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DMarket is a blockchain-based platform, which is running on smart contracts, for trading items from "any game." To better understand project's value and scale, we need to get deeper into the gaming industry.
Items acquired real value quite long ago. Back in 2004, a cult video game called World of Warcraft was released. Shortly after that, players started doing business, selling in-game gold. But so far, there have been a few reasons as for why the items market couldn't reach its full potential. First, each deal requires instant sync of hundreds of thousands of databases provided by games and publishers. Secondly, one would need an intermediary they could trust. The most burning yet obvious issue is that virtual items are assigned exclusively to the game they belong. There is no easy and secure way to exchange the indie game cards for a sword from The Witcher.
The DMarket team claims to have tackled problems mentioned above. The service allows any player—whatever the game or platform—evaluate and sell or exchange their virtual assets in one click. Blockchain and smart contracts ensure 100% security and interconnection of all games with no need for any middlemen. To prove that, the company rolled out a demo version and established a testnet. The marketplace will take off Q1 2018, once the MVP with supported games is launched.
The team believes its product would be of great interest not only for gamers but also for developers. A greater part of the transaction fee will end up going directly to a developer's pocket. This way of monetization will act as an incentive for devs to join DMarket.
Regarding the market in general, in the White Paper, project's creators expect DMarket to be capable of integrating 5,000 video games via API in the future. 10 percent of them would be AAA games (video games produced and distributed by a mid-sized or major publisher, typically having higher development and marketing budgets). Project's founders also anticipate that the number of users will reach 500 million, and the total price of all items will surpass the $100 billion mark.
As of now, the second stage of token sale is taking place. The first one attracted about $11 million in four days. Note that there are no pre-sale discounts for large investors. Vitalik Buterin would approve such approach.
DMarket will eventually sell 85% of tokens and reserve remaining amount for the development of the platform and its advisors and partners. DMarket tokens will be listed on leading exchanges in 30–60 days after the second phase of sales finishes. Apart from being traded on exchanges, DMarket coins will be used in the process of selling, buying, and exchanging virtual items, as well as in any other type of transaction on the platform itself.
The team has both experience and expertise required to develop the product. It is crucial that nowadays the video games market is experiencing blockchainization and tokenization. Unsurprisingly, there are some serious rivals for DMarket—WAX, SkinCoin, and Voxel that also develop blockchain solutions aimed to enable users to trade and exchange virtual items. That's the reason why the experienced team was the primary criterion for me when choosing a project in the gaming industry.
CEO Volodymyr Panchenko is an expert in trading games and in-game items. Founder Alex Kokhanovskyy created a successful cybersport team Na'Vi, the second by popularity in the world. Now Alex has everything to do with cybersport as he is the shareholder of the world's third-largest cybersport organization ESforce Holding. There's also a specialist who worked on the cryptocurrency called DASH.
The gaming industry and the team are main reasons to invest in this company. Team's competence and the fact that the market is enormous yet still growing make me believe that DMarket will make it.