Image source: Indian Express
When non-fungible tokens (NFTs) made waves last year, they initially started as collectibles that came with benefits for holders.
However, things have changed, and Yuga Labs, the startup behind the popular Bored Ape Yacht Club collection, believes that the future of NFT lies in gaming.
Yuga Labs co-founders Wylie Aronow and Greg Solano, best known as Gordon Goner and Garga, have a version for their metaverse game “Otherside.”
The two are betting on video games that utilize NFT assets; however, they don’t want to create a “walled garden.”
After the “Otherside” announcement, Yuga Lab’s founders have been hard at work building its development team.
“Otherside” has been described as having everything, from a metaverse to an MMORPG.
Earlier in 2020, the startup raised $450 million in its first funding round, bringing it to a $4 billion valuation.
Currently, Yuga Labs is sprinting towards the launch of their Web3-centric metaverse.
According to those who have seen early access footage, the metaverse can easily be compared to “World of Warcraft.”
“We’re building a team of creative technologists,” said Aronow.
“I’ve been calling them the Yuganeers, but they’re like the Imagineers—they’re our creative ninjas.”
Aronow is currently busy to the point where it’s hard for him to focus on any one thing.
“I don’t prioritize,” he said. “We do everything all the time.”
Meanwhile, Solano has his sights on keeping BAYC alive, but he also wants to show the world what Yuga can do with its Web3 funding.
“I want to impress and show off technical prowess that we can do now with a bigger team, but also just remind people, ‘Hey, this is a pretty ridiculous club here,’” he said.
“And we’re just here to have fun.”
Yuga Labs game development
The startup’s process is different compared to traditional game publishers.
Their team is moving faster and bringing in NFT holders as de facto “Otherside” testers.
“I think we’re doing things in contrast to the way a lot of gaming companies would do things,” said Aronow.
“Starting with the iterative development of the game itself.”
“Typically, what you see is you’d maybe get a teaser, a few months later you get a trailer, three years later, you get a game.”
Instead, Yuga Labs will slowly reveal “Otherside” through multiple “trips,” wherein selected individuals can explore areas of the upcoming virtual world.
The company isn’t making game products for the largest possible demographic compared to other game developers.
“We are always building out everything for the person who bought an Ape for $200,” Aronow added.
Despite looking like an MMORPG, “Otherside” isn’t being designed for children or people who don’t have coins.
“I think one way of thinking about it is as a semi-decentralized, but absolutely Web3 native, Roblox,” described Aronow.
“But obviously much better looking and geared for a slightly more adult audience.”
“Otherside” has an MMORPG look due to Greg Solano co-authoring a book about “World of Warcraft” in 2019.
“We want to tell an amazing story,” explained Solano. “You know, about what the f*** these Koda things are, and a strange world that we found ourselves teleported into.”
“And we want to give the space for people’s creativity to build on top of and enjoy.”
Bored Ape co-founders want ‘Otherside’ metaverse to be ‘Web3-native Roblox’ for adults