Author: Cryptoweida; Source: Author’s Twitter @thecryptoskanda
The best on-chain social network is not LensProtocol, but DuneAnalytics, and the best all-chain game is not darkforest_eth, but Uniswap. Crypto non-financial applications are not wrong because of “no mass adoption”, but because they do not serve the native needs of Crypto. It’s not that the product doesn’t work, but that the user doesn’t work.
First of all, the “best” mentioned here needs to meet the following three criteria: 1. Still alive (FOMO3D, Bell chain, etc. are not counted); 2. There is still user activity logic without the expectation of asset issuance and may generate fees or transaction volume; 3. The product conforms to the essential attributes of social networks or game products (note that it is essential, not just look like).
Frankly speaking, in the “Web3 social” products, no fundamentally innovative product has yet emerged. I know you want to tell me about the Lens family (as shown in the figure below), including: – 4 YouTube/Spotify imitations; – 6 Twitter/Insta imitations; Another web3 imgflip, and even a new user acquisition and mutual aid platform based on Lens, only Firefly has some innovation. You may ask, so what? It still has users.
Countless times in history have taught us that social imitations are difficult to survive without revolutionary breakthroughs that can break existing user relationships: Vine and Musicaly, Tencent Weibo and Sina Weibo, and Thread and Twitter now. The last revolutionary decentralized social Damus, do you still open it today?
Users will not become more affectionate because you do crypto. Here we quote the discussion of @lidangzzz.
Lens has more than 110,000 profiles today, but transaction volume and daily active users are declining. We can see that apart from the expectation of airdrops, Lens is difficult to maintain the daily activity of existing users. The reason is: what breakthrough scenario does Lens provide that is not available to Web2 counterparts? To this day, crypto project parties only have official tweets without “official Lens”, and this most crypto-native demand has not even been migrated.
Web3 products that look like social products like Lens, and emphasize “data sovereignty” too much, but cannot answer the basic questions: demand: Will users move to do the same thing as Twitter/YouTube but with less content for “data sovereignty”? Users: Do ordinary users care about their CPC value of a few dollars? Creators: Does the creator’s work still have value when it leaves the algorithmic stream? Matching: Can the feed mechanism retain user time?
I am bullish on the entire chain game, but I am not bullish on developers imposing their focus on users. According to the definition on Wikipedia, a game is an activity conducted in accordance with certain rules to obtain incentives, which can be material or just pleasure, and the game result is only related to skills, strategies, and luck. That’s it, from ancient times to the present. Any adjective added before “game” is just your wishful thinking.
Why is a game fun? Because of the unknown, the first time you learned to parachute accurately, and you were amazed when you saw the 8x scope, but once you played it, everything became natural and the freshness disappeared, so it naturally became boring. What game will always be fresh? Gambling-betting on probability, paying costs to get on the table, and playing-zero-sum confrontation with opponents, with only one victory. Not only are there countless possibilities, but each game is also the same heartbeat.
Pushing the chips to the center of the table, anything is possible with the blind cards in hand, and the victory or defeat is all in my mind. Adrenaline surges in the moment the cards are opened. The reason why gambling is fascinating is not only because it can win money, but also because of the stimulation. Complex mechanisms and cool visual effects may be the sufficient but unnecessary conditions for “fun games”. Have you ever thought about why the variety of casino games has been so few for thousands of years?
Because they have objective and nearly 50:50 fair win-loss judgment mechanisms, unlimited possibilities determined by probability, allow skills to influence results, and have been tested for a long time. Going to the gambling table is the highest honor of a game, because this game is not only fun, but also has a consensus. Consensus is greater than everything, and on-chain transactions are the most consensual game. Please use this perspective to substitute Uniswap.
Uniswap is such a game:-The game engine is completely deployed on the chain-The game win-loss rules are absolutely objective and transparent-There can be unlimited gambling tables, each table has different gameplay (transaction pair)-Tense and exciting-7/24 hours uninterrupted-Various strategies (rush to the dog, scientist, add LP)-The reward is settled on the spotBe like Uniswap, but are you going to sell this kind of game to Genshin otaku? Of course not!
Do you see my point? It is unrealistic to try to educate and transform players who have already formed a stereotype of the concept of “games” in the Web2 world; it is statistically impossible to try to use game products specialized by Web2 giants to make users “enter Web3”. In Crypto’s “players”, who experience service for the first time in virtual worlds, keep their adrenaline high. I believe this is the primary issue of the whole-chain game.
As a witness to the Axie team’s transformation, a pioneer in gamefi in 20, and MM in multiple games and socialfi in 21, I came to the conclusion in 2023: give up illusions, recognize reality, first consider Crypto, then consider applications, first consider liquidity, then the number of users. Think about the problem from the first principle of Crypto, don’t be led astray by Web2’s products and users, don’t be persistent, don’t be stuck in old ways. The native is the strongest.