We’re living through transformative times, which can feel both exciting and hard to keep up with. All that talk of Web 3.0, cryptocurrencies and the metaverse, but most of us are still left scratching our heads when trying to understand what it actually means.
The good news is that while the technology might be a new concept, there are plenty of great projects already taking off and creating opportunities that could change your life in a profound way. In particular, the metaverse and crypto are coming together to shape the future of digital frontiers in areas like gaming, work, entertainment, education, shopping and much more.
With so much going on, it’s perhaps worth getting to know what’s this all about and which metaverse projects to keep a close eye on in 2023.
What Is The Metaverse?
While we have delved into it previously, here’s a quick recap: the metaverse refers to an all-encompassing digital world where users, in the the form of an avatar, can interact with each other, perform day to day activities and have the same type of experiences they would in the real world. It’s easier to simply imagine the metaverse as an overlap between physical and digital, bridging what’s best out of both platforms. We can also think of it was the next evolution in online settings where the social interactions we have will become even more multidimensional, leading us to participate and connect with others in more meaning ways.
Tech giants such as Meta, Google, Microsoft and Tencent are plowing ahead with metaverse projects, each in the hopes of becoming a major shaping force behind this new digital realm. The race has seen heavy hitters drawing out their wallets - and the payout could be huge.
Recent estimates indicate that the global metaverse market is expected to grow by as much as 40% within the next eight years, being valued at nearly $670 billion by 2030. According to this report, “major factors expected to drive the revenue growth include a growing focus on integrating digital and physical worlds using the Internet, increasing momentum and popularity of Mixed Reality (MR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR).”
There are several drivers worth taking a closer look at in this context, including the growing demand for digital assets and the cryptocurrencies needed to make virtual markets move. Crypto is the currency of the metaverse and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are its assets. The latter can represent anything within a virtual world, from an avatar’s clothing to concert tickets and original art creations, all of which can be developed, bought, sold and exchanged based on a metaverse’s native cryptocurrency.
As such, the metaverse has become home to thriving virtual markets. Metaverse crypto has become increasingly widespread through exchanges and its accessibility has seen the technology being adopted by consumers and investors alike.
Sensorium Galaxy is an example of a metaverse, whose blockchain-powered virtual economy can fairly and transparently reward users for their help in co-creating its many worlds. That’s because blockchain-based currencies allow all assets inside a metaverse to be easily and securely created, exchanged, shared and tracked, potentially allowing items to be seamlessly moved by its users across different worlds or meta destinations. Sure, these might seem like unreal worlds but they can have some pretty real upsides, trust us.
If you're worried you missed the metaverse boat, perhaps it isn’t yet all too late. Here are ten metaverse projects that should definitely be on your radar if you’re looking to invest in 2023.
Top 10 Metaverse Crypto Projects To Follow In 2023
Decentraland is already an established metaverse project that’s gained plenty of projection no less thanks to the fact that people are willingly snapping up plots of virtual lands there for millions. Yes, millions as in millions... of (real life) dollars. But arguably the best part of Decentraland is the fact that it can be seen as a digital blank canvas for pretty much anything imaginable - and unimaginable, too. Sort of like the real world, but even better. Inside this metaverse, you’re able to shop your favorite brands, attend events, play games, meet new people, build new business projects and even gamble. All of this has a real-world feel to it, which is why this metaverse remains one of the best projects of its kind out there. Decentraland is built on the Ethereum blockchain and is entirely user-owned, leaving those to enter it with plenty of room to create their own settings, avatars, marketplaces, digital infrastructures and applications. The cryptocurrency that supports all of this bustling virtual world is known as MANA, which can be easily purchased through a number of top crypto exchanges. As of late, the platform has seen a bigger integration of eCommerce tools, making it a key destination for advertising and marketing, along with the many other draws we already mentioned. For that reason, it’s safe to assume that Decentraland will continue growing and remain at the top of the best metaverse projects in 2023.
Axie Infinity (AXS)
Unless you’re living under a rock, there’s simply no way you haven’t heard of Axie Infinity before. This blockchain-based game has gripped the world with its adorable animal-like characters and the opportunities it gives to its players who’ve found themselves earning some big bucks while doing something as enjoyable as gaming. In fact, many have made playing Axie into a full-time job. At the heart of this Ethereum blockchain metaverse project are Axie’s native cryptocurrencies AXS and SLP. Each serve for different purposes inside the game. AXS, or Axie Infinity Shards, serves as a governance token. Players who hold AXS get to vote on the game’s future development plans, including updates and treasury balance use. AXS has consistently been ranked among the top metaverse cryptocurrencies and in 2021 alone, its value went up by some 200% when compared to the previous year. As for the SLP tokens, also known as Smooth Love Potion, these can be earned as rewards through battle or adventure mode. More importantly, SLP tokens that can be used to breed Axies. As the popularity of the game exploded, these creatures became increasingly more valuable - and that is a trend we hope to continue seeing growing in 2023. And since players can easily take the in-game currency and cash it out in the real world, that’s a model that is unlikely to go anywhere anytime soon. Axie Infinity is and will stay as one of the top metaverses to keep an eye on this year.
The Sandbox (SAND)
The Sandbox is a virtual world built on the Ethereum blockchain. Much like Decentraland, this metaverse is focused on original content creation as well as gaming. Taking inspiration from the likes of Minecraft and Roblox, the Sandbox uses a 3D voxel approach to let its players make use of their imagination and create worlds in whatever way they want. Anyone can build, own, and monetize their gaming experience using the platform’s native currency - SAND. This ERC-20 utility token is used throughout the entire Sandbox ecosystem, supporting all transactions and interactions. To date, users have created over 70 million unique worlds and environments, leading to a vibrant market of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Besides hosting incredible content-building experiences, the Sandbox also allows its community to build games, assets and applications on top of their land parcels. Each LAND is a unique non-fungible token lying on the public Ethereum blockchain (ERC-721). So yes, there are plenty of opportunities within their metaverse that you might want to start exploring.
Gala is a blockchain gaming platform that leverages the best out of non-fungible tokens and the fun of gaming to create a space where players can freely exchange in-game items. Gala hosts a number of blockchain-based games which are described as being social games focused on relationships and connecting players. Currently, the games available are Mirandus, Spider Tank, Town Star, Fortified, and Echoes of Empire. One of the strong points of this blockchain project is the level of authority and ownership it gives to gamers. This is largely achieved through the game’s native digital coin - GALA - which is used across the platform for things like network governance, rewards and node operator incentives. Gala is also used, of course, when purchasing digital assets, NFTs, from the game’s store and player marketplace. As with other blockchain-based titles, Gala players can create and customize their avatars.
Sensorium Galaxy (SENSO)
Sensorium Galaxy is a digital metaverse that’s been developed in collaboration with some of the world’s top artists, producers, and media companies. Our metaverse consists of several worlds, each acting as a hub dedicated to a specific set of experiences, and you can have a taste of it all today, with the Sensorium mobile app.
PRISM is the premier world of Sensorium Galaxy, being the entry point for music and entertainment. This is where metaverse users will be getting access to exclusive VR performances by chart-topping artists including David Guetta, Steve Aoki, Armin van Buuren and many more. By merging cutting-edge AI and VR technology with top-tier entertainment content in a virtual reality galaxy, Sensorium can offer an unmatched multisensory experience that extends to its other worlds, including MOTION that will be hosting mindfulness and self-exploration, encouraging the attainment of higher levels of knowledge.
A crucial feature of Sensorium Galaxy is its in-platform currency - SENSO - which leveraged blockchain technology to power a fair, transparent and user-owned decentralized economy. This token can be carried through varied transactions, from creating new avatars to purchasing event tickets and developing original content.
As for boundary-pushing applications we’re developing, they include:
- AI-driven avatars (including some of the world’s first social AI DJs)
- A metaverse music streaming
- Advanced social and game mechanics
- Extensive entertainment, immersion and interactivity features
- Blockchain-based monetization streams
However, the Sensorium Galaxy isn’t limited to these just these experiences and the worlds we’ve detailed as our metaverse will soon expand to other locations that users will be able to explore and enjoy!
Crypto meets 3D scanning technology, together bridging the physical and digital worlds. That is how Metahero describes its own project - and it’s easy to see why it’s been getting a lot of buzz. This platform promises to introduce a new concept of ultra-realistic digital clones that users can customize and use in a number of metaverse activities. Each 3D avatar features a life-like body type and a photo-realistic face achieved thanks to Metahero’s 3D modeling partnership with Wolf Digital World (WDW), resulting in extraordinary AAA avatars. The platform also enables users to scan their own bodies and mint the scan as an NFT that can be used in the metaverse. As if that wasn’t fun enough, avatars can be suited with different skills and powers from a range of classes like Close Combat Specialist, Spellcaster, Mentalist, Enchanter, Elementalist, Range Combat Specialist and Assassin. Players can level up their Recruit and can trade or sell the NFT that powers each Recruit's account. And in case you’re wondering how all of this works, one-of-a-kind Meta scanners are used to not only scan, but print and create new in-game avatars. It’s truly a fun process to try out. HERO, Metahero’s native token, has also proven to be a success in virtual world transactions and it’s expected that both this metaverse’s innovative NFTs and coin could hit bigger marketplaces in the near future.
Somnium Space (Cube)
By now, having a 3D experience just isn’t enough. With some many great platforms to choose from, it takes a great proposition to lure in new metaverse users. Fortunately, Somnium Space does just that. This 3D blockchain platform is incredibly accessible and filled with mind boggling experiences, and opportunities to experiment with all facets of the metaverse. Ok - newcomers might be underwhelmed by the quality of the graphics (we know, we know...) what makes it truly unique is how it lets users fully imagine and customize both their avatars and the spaces around them. In fact, Somnium describes itself as "an open, social and persistent virtual reality platform", combining not just a place where users can “live” but functionalities like entertainment, communication, e-commerce and much more. While the metaverse projects we’ve mentioned so far are based on the Ethereum chain, Somnium has opted for a multi-chain approach that also includes Solana. This opened new opportunities for the metaverse, allowing users to access a new level of activities like building an NFT Gallery, using a VR avatar to visit VR concerts while dancing with a full-body tracking kit and creating new NFT-based worlds and experiences that others can enjoy as well. Another major difference is Somnium's metaverse economy, which is based on CUBE. The in-platform cryptocurrency is used to support transactions and transfer assets, and it’s become one of the most stable coins across the metaverse options currently available. Users might also be interested in exploring the so-called WORLD NFTs that give access to exciting gaming experiences or that can be also used to create wearables. Either way, Somnium is definitely in a league of its own, which also explains how it has attracted the support of crypto heavy hitters like Gemini, Microsoft, Opensea to name just a few.
Yes, we’ve talked about crypto games - and that’s all good and well. But how about we introduce you to one of the world’s first AAA crypto games? That’s right, Star Atlas has entered the chat. This cinematic and mesmerizing title has all the crypto good stuff packed into one place. Great storyline? Check? Out of this world settings? Check? Great community? Yes. And monetization opportunities? An easy yes. Star Atlas is the complete package, really. We’ll leave the gameplay for you to explore, so let’s talk about another great feature which is Star Atlas’ two tokens built on the Solana blockchain - ATLAS and POLIS. The first, ATLAS, is very much like your typical in-game coin, which users can rely on to complete activities like entering battles and exploring different worlds as accessing the marketplace. This is particularly important as assets within the game are NFTs, with only a very few items being the exception. POLIS, on the other hand, lets players engage in something the developers say is the game’s “political intrigue” aspect. But more importantly, players are in charge of making decisions about the game — and perhaps even outvote the creators. The project has teased a number of decentralization features that will surely intrigue a lot of gamers out there and make it a top metaverse project to follow in 2023.
Bloktopia’s skyscraper-themed metaverse project that aims to be a unique platform where users across a 21-story building can learn, meet new people, do business, and experiment with a wide range of activities. The building won’t be complete at first, so this metaverse will rely heavily on the participation and creativity of each user. While this upcoming project, expected to be launched in the coming months, hasn’t unveiled much, there are already some interesting sneak peeks like a World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) space. In addition, Bloktopia seeks to create new mechanisms for generating content and income for all who choose to live within the metaverse. When it launches, users can access levels 1-6. What’s inside it, is part of the intrigue so you’ll have to stick around and find out.
Cryptovoxels is an Ethereum-based metaverse with Minecraft-like vibes. As such, this metaverse consists of a whole world of digital infrastructures and blocks of land users can continuously build on top of. Assets can be traded on OpenSea in exchange for ETH, but Cryptovoxels also has its own currency - the Cryptovoxels Parcel (CVPA). These can also be bought through OpenSea and correspond to land in Cryptovoxel's Origin City. Users retain full ownership of each land parcel, known as Voxels, as they are an NFT. Players can choose to build inside their virtual properties, including adding posters, signs or audio tracks, or simply sell them. As one of the oldest metaverse projects, Cryptovoxels has managed to create a great community that's only grown over the years, leading to ever more creative and exciting NFTs. For that reason, Cryptovoxels is a project to keep in mind in 2023 (and beyond).
The metaverse and the crypto world are evolving at a breakneck speed. So much so that it's hard to predict the future of digital worlds and what cryptocurrencies are likely to stay at the top of the best metaverse projects. But we see it as just another and exciting facet of the tech revolution we're experiencing. That said, even with lots of unknowns thrown into the mix, we hope our list was a great starting point in your journey into the metaverse.