token (CBT).
Benjii and his team began building CyBall in 2021. The game takes and improves upon elements pioneered by Axie Infinity. Similar to Axie, players in CyBall purchase three NFT characters, also known as CyBlocs, to participate in the game.
Players win a match in CyBall by defeating their opponents in various key events. The game randomly assigns key events such as shooting, dribbling, tackling, etc., which test the stats of the CyBlocs chosen by the player. If the skill level of a player’s Cybloc is greater than that of their opponent, they’ll win that particular key event. Although this dynamic has some element of luck included in the gameplay, this can be easily bypassed by leveling up your CyBlocs so that they perform better in almost every key event.
Cyball currently has a Play to Earn (P2E) economic model but the team now recognizes that the Web3 gaming ecosystem is slowly moving away from P2E as it is not sustainable.
Benji says that they are pivoting the game to a more win-to-earn model. The team is yet to iron out the details of this new economic model for CyBall, but they’re aiming to make the game more sustainable.
The basic economic loop: just like other play-to-earn titles, a player would need to win a match in CyBall to earn a token. Players can use their earned CBT to breed or mentor more CyBlocs.
CyBall will soon release their mutant series. Players will need CBT tokens to bid on this upcoming mutant serum that they can use to mutate their CyBloc. The mutant collection will be a limited series of CyBloc characters and skins. So Hodl UP your CBT tokens for the release and remember you first heard this alpha at Tegro. The mutant series will also introduce the CyBloc shop into the CyBall ecosystem.
CyBall’s Onboarding Process
Cyball has a three-step onboarding process.
- Players access the game through the official web app and create a new account.
- They will need a crypto wallet like Metamask or any other wallet that is supported by CyBall to create the account.
- After creating the account, players will be diverted to CyBall’s official NFT marketplace, where they can buy the three CyBlocs they’ll need to play the game. The player can also begin their journey into CyBall by borrowing the NFT character from the CyLoans feature of the game.
CyLoans allow players to get a taste of the game without committing an initial investment. Assets in CyLoans are leased out by existing players and CyBloc breeders who earn a share of the earnings a borrower makes with their assets. CyLoans is the guild feature for the game.
With the rise of Axie Infinity, a lot of guilds started popping up in the Web3 gaming market. But these organizations were facing problems with scaling. Everything had to be done manually, from creating an account for a player, creating a wallet, and distributing NFT to the players. It was a very tedious process that resulted in the waste of lots of time and effort. CyBall focused on streamlining the scholarship scalability process through CyLoans.
Chaining the CyBall
CyBall built their game on top of Binance’s Build and Build(BNB) Chain but has plans to expand to other networks like Solana. Interestingly, CyBall developers were initially looking to build the game on Ethereum but decided against it because of the high gas prices on the network. It’s a trend that we have seen a lot in this space, as high gas prices create a barrier to entry for many players. Speaking of barriers to entry, building only one chain also restricts adoption. To mend this, Cyball’s team is planning to gradually make it a multi-chain project. The team is currently in conversation with networks like Elrond, Avax, and Polygon, but nothing’s being committed as of yet.
Centralized vs. Decentralized
There are certain things that the developers decide to build on top of a blockchain and some on the centralized services. How does the Cyball team decide this?
Cyball was advised by Trung, the founder, and CEO of Axie Infinity, that it’s not ideal to have the game server on a chain as you open yourself up to many exploits. The team has adhered to that advice and kept their server off the chain. Other elements of the game, like in-game assets, are based on the BNB chain.
The Journey So Far and Future Plans
CyBall began its journey by conducting an ultra-successful Initial Game Offering last year. According to Benji, they observed $12 million in volume.
The alpha version of the game came out in January 2021, while the full game was launched on February 22nd, 2022. As of now, the game has scaled up to 22,000 daily active users.
The team released a new version called CyBALL Reborn in June 2022. The new update is a revamp of the basics of the game, including its UI and the backend.
The developers readjusted the backend to allow them to deliver features a lot faster. Benji says the team will now push out new features every four to six weeks. In the next month or so, the game will roll out what Benji calls some "hardcore gaming’ features, such as custom rooms.
Custom rooms will allow people to choose their opponents by entering an arena with them, instead of waiting for the game’s matchmaking system to randomly assign them their opponents.
The game intends to hold stadium sales by the end of this year as well. These will be virtual stadiums inside the CyBall metaverse.
As we said, CyBall is one of the OG play-to-earn games. Although it is facing some problems in the bear market,the game has some amazing things planned that we’re super excited about. If you liked what you read here, go play CyBall!