NFT Mania Peaked in March But Play-to-Earn Games Leading the Market Now; Accelerating Mainstream Mass Adoption

With the gamification of DeFi or GameFi “higher than ever,” the popular NFT game Axie Infinity is reaching the masses and earning a record $12.2 million in revenue in just the first five days of July.

The cryptocurrency market seems to be feeling some excitement again.

As Delphi Digital noted, DeFi is roaring, Axie Infinity is soaring, and NFTs are no longer boring.

The current cheapest price for CryptoPunk is $41,700, which shows that there is still demand for NFTs.

According to Dapp Radar’s June report, the sales of non-fungible tokens (NFT) hit $2.47 billion in the first half of 2021, showing “signs of mass adoption.”

Popular collections and marketplaces like NBA Top Shot and Rarible are seeing a cooldown, but it has been replaced by Ethereum’s new set of NFTs like Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and VeeFriends.

New ways of yielding extra value from NFTs are already in place, with virtual lands and in-game items helping the NFT market back on track. Play-to-earn games like Ronin’s Axie Infinity and WAX’s Alien Worlds have onboarded over 250,000 unique active wallets each in just Q2.

NFT mania actually peaked in March as per Google Trends, with NFT sales volumes across some protocols decreased from last quarter. Flow, which is mainly driven by NBA Top Shot, is seeing a dip in both users and volume by 16.62% and 66.87%, respectively, quarter on quarter.

CryptoPunks also had their transactions plummeting to a mere $16 million during June from over $95 million at the end of last quarter.


But while external factors such as crypto price aren’t appreciably encouraging, the gamification of DeFi or GameFi is “higher than ever,” states the report.

According to Dapp Radar, “reaching more people is the path to mass adoption,” with play-to-earn games led by Axie Infinity key drivers of ongoing growth. With over 62,000 unique wallets in the past month, “it appears that a wider, more mainstream audience has finally arrived.”

This is evident from Axie Infinity’s success which stands at the top NFT in the Dapp ranking in terms of volume. The Pokemon inspired dapp attained $84.1 million in transactional volume, 769% higher than Q1 2021 and now reaching over 4,700 daily unique on-chain users, a jump of 360.61% from the previous quarter.


Ethereum’s sidechain Ronin helps this growth by allowing users to interact with the Axie universe gas-free. However, the game itself has 295,000 daily players.

Axie actually had a breakout month in June as it earned a record $12.2 million in revenue. In the first five days of the month, Axie earned $9.2 million, or 75% of June’s entire revenue.

In less than two weeks, its token AXS has soared about 300% and is up 2,145% YTD.

“Decentralized games may be the missing piece towards mass adoption of blockchain technology, empowering individuals equally across the globe,” states Dapp Radar’s report noting how in the Philippines, players earn alternative income by generating Smooth Love Potion (SLP), the in-game currency which is sold for local currency through centralized exchanges.

Besides Ethereum, other protocols like WAX, EOS, and Polygon are also gaining traction, with Binance eager to repeat its DeFi success in the NFT space.

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