Players as Economic Agents
Economy games are considered fun, but economics as a subject is rarely described as such. One explanation is that economics is focused on the science of optimizing outcomes and predictions of behavior; while economy games are centered on being in an economy and acting within it.
Similar to how the thrill of a sport is often found in the playing of it, rather than studying theory, the thrill of the economy comes from being an economic actor.
The game economy of Genopets will expand on this concept by tokenizing in-game assets and doubling down on player agency. Within the Genoverse, players will be more than actors transacting within a closed system; they will have unprecedented levels of economic agency within the game. The tokenized nature of in-game assets will allow players to exercise greater levels of autonomy over everything from pets and habitats, to the very items that can be created, bought, and sold within the game.
First and foremost, all Habitats (the fundamental “means of production” within the Genoverse) will be in the hands of the players. In traditional gaming, the developers typically retain full control over the means of production: all in-game assets flow from this centralized source. This allows developers to set prices and generate predictable revenue. All resulting economic activity involving these assets (player trading, renting, gifting, etc.) usually takes place within a closed system, where assets are exchanged for other assets with no net change in financial value (in fiat terms).
With Genopets, the developers will intentionally release this capability in a controlled manner into the hands of player-creators, who will have invested in the growth of the Genopets economy via the purchase or Terraforming (crafting) of Habitats. Among other uses, Habitats allow players to unlock premium gameplay features–such as crafting and Ki harvesting–and spawn crafting recipe components (unrefined Crystals). Only an existing Habitat can produce a new Habitat.
The crafting of a Genesis Habitat (first generation of Habitats ever) required extensive engagement via a multi-week treasure hunt promotion in order to procure some of the components; plus possession of another NFT asset (Terraform Seed), contribution to the GENE Treasury, and a marginal amount of SOL for transaction fees. In addition to these, a number of Habitats will be sold to organizational partners (e.g., guilds), who can use them to immediately create value for themselves and the economy. Possessing a Habitat is necessary to produce new Habitats. Ultimately, even the decision to increase the supply of the means of production will be in the hands of (Habitat-holding) players.
This is the foundation of the Genopets player created economy.
By refining crystals and crafting items, Habitat holders will serve as the decentralized supply side of the Genopets virtual economy. On the other side of this virtuous cycle will be the non-Habitat-holding playerbase, consisting of those who prefer to play largely for free, but will want to improve, customize, or otherwise expedite aspects of their gamified fitness experience via paid content. This play-enhancing, paid content will be in the form of tokenized items or augments within the game, including assets like crystals, which have already been released. This demand for craftable, in-game goods will set prices and establish equilibrium within the marketplace.