Highly popular play to earn games often help recruit new players with the option of free to play. Most recently, Axie Infinity announced it will consider free to play, doing away with the need to invest in three playable characters. Other games also grant a starter pack to get to know the game and buy NFTs as an option.
Thetan Arena is a hot MOBA e-sport type game that competes for attention as one of the best-known P2E headlines. Thetan Arena is also open for free to play, where GEM assets can be earned. GEM can then be used to evolve heroes or advance in the game. GEM is also available for purchase through the game store.
Entering the Splinterlands game requires basic deck-building from a set of collectible cards. Splinterlands has made it possible to play with a free deck. At any point in time, players can buy extension packs or specific cards from other players in the marketplace. NFT-protected cards can then be sold again and turned to crypto tokens.
Monster Galaxy is an arena and training game, and a continuation of a free to play hit from 2011. Monster Galaxy can be started with mission mode, while earning in-game tokens. Later, those tokens can be exchanged for more rare characters or advancement. Buying a Genesis NFT of playable MOGA is optional, but there will only ever be 9,000 of those beasts.
Alien Worlds takes the lead as one of the most active games on Binance Smart Chain. Alien Worlds also expands its popularity by offering a free option. Having a WAX account and wallet allows players to start with Alien Worlds and even mine for resources, with no immediate need to buy NFTs or spend on gas fees.
Skyweaver is part of the card collection genre, offering a free deck to start the game and the potential to win legendary cards with more gameplay. The game offers a view of an alien universe, and is open to try as an Android app available on Google store. Skyweaver attempts to make its blockchain component almost invisible and to position itself as a popular game first, with P2E options adding to the appeal.
Overall, P2E games cannot work without some form of investment and inflow of new buyers. However, projects are creative when trying to build their universes. Some rely on token sales, others offer rare collections as a source of financing. But the best approach to reaching real players fast is to allow low barriers to using the game. Play to earn games also employ different reward models, relying on different mixes of NFT items, reward tokens, voting tokens and cryptocurrency trading to monetize profits.