top of page
Search
  • Writer's picturejar0d

Dice Masters - Putting Play first in Play2Earn

Updated: Jun 24, 2022


Preface:


Over the coming weeks, months, and if needed, years I intend to follow the progress of a few different Play2Earn games from inception to final release. I'll primarily be focusing on four projects: Dice Masters, ICE Poker, Vroomway, and Wilderness. All four projects are Decentraland focused metaverse P2Es in different phases of release, being made by teams of varying sizes and skill sets.


Play to earn is a new and there have already been a few projects, Like Axie Infinity or Pegaxy that have made mistakes resulting in members of their community losing large amounts of money and damaging not only their reputation, but the reputation of Play to earn as a whole.


The more we explore different projects and identify what is, or isn't, working the sooner game creators will be able to perfect their games, and the better we as players and a community will be able to identify bad projects and warn others to avoid them.


Introduction


Dice Masters [145, -5] is the newest addition to Decentraland's quickly expanding list of Play to Earn projects. Brought to life by the team of Yannakis & DCLDating. Dice Masters is still very much in its infancy, but anyone should be able to appreciate how well the duo has designed and executed their vision already.



It’s exciting to read a pitch or play an early build of any project and feel the excitement of possibility wash over you. When I entered Dice Masters for the first time I felt exactly like I did when I finished reading Nikki Fuego’s Vroomway Proposal, “SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!”


At the time of writing this, there are only a limited number of game related NFTs and none of them have functionality yet, and the promise of this game is so exciting I didn't hesitate to spend 0.55eth sweeping up the only three items available. Many people would be upset or put off by the idea of NFTs that didn't come with Utility out of the box, however I think it's a brilliant decision.


The choice to focus entirely on the play and leave the earn for later is a bold one, that I believe will pay off not only for the project but for the players who invest time into playing the game for the right reasons. Choosing to work within the current limitations of the DCL APK and make a turn-based combat system and avoid the obstacles of attempting to pave the way for real-time combat; Dice Masters has been able to focus on polish and details that are already helping it stand out.




That’s not to say that the team does not have a plan and roadmap to a full Play to earn economy.




Community First


However, learning the lessons of Axie, ICE Poker and the other P2E titles that have come before it, Dice Masters is choosing to focus on gameplay and building a strong game and community focused on fun first.


You want to build your play-to-earn community around people who actually enjoy your game. It's clear to anyone who has been in P2E long enough to see a few games launch, that a large portion of the people looking into play to earn gaming are investor minded people focusing on maximizing ROI and extracting value from the community without a thought for the people making it or others invested in the project.


There is no promise that any of these projects will be the next World of Warcraft or go on to have the collectibility of Magic The Gathering, so when investing time or money in any play to earn project, it’s important that you are enjoying the gameplay experience.




The Look


Dice Masters has a polished visual style that, frankly, is missing in most DCL experiences. Yannakis has done a remarkable job on all of the 3D elements, and while the team has intentionally kept the gameplay and combat as simple as possible, to work within the Decentraland limitations, the controls feel smooth and never frustrating.


I think they were smart to lean into a familiar and comfortable style that would look perfectly in its element in the Steam marketplace or your app store of choice.





Anyone who has ever made, played, or participated in a DCL parkour or other P2E game’s alpha releases can tell you how remarkable an accomplishment it is to deliver a satisfying game experience right out of the gate. This isn’t meant to step on any of the other fantastic builders in DCL to make Dice Masters look, it’s simply a statement of fact; when working on the digital frontier, everything is harder.





Not only has Dice Masters and the fantastic visuals brought to life by Yannakis inspired me to make all kinds of silly Twitter posts, but I couldn’t keep walking around the fantastical forest in my Decentral Games sweats…




While there are only a few ready-to-buy NFTs for Dice Masters at the time of writing, another Play to Earn title in DCL Wilderness had me covered with their Wilderness - Gen 1 (Royal) Collection. I’m hoping to do a more thorough write up on what the team is doing over there since they are also doing awesome things, but at the moment the point is that Dice Masters made something so fun, I spent money supporting other creators because I was so hyped by what they had done and they aren’t ready, or perhaps willing, to take my money.


The Team


I didn’t know DCLDating or Yannakis before starting to play Dice Masters. However, anyone who knows me knows I can't help but slide into the DMs of any creator doing something that excites me, and while I've interacted more with Yannakis, in every exchange both come off as a humble, hardworking, people with a clear vision, and the confidence to realize it.


When I asked Yannakis if I could share this conversation below, he was a little uncomfortable, since no one likes DMs being shared, but I think it’s a perfect example of why I’m excited to invest time into playing their game as well as time promoting it to others, that goes beyond just the fantastic game they are creating.



This was basically our first conversation, and in a space with so much faux humility and toxic positivity; when you are talking to the real people building on the digital frontier, most of them are incredibly humble and thankful for each and every person willing to speak well of their work.


There was no reason for him to not just say, “thank you, that will be awesome when the time comes,” and there are plenty of paper-thin people in the space that would have been happy to lock up that support and politely end the conversation.


You want to invest in people who don’t want to let you invest in them until they’ve “proven” something to themselves first. Perhaps pride isn’t the right word, humility, or whatever you want to call it; it’s one of the top traits I want a person I’m investing in to have.



I just don’t know what they have left to prove. The foundation for a great experience has been laid.





Of course, they will need some help scaling from a team of two doing all the work to a team of 5 or more helping them, but those growing pains are going to happen one way or another, and I think they’ve already demonstrated enough on their own to be worthy of the DCL communities consideration for a proposal to help lift some of the burdens.


The Game


In the way Decentral Games and ICE Poker have helped onboard masses of people from the casino and poker interested communities of web2, a project like Dice Masters will be an incredible avenue for people to enter Decentraland for the first time.


There is a much greater ceiling for this project's audience size than any other project in DCL I’ve seen a working beta of. This is going to have a much greater appeal to the World of Warcraft players of the world than ICE Poker or even Wondermine. As the team continues to add land and enemy types, the sky is truly the limits (DCL has an unsatisfying amount of vertical height in my opinion)


There is no friction for a first-time player. You can play ICE Poker for free, but you need someone to delegate an NFT to you. There is nothing standing between you and murdering digital chickens as soon as you load in.



If you manage to miss the intuitive UX/UI through pure excitement as I did, there are plenty of people who will be happy to point you in the right direction, and once you start blissfully killing chickens at your own pace, it will only be a matter of time before you are ready to start accumulating the other resource.





The crafting costs seem steep at first glance, I mean how many chickens have to die to make a Wooden Sword? But all the resources cost are time, and if you are doing it right you should have managed to enjoy yourself while you accumulated wood and talked to whichever DCL personalities were hanging out while you did it.






You will need to kill 1,000 chickens to get your wooden sword, and you will need a wooden sword, at least, if you want a chance facing off against the executioners.

Currently there are no penalties for dying, but as the game continues to advance, the team has indicated this will change, so get your grinding in while the marshmallow pit is still soft.


You can also harvest Berries from bushes and exchange them for potions. Currently the primary use is surviving the boss battle that earns users the Beta-tester nft, if completed during Alpha releas.




You need 50 berries to make 1 potion, but once you get the rhythm of Mine->Chop->Shake you’ll have plenty of berries for the time being.




Conclusion


I've been playing Dice Masters in Decentraland for a little under a month now, and working on this blog almost as long. I can say confidently, I'm as excited today as I was when I first discovered it. The team has already expanded to a 100-plot space with a fantastic plan to optimise their use of that space. Dice Masters is going to set the bar for what a Decentraland game can be.


If you are curious about Decentraland or have friends you want to get to check out DCL, I think Dice Masters is the perfect place to start.


Join their discord to learn more: https://discord.gg/KUu4dQd66r

213 views2 comments

Recent Posts

See All
Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page