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A Complete Beginner's Guide to Play-to-Earn (P2E) Games
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A Complete Beginner's Guide to Play-to-Earn (P2E) Games

Concepts of play-to-earn (P2E) and NFT games have become the talk of our daily lives for a while, especially in developing countries and for people struggling to make ends meet. Many people are leaning toward creating a side income for themselves through the comfort of their homes, especially if their work or education is tying them in front of screens. 

For people who are interested in creating a revenue stream from P2E games, we created a guide to make it easier for beginners to understand the concept of P2E games, in which they can own all the assets (NFTs) and currencies they make while playing, enabling them to sell them on the internet. Some of these games may require an initial investment to begin playing and earning, some may be completely free. Some may require different steps for the beginner to perform before they can play, and so on. That is why a beginner needs to grasp the basics and the working mechanics of P2E games.

Before we begin our guide, it is important to understand that it's critical to figure out what game genres you enjoy before you start playing. Play-to-earn is just an extension of gaming, with the core premise being that you love what you're doing. If you become bored or feel like you're grinding for a buck instead of having fun and earning, then that game is not for you.

This guide will serve as a hub, where under sections, you can find links to our other academy articles, explaining topics in all their detail if you are getting lost or need a step-by-step beginner tutorial on the aforementioned topic. 

What is an NFT?

Before we begin our guide, it is imperative to learn what NFTs are and how they differ from cryptocurrencies: NFTs are one of the two pillars of P2E games, along with cryptocurrencies. While cryptocurrencies allow you to benefit from gaming, NFTs are in-game assets that can also be exchanged on the open market. 

They can range from membership passes that allow you to play the game to any type of in-game item, or even take the form of tickets to attend special events in Web3 games (P2E games use the decentralized web3 technology, currently we are on web2 where servers are centralized, read here to learn the difference between Web2 and Web3).

NFTs in games can range from characters to land and are often traded on an open market or a game’s in-game market. There are also secondary markets where players may trade their items with other players or interested buyers.

The value of NFTs determines the success of any title in the blockchain gaming market. The assets often begin at a modest base price and increase in value as the game progresses. Sometimes they sell for a lot of money, like in the instance of Axie Infinity in 2021, where one basic Axie sold for $1000.

If you need a more in-depth guide and tutorial about NFTs and how NFTs are used in gaming, read our article.

What is a Play-to-Earn (P2E) Game? How do Play-to-Earn NFT games work?

Users may farm or gather crypto coins or tokens and NFTs in play-to-earn games, allowing them to be sold on the market. This is basically how you generate income from P2E games. Each participant may acquire more NFTs or tokens to trade and earn money by playing the game regularly.

This is very similar to game genres such as Massive Multiplayer Online (MMO). Players collect digital items to further their progress. These can include in-game objects like weapons, property, or wearables. They’re usually earned as rewards for completing quests and challenges or acquired from loot boxes bought with real currency. This is where play-to-earn games and “GameFi” come into play. The popular play-to-earn game Axie Infinity, for example, allows players to purchase, battle, and breed virtual creatures and earn NFTs and cryptocurrency as a reward. Blockchain technology and NFTs enabled the development of digital goods that are unreplicable. This effectively makes all NFTs and limited tokens for a P2E game unique and have value on the market.

Aside from earning tokens and NFTs from playing a game, Staking is another way to generate money in play-to-win games. In NFT games, staking enables users to store NFTs or cryptocurrencies in smart contracts, which produce rewards. These rewards can change from tokens to NFT boxes which can include a random NFT of varying rarities that may be sold on the secondary market. 

Overall there are mainly three ways to earn from P2E games, earning in-game cryptocurrencies by playing the game, earning NFTs by playing the game, and staking your tokens or NFTs at hand to generate passive income.

To take a closer look at how a Play-to-Earn game works, read our article on Spintop Academy.

How to Start Playing Play-to-Earn NFT Games? How to Get Started With GameFi?

For new players, each play-to-earn game will have distinct requirements. To store your cryptocurrency and link it to the game, you'll need a crypto wallet like MetaMask or Binance Chain Wallet.

You may also need to make an initial investment to play, such as assembling a team of characters or purchasing in-game equipment. Some play-to-earn games may require no initial investment at all and can be completely Free-to-Play (F2P).

What is the role of NFT in gaming? What is NFT minting?

NFTs are mostly bought and sold for profit. But in-game, NFTs may well be items like character skins, weapon skins, accessories, and so on. P2E games use NFTs extensively for purposes other than trading. NFTs can serve as power-ups to cosmetics or even unique artwork. Whatever you can put on the internet can be put into the form of an NFT.

For example, once you acquire a skin, whether it be from buying or earning from the P2E game, it will be recorded as an NFT on a decentralized internet ledger. If another user or player purchases that skin, the money will go to you and not to the game developers.

This generates a money loop that only grows in magnitude as the game progresses and new people join. Of course, NFTs with more bonuses that can boost a player's earnings will have more value. Besides, you own that item for eternity, making you a collector simultaneously. This is why NFTs have the potential to be the future of gaming. 

For example, in traditional games: The famous first-person shooter game Call of Duty generated an estimated few hundred million dollars in revenue on in-game purchases in 2021 alone. Despite having paid for these digital assets, if Call of Duty experienced some downtime or were discontinued altogether, players would have no way to use their assets as they were only accessible within the confines of the game. Meaning that players never actually experienced ownership over any of their assets.

In contrast, NFTs exist independently of any individual gaming ecosystem and live directly on the blockchain. As a result, regardless of what happens to a game, in-game purchases in the form of an NFT can always be bought, sold, or traded on public marketplaces.

To read more about how NFT minting works, and how to mint NFTs, read here.

How to Set Up A Crypto Wallet?

Now that you have understood how the basic game economy and business model works for P2E games and decided to get into it, the first thing you must do is create a crypto wallet. All wallets serve the same purpose: As your crypto bank to store cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, and Ethereum, validate all transactions, and store NFTs.

There are a couple of crypto wallets out there, but the most popular and accessible one that can connect to various blockchains is the Metamask. It allows you to store most of the cryptocurrencies on popular blockchains you might need. Metamask comes as a browser extension or a mobile app. For Solana-based (A blockchain that’s sadly incompatible with Metamask) projects, we suggest you use the Phantom wallet Phantom is the most popular wallet on the Solana blockchain. 

Setting up a Metamask wallet is a straightforward process, and our Metamask wallet guide will walk you through each step. Phantom Wallet is similar, and once you set up your Metamask, you will already have the necessary knowledge to set up any other crypto wallet.

Read our article on Spintop Academy to learn how to set up your first Metamask wallet step-by-step.

How to Connect the Wallet with the Game?

Note that some games will have their wallets for storage. You will need to link your crypto wallet in the game or to the game’s site. Some will directly work with your already set up Metamask or another crypto wallet. It is a very simple process that happens with a couple of clicks, and the game will almost always guide you through the steps.

Blockchain games, as opposed to traditional games that need a login and password, use your crypto wallet as your account. Only utilize wallets obtained from official app stores that are connected to the wallet's official website to avoid fraud and scams. 

How to Buy Cryptocurrency?

Now that you have set up your crypto wallet. Some games might require you to add funds or assets to your crypto wallet. You might need a certain amount of the game’s native token to take advantage of the game’s P2E aspects. Some may require you to purchase an NFT character or a membership pass to start playing. One such example that requires a one-time membership pass is Benji Bananas.

It is time to buy cryptocurrency. Even though some games are completely free to begin and let you earn on the fly in a concept called Play and Earn, some will require an initial investment that can be a tidy sum or a considerable amount depending on the game. 30 to 100 dollars to get an Axie with decent in-game stats in the case of games like Axie Infinity, for example. 

You may not have to buy a cryptocurrency depending on the game you decide to start playing and completely bypass this step. But eventually, you will need to learn how to buy and sell on a crypto exchange, so you might as well learn how to do it:

How to Buy Cryptocurrency on a Centralized (CEX) or Decentralized (DEX) Exchange?

Typically, cryptocurrency may be purchased straight through a centralized exchange (or CEX) or a decentralized exchange (DEX). Using a CEX like is just like opening a bank account. Although simple, the procedure will be lengthy and require many authentication methods. You must first pass the verification procedure to purchase or trade on the site.

You may purchase BTC, USDT, and other cryptocurrencies. Binance has a more extensive selection of coins compared to other private exchanges. A commission fee will be levied, known as "peer-to-peer trading." 

In order to purchase some coins, you may need to use different exchanges. Not every exchange has every coin listed. Kucoin for example, is a hybrid exchange that may offer alternate coins to you that may not be available on Binance. PancakeSwap on the other hand is a pure DEX that you can find a lot of new coins for trading. Spintop has a very reliable staking procedure with very high APIs, it does not force you to lock your coins for staking and utilizes a very beginner-friendly user interface. If you are looking for a particular coin to buy you can just Google it and find out which exchanges you can buy it from.

Some of these exchanges accept debit and credit card payments, providing a quick and easy way to convert your fiat cash (EUR, USD, GBP) into cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin.

What is the difference between CEX and DEX?

Keep in mind that not all cryptocurrencies may be purchased on a central exchange. New games, as well as older titles, will occasionally employ exclusively decentralized exchanges (DEX), where the only mode of purchasing is through other cryptocurrencies.

This implies that you might not be able to use your debit card to purchase a game's governance token. Instead, you'd have to buy Ethereum first for example, then exchange it for the game governance or reward token.

This implies that you might not be able to use your debit card to purchase a game's governance token. Instead, you'd have to buy Ethereum first, then exchange it for the game governance or reward token.

For example, ETH or wETH is one of the most significant currencies to retain in your wallet since they can be readily acquired with fiat money and are used for the majority of transactions or trades. Use a site like Pancakeswap for the Binance Smart Chain or Quickswap for Polygon-based projects to exchange ETH for other currencies.

In DEXes, users primarily offer liquidity through the use of "Liquidity Pools," in which other cryptocurrency owners stake their coins and provide liquidity. Since CEX has all the users’ funds in their custody, they offer more liquidity but hold all authority over the funds. Whereas DEX uses algorithms to match buyers and sellers, eliminating any need for intermediaries. 

How to Buy and Sell NFTs?

Buying NFTs is a straightforward procedure. You have to create a crypto wallet that can hold them. Games usually let you see and browse their NFT collection with their interfaces after connecting your crypto wallet to their interface. You can buy or sell NFTs on marketplaces like OpenSea or Binance NFT Marketplace.

You will then fund your cryptocurrency wallet with either cryptocurrency or fiat currency options. Then you have to connect your wallet to the NFT marketplace. After that, you can start browsing the marketplace’s offerings and make a purchase.

If you own an NFT and want to sell it, you must list the token on a marketplace. To do this, click on the NFT in your collection after connecting your wallet to a marketplace that you’d like to sell and locate the “sell” button. Clicking on “sell” will bring up a pricing page, allowing you to set the terms of the sale. You can choose either a fixed price or an auction sale.

NFTs typically sell for ETH or ERC-20 tokens. However, some platforms only let you sell for the native token of their blockchain. Some games will have their own marketplaces which you can directly buy or sell on their platform.

When purchasing an item in the marketplace, you will be required to pay a purchase price as well as a gas fee. A gas fee is a cost that must be paid in order to complete a transaction on the blockchain. The little cut is used to compensate validators, who are network computers that assist the blockchain function smoothly. The purchase price may be divided into two parts: one for the game creators, who receive a tiny proportion of all transactions in the marketplace, and one for the prior owner of the item. 

Sometimes game companies cannot afford to create their own NFT marketplace. In this circumstance, individuals usually turn to OpenSea or other comparable markets. For example, anyone on OpenSea can post their NFTs for sale or buy NFTs from other users. 

For more information on the aforementioned secondary markets, make sure to bookmark our guide on What are NFT Marketplaces and Which Ones Are the Best?

How to start earning money through play-to-earn games?

There are mainly three ways of earning from P2E games, as we mentioned in the beginning. But overall, these games differ from each other by their gameplay mechanics and some may have other ways of earning which may not be shared by another game. For example, some games like GensoKishi Online or The Sandbox let you craft your own unique stories and minigames inside its metaverse, and players can play these levels you created by paying a certain fee. They can also earn from those user-generated minigames. The opportunities are endless.

We have a more detailed guide on how GameFi, or financialization of video gaming works. But the three main pillars are the same: earning in-game cryptocurrencies by playing the game, earning NFTs by playing the game, and staking your tokens or NFTs to generate passive income.

How to Rent NFTs? How to Join a Crypto Gaming Guild? What is NFT Scholarship?

Some games may require a substantial amount of firsthand investment to begin playing and earning, and not every player has the means to do so. A new player might not want to commit to a game by purchasing an NFT and may just want to feel the ropes of the game and understand if it is a good game for them, how its tokens are performing on the market, and so on.

In developing countries like the Philippines, P2E games are popular since they are regarded as a legitimate means of earning a living. When the unemployment rate in the country soared as high as 40% during the pandemic, many found P2E games like Axie Infinity a great way to earn extra income.

But how did Filipinos were able to afford to buy the required NFT assets to play the game? This is where crypto gaming guilds or NFT renting communities, such as Play It Forward DAO offers, come into the picture. Within the guilds are owners who rent out their NFTs to gamers for an amount of the game earnings. This is known as Scholarship in NFT games. It allows players to rent expensive NFTs for a low fee and split the earnings with the owner.

We have an extensive article on crypto guilds and a list of the top guilds out there in our Academy. To learn more about how to join a play-to-earn gaming guild and understand how they work, read our article.

How Much Income do People Make from Play-To-Earn Games?

Gaming isn't normally regarded as financially beneficial for the average player. It might be difficult to comprehend how normal participants can profit from a blockchain game. In reality, many people, particularly in underdeveloped nations, make a livable salary via crypto games like Axie Infinity, players may earn $200 to $1,000 (USD) every month in SLP, depending on market pricing and gameplay. Another popular crypto game that is comparatively more accessible than Axie is Thetan Arena, where players can make up to $50 to $100 every month.

How to cash out from Play-to-Earn games?

When playing NFT games, we said that there are two major ways to earn money: collecting NFTs to sell/lend or playing consistently to generate an in-game cryptocurrency stream.

These actions will provide you with NFTs, tokens, or both, which you may sell on the secondary market. You may be able to sell both your NFTs and tokens on Binance, depending on the particular cryptocurrency and products you have. NFTs for Ethereum and BNB Smart Chain (BSC) can be easily added to the Binance NFT Marketplace.

To withdraw a token such as SLP from Axie Infinity or SAND from The Sandbox, you'll need to find an exchange that provides your play-to-earn cryptocurrency as a tradeable pair. If you wish to spend your profits in real life, you'll need to research if you can exchange the tokens for fiat currency (such as US dollars and euros) and deposit them into your bank account. Most of the time, the game currency won’t be tradable directly into fiat money, so you may need to exchange it for a stablecoin (fixed-value coins, e.g., BUSD, which shares the same value with real-world dollars) such as BUSD first, then convert it into fiat money of your choice to deposit from your bank account.

To change into fiat currency such as USD, EUR, or GBP, the governance token should be available on a CEX. If that's not the case, look for it on decentralized exchanges like PancakeSwap or SushiSwap, where you may trade it for USDT / USDC / BUSD, the most popular stablecoins today.

What does Tokenomics mean?

You may find the tokenomics section on the games we review on Gamepedia. This is a term you will come across a lot when you are looking for a P2E game to play. "Tokenomics" means the set of rules and concepts that a gaming studio establishes for its governance tokens. A governance token helps to stabilize the economy and is often used to acquire NFTs in the marketplace, vote in the game’s development decisions, etc. Some games use two or three token systems in their economy, such as an in-game reward or utility token that comes in unlimited numbers and a premium governance token for exclusive use.

To investigate a game's tokenomics, consult its "whitepaper." A whitepaper is a document that describes how their coin is distributed among team members, players, and game developers.

On Gamepedia, our team of experts reviews the games and constantly checks them for new changes; you can also view how a particular game’s token is performing on the game list or that particular game’s page.

How can I find existing and upcoming crypto games? How to Choose the Right Play-to-Earn Game?

Once you've decided to try play-to-earn games, the next step is to pick one that matches your interests and budget range. You must ask the following questions to yourself before picking a game:

  • Do you find this type of game fun and interesting?
  • Is there an upfront cost to start playing?
  • If there is an upfront cost, is it affordable for you?
  • Is there a way to try the game for free first?
  • Do you understand the game mechanics?
  • Do you understand how developers make money? (Have you checked the whitepaper of the game?)
  • Do you understand the economics of the game tokens?

With over 400 active blockchain games available today, picking the ideal one for you may be confusing at first. So head over to our ever-growing list of games on Gamepedia for detailed overviews, and filter through different genres and token markets to find one that is suitable for your taste.

P2E Game Guides

There are currently 26 guides for different games, and the list is always growing. You can begin your play-to-earn journey on our guided games list if you want an easy beginning.

Here’s our list of Play-to-Earn game guides that we created for the community.

Bottom line: P2E Games are Profitable if you Pick the Right Game for you

Play-to-earn games mix the enjoyment of video games with the opportunity to earn real money for your time. However, your results may vary. In Axie Infinity, research released by the Cryptoday newsletter on Substack in July 2021 revealed that the typical user might earn roughly 1,125 Smooth Love Potion tokens weekly. At the then-high of $0.3462 per token, a gamer could earn an estimated $389.48 per week.  

While play-to-earn cryptocurrency games can be beneficial, they may need an initial monetary commitment as well as time to understand the game and expand your investment. By completing your homework and being ready to go the distance, it is possible to have fun while earning substantial cryptocurrency and NFT rewards for your time by picking the right game and being prepared to go the distance in your GameFi experience.

Before you begin your P2E journey, you should check out these articles for more information:

At Spintop Gamepedia we strive to introduce you to the best P2E games on the market. Our team of experts is constantly reviewing and updating the game list for any changes and failed projects so we can save you your precious time. We have a huge library of nearly 400 games with detailed overviews, tokenomics, and all the necessary links that will direct you to games’ social media, whitepaper, play button, gameplay details, and guides.

Visit our Spintop Academy for detailed guides like this. We also have the Spintop Staking, where you can stake your crypto for high APR returns. And here’s our complete list of Play-to-Earn NFT games on Gamepedia.


A Complete Beginner's Guide to Play-to-Earn (P2E) Games


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