After explaining how to invest in the metaverse, it was only logical that Coinpri should give you an example of a metaverse with The Sandbox. In this Coinstory#4, you will learn more about the history of the game, the big brands that invest in it, but also how to buy virtual land and many other things.
- The Sandbox: the story of the metaverse game
- The Sandbox, big brands and big names invest
- The Sandbox, a game where you are the creator
- Where and how to buy SAND or land?
- The Sandbox’s main competitors
- Are Blockchain games a panacea?
Disclaimer: This article does not constitute investment advice or an incentive to invest. It is strictly an informative article about the history of The Sandbox, and tokenomics is not considered. You are solely responsible for the trading and investment decisions you make.
The Sandbox: the story of the metaverse game
2011, the grain of sand that started it all
For those who don’t know, The Sandbox is a French project (cocorico!). At the origin of The Sandbox, there are two Frenchmen: Arthur Madrid (CEO) and Sebastien Borget (COO). However, 2011’s Sandbox does not look like the one we know today. And for good reason, The Sandbox was initially a 2D mobile game, managed by Pixowl, a mobile game publisher. In this game you could, hang on: play with sand! Yes, it was basically a “sandbox” game in the literal sense of the word!
2012, the birth of a cult license
Strangely enough, the team quickly realized that they were not going to conquer the video game world with this …. They decided to transfer the formula into a game where each player can create his own 2D universe with different characters (heroes but also enemies) and multiple levels.
March 2012, the license we know today was born! By the way, for the most curious, here is the launch trailer of the time!
The game, innovative for its time, attracts up to 5,000 players per day! A feat that allowed it to become one of the best games in the “Hidden Gems” category on iOS! As you can imagine, such visibility allows more and more players to find the game…
In 2016, with over 45 updates under its belt and over 1.5 million player-created levels, it’s time for a sequel!
2016, The Sandbox Evolution lands
In June 2016, The Sandbox Evolution was released. This sequel in addition to improving the graphics of the game, its physics and the size of the levels by 10 times (!), now allows players to destroy worlds and create their own games!
Le succès est au rendez-vous et l’entreprise décide d’utiliser une nouvelle technologie pour pousser son produit encore plus loin…
The success is there and the company decides to use a new technology to push its product even further…
2018, a buyout by Animoca Brands and the introduction of Blockchain
In 2018, The Sandbox is acquired by the Hong Kong mobile app developer Animoca for $4.8 million. This makes The Sandbox a subsidiary of Animoca Brands.
Note that when Animoca Brands bought The Sandbox, the game was already at over 40 million downloads. Unfortunately, due to the lack of financial rewards, players did not stay more than one year in the universe, so it was not possible to bet on a long-term community.
To solve this problem, the company is making an innovative bet: embracing Web3 and Blockchain to become an immersive virtual world where participants can chat, play, exchange NFTs and even participate in virtual concerts, thanks to their avatars!
As at the origin of the game, it is still possible to create your own universe, but exit the 2D of the boomers, welcome to the 3D!
Another important addition is that the game now uses Blockchain and NFT technology. Each creation can thus be resold on a marketplace, thanks to the unique properties of NFTs.
In 2019, the figures for this new version of The Sandbox are already impressive: $144 million in transaction volume (including $70 million in real estate). Similarly the capitalization of the SAND token is $2 billion.
2021-2022, the rocket takes off
With such figures, The Sandbox is quickly becoming the talk of the town and more and more investors are interested in the project. In 2021, The Sandbox will raise $93 million in funding.
At the same time, at the end of 2021, Facebook changed its name to Meta. This name change caused the price of tokens with “Meta” in their name or attached to the metaverse, such as The Sandbox or Decentraland, to explode.
Just think, the price of the SAND token was $0.83 on 26/10/2021 and it went up to $8.40 on 25/11/2021, a 10-fold increase in just 1 month!
The Sandbox, big brands and big names invest
Just under 200 major brands (March 2022) have already invested in The Sandbox. We can mention Adidas, Atari, Ubisoft, etc…
In France, we can quote for example Carrefour, the Casino group or Axa France which also bought their virtual lands. Carrefour for example has acquired a surface equivalent to 30 supermarkets, just that.
Brands have been very slow to take the turn of the web. For the first time, they tend to position themselves on the ‘Web3’ a little earlier to avoid repeating their past mistakes. Brands don’t go there to monetize, we don’t know how to do that, audiences still need to be educated. It is above all a place for creativity.Sébastien Borget, co-founder of The Sandbox
Real estate speculation is one of the reasons for these big brands to invest in the metaverse. Indeed, the revenues generated by the metaverse could reach 5,000 billion dollars by 2030, according to a study by McKinsey.
Apart from the big brands, let’s note the presence of celebrities in this metaverse such as Paris Hilton, or Snoop Dogg. Snopp Dogg‘s virtual land has been valued at 400,000 euros!
Big brands are competing with each other in terms of ingenuity around Web3 marketing. Buying virtual lands will also allow you to benefit from real objects, like textiles or sneakers. Adidas, for example, should release its collection in November 2022.
The Sandbox, a game where you are the creator
The Sandbox is not just a metaverse game where you can move around and visit. It’s also a world where you can create things and be paid by other players. You can create your NFT and put it for sale on a marketplace. It should be noted that 5% commission is taken by the platform on all financial transactions. There are already more than 500 000 users who have connected their wallet to the platform.
It’s quite similar to real estate in the real world. It’s a space in which we can create experiences that we can then monetize, by selling content or renting this space to other creators.Sébastien Borget, co-founder of The Sandbox
NFTs are used as property titles registered on the Blockchain. Buying a virtual land through an NFT is owning that land. These lands are located on a map and can be purchased on Opensea. You are free to do whatever you want on your land. You can build, create, and soon rent your plot. A virtual economy is gradually being established. Sébastien Borget adds, about the NFT:
Users own their digital content. Avatars, equipment, land, houses… everything belongs to them.Sébastien Borget, co-founder of The Sandbox
The possibilities are immense. In these virtual universes, it is possible to modify reality and the border between real and virtual becomes blurred. The virtual content allows to represent the reality, to see the reality, but under another angle, thanks in particular to connected virtual objects. One thinks in particular of the virtual reality helmets (VR helmets) like Oculus which makes it possible to immerse oneself in a virtual environment and to improve the gameplay of video games. Augmented reality will also make it possible. There will be no need for joysticks anymore! Similarly, artificial intelligence will also have a role to play in the democratization of this kind of games. Start-ups are already starting to invest.
Where and how to buy SAND or land?
To invest in The Sandbox, you have two options: either you can buy its SAND tokens, or you can buy NFT on a marketplace.
If you decide to buy crypto SAND, you can do so by logging into a cryptocurrency exchange platform like Binance, Kraken, FTX, or Coinbase.
If you haven’t created an account yet, you can do so easily, it only takes a few minutes. You will be able to buy crypto with FIAT currency (euro or dollar) using your payment card. You can also use a virtual credit card. Among these platforms, choose one that allows fast transactions so you can trade at the best price.
If you decide to buy lands (virtual lands), you will have to connect to a marketplace dedicated to this like opensea.io. Once connected to the website, you will be able to buy the lands with ethers (ETH). The lowest price is currently 1.28 ETH. There are more than 165 000 items for sale, you should find what you are looking for!
As a reminder, we tell you here how to invest in the metaverse.
The Sandbox’s main competitors
The Sandbox, a pioneer but a latecomer…
The Sandbox is currently 30,000 active users per month. This figure seems derisory compared to other behemoths, like Roblox (202 million), Minecraft (140 million) or Fortnite (80 million). However, The Sandbox is still valued at 14.8 billion dollars, which is not nothing.
Roblox, a very serious competitor
Roblox is a free-to-play, multiplayer game aimed primarily at teenagers. This game was released in 2005 and by 2012 it had more than 320 million players. Like Decentraland or Second Life, there is no specific goal to the game, except to create and make other players want to visit your virtual space.
The game uses a virtual currency, the Robux. This currency is used to make all transactions. Players can earn it by creating games; the more popular the created games are, the more chance to earn money. It is also possible to buy Robux with FIAT currency.
Decentraland, the other metaverse that weighs in on the CryptoGame
Decentraland is a 3D metaverse game with 90,601 virtual land plots. The native cryptocurrency of the game is MANA. The game runs on the Ethereum blockchain. Each plot of land is 16 x 16 meters, but there is no limit to the height of what you can build on it. The 2017 ICO had funded the project to the tune of $24 million, which is a testament to the strength of the project. Decentralization is also one of the strengths of the game.
Fortnite, much more than just a game
Fortnite is not a Blockchain game per se, but it gathers characteristics of a metaverse game: immersive experience, socialization through virtual worlds, purchase of virtual skin, a very strong community, etc.
This game was created in 2017 with the famous Battle Royal (a free-to-play game where 100 players compete on an increasingly small map). Professional players now exist and there are international championships. The number of players is huge. In June 2022, the Battle Royale title had between 2.5 and 4 million concurrent players, most of whom are between 15 and 17 years old.
It’s possible that Fortnite will also get into Blockchain, and if so, it would seriously compete with The Sandbox.
Are Blockchain games a panacea?
Let’s push the thinking about The Sandbox a little further. Let’s take a general look at the advantages and drawbacks of Blockchain games.
This type of game has definite advantages: you own your creations, no one can take them away from you (as long as they are well secured), not even the game creators. There is a better distribution of revenues between the game platform and the creators, who can be paid directly by the users. A new gaming experience is also possible, a more immersive experience. And it is possible to make money
However, we can also question some points. First of all, concerning the immersion of the players in a virtual world: some users will be even more addicted than they already are. Also, wanting to earn money by playing a “game” will make it much less fun… when you don’t lose money by playing it! Finally, an often neglected aspect, but this will push a part of the population in poor countries to “farm” some of the game’s collectibles to resell them on a marketplace. We already saw it with Axie Infinity (until the price collapsed…)
As you can see, The Sandbox is above all the story of a French success story. With the move to Blockchain in 2018, the project that was still just a mobile game has grown up nicely. The Sandbox is now playing in the big league, or should I say in the sandbox of the big boys… It is one of the unmissable when thinking about investing in the metaverse. But beware, like all crypto-currencies, in addition to the project, it is also necessary to take into account the tokenomics of its token, perhaps a future article?
Coming from a teaching background, I’ve become passionate about the world of Blockchain. I’m eager to learn more and share the fruit of my research through my articles.