Ethereum Merge: Gaming as Usual, Energy Use 99% Down

The Ethereum switch to staking will require significantly less electricity, but may be more centralized due to ownership of tokens for staking.
  • The last ETH proof-of-work block is now a unique NFT.
  • ETH resumed centralized trading just hours after moving to proof-of-stake.
  • More ETH to remain locked for staking and stay away from the markets.

The Ethereum Merge event finally arrived and has so far managed to evolve the network into proof-of-stake without creating conflicting blockchains. The disruption for most games and token trading lasted only for hours, with Ethereum now removing its mining component and relying solely on ETH tokens staked. 

Vitalik Buterin, the project’s co-founder, announced the merger event as a success.

Ethereum is not the only blockchain to carry games, though it was instrumental to introduce the early NFT projects. But Ethereum was also the backbone of decentralized trading, which carries thousands of tokens for games or DeFi. The Merger has not disrupted the decentralized finance ecosystem present on Ethereum. 

ETH Trading is Back

Centralized trading also resumed for ETH tokens and some forms of WETH, as the Binance exchange is now certain there will be no chain split. 

Additionally, all NFT minted on the Ethereum ecosystem remain safe, though their transfer will not depend on mining anymore. The biggest criticism of NFT, their energy usage, is now a lesser concern. In fact, the event itself generated a unique NFT dedicated to the last proof-of-work block.

OpenSea has already announced it will only support transfers on the proof-of-stake blockchain, and not duplicate NFT items in the event of a split chain. 

Apps and games on Ethereum temporarily lost some of their visitors, mostly due to the stall in transactions.

ETH held above $1,590 on the day of the Merger event, as the entire market slid in the past week. The token, however, has the advantage of a permanent lockup of a significant part of its supply. 

The ETH 2.0 smart contract held more than 13.7M ETH tokens, equivalent to more than $21.7B. The tokens may be withdrawn now, though most transactions keep adding deposits of 32 ETH to increase the network’s proof-of-stake potential.

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