How Africa can lead the Blockchain Gaming revolution
In Africa, video gaming has often been perceived as a waste of time and a sure path to mediocrity. Due to this, African gamers only had access to these games in gaming joints, barbershops, and cybercafes.
However, in the last five years, video gaming has continually evolved as more Africans become active in the gaming space. Now, gamers can easily access games on their mobile phones and computers.
The Coronavirus pandemic aided the adoption of this hobby as it kept many people locked indoors, and made gaming one of the most preferred and accessible activities to maintain connection and keep boredom at bay.
Currently, the progress has moved from consoles to smartphones with Africa’s increasing tech-savvy youths in this multi-million dollar gaming industry. Combined with the increasing adoption of digital currencies and blockchain technology, Africa is set to lead the blockchain gaming revolution.
In this article, we explore Africa’s progress with blockchain gaming and how the continent can leverage NFTs and our recently launched gaming initiative, Initial Game Offering (IGO), which features core in-game assets, to lead this revolution.
Developers creating African themed games
In 2022, with statistics from World Bank and the African Development Bank reporting 650 million mobile phone users in Africa, smartphones are now the main devices for playing video games, constituting 95 percent of the gamers’ population.
So, you can now play your favorite games on almost any smartphone model, any time, with even localized African features including characters and assets.
Developers are including new elements like ownership (allowing gamers to own characters and assets within the games) to leverage blockchain technology.
A Social Impact gaming company based in Kenya, Usiku Games Africa, is pioneering the new age of blockchain gaming in the country so that the tech-savvy youths may soon begin to profit as the gaming industry continues to grow.
Now, with the introduction of GameFi - a new direction in the crypto world that merges the best parts of gaming and decentralized finance - players engage with the game, and in return, receive NFT and cryptocurrency rewards they can cash out for profit.
So, the more you play, the more rewards you get.
You can get your profits on platforms like Binance Play-to-Earn in the decentralized world by buying and selling in-game NFTs or playing to earn in-game cryptocurrencies. In the first case, the players create and sell unique in-game NFT items to other players on a marketplace for crypto or fiat. While in the second case, players are rewarded with in-game crypto assets that can be used to buy more in-game content or exchanged for fiat and other digital currencies.
Developers consider blockchain-based games
As cryptocurrency adoption goes mainstream, the growth of blockchain gaming in the continent is inevitable.
According to a recent survey, thirty-eight percent of the 41.9 million of the world’s crypto holding gamers (aged between 21 and 38) are the reason behind the increasing interest for trading in gaming, utilizing crypto and digital currency.
Now, cryptocurrency has tremendous prospective to get involved in the game sector. And it was reported that 80 percent of gamers with blockchain wallets are willing to purchase gaming tokens with their digital currencies.
While a total of 5.9 million gamers own cryptocurrencies across Africa and the Middle East, Africa's numbers could skyrocket since the continent is expected to have the biggest youth population by 2050.
African game developers have opted to look at incorporating new technologies into the games they offer, such as allowing players to use bitcoin and blockchain technology while playing. Indeed, this has resulted from the continent's ongoing increase in the number of tech-savvy individuals, and it may allow participants to profit financially from the surge.
Now, with Binance play-to-earn, every gamer can monetize their playing time via buying and selling in-game NFTs or completing objectives in exchange for cryptocurrency rewards. You can go through our guide on getting crypto and NFTs via play-to-earn to learn more.
Players can also trade their hard-earned tokens on cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance to earn even more. NFT-based games that have their native token include My Neighbor Alice (ALICE), The Sandbox (SAND), MOBOX (MBOX), etc.
Africa’s progress so far
The gaming industry's expansion is increasingly on an upward trend. Over the last five years, the number of video gamers on the continent has more than doubled with South Africa taking the lead.
In a 2021 study commissioned by games analytics company Newzoo and Carry 1st - a South African gaming platform – it is shown that the number of gamers has risen to 186 million people from 77 million in 2015 in Sub-Saharan Africa.
South Africa leads the continent with 24 million gamers, accounting for 40 percent of its population, followed by Ghana with 27 percent in second place, and Nigeria with 23 percent in third place.
Kenya and Ethiopia are the continent's fourth and fifth largest gaming markets, with 22 percent and 13 percent of their populations participating in gaming, respectively.
It was also observed that the majority of the playing population (95 percent) are mobile gamers, with the Covid-19 pandemic and increased digitization across Africa cited as the primary reasons.
Cryptocurrency adoption and gaming in Africa
Currently, 63 million out of the 186 million players, pay for games with these African figures expected to be the fastest-growing in the world as the continent begins to accept digital currencies.
With Global crypto gaming valued at 321 million US dollars in 2020, 80 percent of gamers with crypto accounts are willing to use digital currency for gaming purchases, with 67 percent longing for a chance to use cryptocurrency in gaming.
Following the debut of Africa's first Central Bank-backed digital currency, the e-Naira, in 2021, Nigeria has jumped ahead of its African rivals in cryptocurrency adoption.
And although Kenya has yet to develop its regulated digital currency, it leads the globe in peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange.
South Africa is now in the testing stage of its Dunbar project, to facilitate cross-border payments with Mauritius while moving closer to the development stage.
Ghana appears to be considering implementing regulations for digital currency in the future, with the African country, along with Tunisia, Morocco, and a few other countries, still researching the idea of digital currencies.
The NFT gaming space will continue to grow and become more widely adopted. And that is why Binance NFT is pioneering Play-to-Earn gaming, with a comprehensive collection of high-quality gaming drops and our Initial Game Offering (IGO) platform for emerging NFT gaming projects. So, if you’re looking for a quick way to start your NFT gaming adventures, you can begin by browsing our available collections.
Also, if you want to stay up to date on all things NFT gaming, make sure to follow Binance NFT on Twitter and Telegram. You can check out our weekly IGO drops or exclusive Mystery Box launches. For the crypto users looking to get started in NFT gaming, you’ll find all the tokens available for purchase on Binance.